“And will not God give justice to his elect, who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long over them? I tell you, he will give justice to them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?”
Trust in the timely verdict of a Perfect Judge drives unwavering appeals from his elect.
“Dad, whenever I ask you the answer is no!”
This common complaint explains why children so often abandon parental protection to solve life’s problems on their own. Whether indulging in a sweet treat or incurring the mass destruction of breaking into the tool box, a child’s heart is overcome with this mindset: “I can’t trust you to do what I want so I’m taking over.”
It is an attitude that too often grabs hold of God’s children. We experience what we perceive as a lack of response from God, and we give up talking with God and work to solve life’s problems on our own.
As Luke begins a segment on prayer in chapter 18, he tells a story to encourage us to endure in petitioning our heavenly Judge. The first lesson focuses the character of our Judge. Luke uses a contrast to highlight the nature of God. Unlike the cruel magistrate, Yahweh is just and will not let the guilty go unpunished (Exodus 34:6-7). If the widow in the lesson was relentless in pursuing justice from a godless judge, how much more persistent should we be in bringing our needs for vindication before the righteous God?
A second lesson centers on the content of her plea: a cry for justice. In this life, God allows our great adversary the devil to thwart justice for a time; but in the end he cannot succeed. Therefore, we can endure like the widow, appealing to God time and time again with faith in his promise that true justice will ultimately prevail.
For all those concerned for God’s fame to grow through the display of his justice, the cross of Christ is the great testimony of the Lord’s commitment to punish all rebellion. May our Savior’s amazing grace and mercy fuel persistent prayer as we cry out for justice to triumph in the life of Christ’s Church all over the world.
- What are the most common themes in your prayer life? How do they relate to the glory of God revealed in his justice?
- Do you often feel that God is slow or silent in answering your prayers? How does the content of your appeal align with the revealed will and purpose of God?
- List three people who are suffering injustice for their witness to Jesus around the world. Pray daily that God would uphold justice for them.
“Oh, guard my soul, and deliver me! Let me not be put to shame, for I take refuge in you. May integrity and uprightness preserve me, for I wait for you. Redeem Israel, O God, out of all his troubles.” (Psalm 25:20-22)
“I will bless the Lord at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth.” Psalm 34:1