Praying With Persistence

Then he said to them, “Suppose one of you has a friend, and he goes to him at midnight and says, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread, because a friend of mine on a journey has come to me, and I have nothing to set before him.’

“Then the one inside answers, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is already locked, and my children are with me in bed. I can’t get up and give you anything.’ I tell you, though he will not get up and give him the bread because he is his friend, yet because of the man’s boldness he will get up and give him as much as he needs.” (Luke 11:5-8)

In this parable, Jesus is teaching us about the need for boldness and persistence when we pray. He reiterates this same principle in Luke 18 when He tells the Parable of the Persistent Widow. The widow keeps approaching a judge for justice. The judge was neither God-fearing nor cared about men, yet because of her persistence he granted her request just to avoid having her wear him out. Jesus ends that story with:

“Effectual fervent prayer has been the mightiest weapon of God’s mightiest soldiers.” -E. M. Bounds

“Will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly.” (Luke 18:6-7)

In contrast to an unjust judge who is compliant simply to get someone off his back, God, who is just and holy and righteous, will respond quickly to the cries of His children. We are told in Hebrews:

For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are–yet was without sin. Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that w may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. (Hebrews 4:15-16)

Jesus, our High Priest, who lives to intercede for us, administers mercy to us as we approach the “throne of grace.”

So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised. For in just a very little while, “He who is coming will come and will not delay. But my righteous one will live by faith. And if he shrinks back, I will not be pleased with him.” (Hebrews 10:35-38)

“With such a High Priest, it follows that believers should approach the throne of grace with confidence. In a book filled with lovely and captivating turns of expression, few excel the memorable phrase “throne of grace.” Such a conception of the presence of God into which beleaguered Christians may come at any time, suggests both the sovereignty of the One they approach (since they come to a “throne”) and His benevolence. At a point of contact with God like this Christians can fully expect to receive mercy and find grace to help … in … time of need.” -Bible Knowledge Commentary

“God, the eternal God of the universe, stands, as it were, like an almighty servant and says: ‘If you, My child, will only pray I will work; if you will only be busy with asking I will see to the doing.’ Not only does He bestow at our cry, but He acts. Not only does our praying evoke His bounty, it sets in motion His omnipotence. Wherefore, as we enter into the secret chamber of prayer, nothing will so stir us to mighty intercession, nothing will so soon make us master-pleaders with God for a lost world, as to whisper to our own soul, again and again, this wonderful truth, ‘While I am praying God is really doing that which I am asking!’”
(James H. McConkey)

Take It to Heart

God calls each one of us to pray both boldly and persistently, not on our own merits or righteousness, for we have none, but on the merits of Christ! “God’s best gifts, like valuable jewels, are kept under lock and key, and those who want them must, with fervent faith, importunately ask for them; for God is the rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.” (Dwight L. Moody)

Previous Next