Wednesday, January 18, 2017
Today’s Bible Reading: Genesis 44-46, Luke 18
SCRIPTURE: Luke 18:1-30 (particularly verses 1, 7-8, 29-30)
1 … men always ought to pray and not lose heart.
7 …shall God not avenge His own elect who cry out day and night to Him, though He bears long with them? 8 I tell you that He will avenge them speedily…
29 …there is no one who has left house or parents or brothers or wife or children, for the sake of the kingdom of God, 30 who shall not receive many times more in this present time, and in the age to come eternal life.” (NKJV) (emphasis mine).
The word, “speedily” (v. 8) and the phrase, “in this present time” (v. 30) caught my attention as I was reading today’s Bible passages. In these words from Jesus, He gives us the admonition to keep persisting in prayer to God. The parable He tells of the widow who continually and repeatedly laments to the heartless judge until he gives her justice, is much like the old adage, “the squeaky wheel gets the most grease.”
The promise here to God’s children—“His own elect”—(v. 7), is that they will receive answers “speedily” (v. 8). Furthermore, the Lord promises that whatever was sacrificed to serve Him will be returned with blessings of “many times more” today—“in this present time” (v. 30).
In the parable of the persistent widow, Jesus describes a judge who has neither care for God nor for people. Yet, because of the widow’s continual and unrelenting petitions before him, he basically gave in to her demands just to get her off his back. Jesus then tells us the point of the story—the point for His elect—the point for those who have become His children by believing in Him and receiving His gift of salvation—the point for you if you are a believer—the point for me:
He says to notice what the unjust judge did—how he ruled in favor of the persistent widow. How much more then, He says, should you trust in God to avenge you when you persistently cry out to Him day and night? Yes, He will avenge you quickly (vv. 7-8).
Furthermore, in addition to receiving eternal life in the age to come, I am promised multiplied blessings today, on this side of heaven, in return for all I have given up to follow Him (vv. 29-30).
Lord, thank You for the encouragement that I may—and indeed should—continually and repeatedly offer the cries of my heart before You. Thank You for the promise that You will avenge me and mine today. Thank You for the promise of blessings that are not postponed for the life to come, but that may be realized today.
In light of these truths and with Your help, may I rest in anxiety free peace, knowing that I and my affairs are in Your capable hands.
Through Your grace in Christ. Amen. -AP