Friday, September 22, 2017

Hastings: everyone ought to pray

Friday, September 22, 2017
    Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up. He said: “In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared about men. And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, ‘Grant me justice against my adversary.’ For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, ‘Even though I don’t fear God or care about men, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually wear me out with her coming!’” And the Lord said, “Listen to what the unjust judge says. And 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. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?”
   & nbsp;—Luke 18:1-8 (NIV)
    Although prayer has been defined as communion with God, aspiration after the highest things, Stopford Brooke [Irish clergyman, 1832-1916] is right when he insists that prayer, in its plainest meaning, is a petition addressed to God... When Jesus laid the duty of petition upon his disciples, He went on to assert the reasonableness of a man asking and of God answering... Jesus argues along the line of reason that, if an earthly parent ... does the best in his power for his children, will not the Almighty and All-Wise Love, of which human love is only the shadow, do better still for His great family? And therefore our Master teaches that men ought everywhere to pray without fear and without doubt.
    ... James Hastings (1852-1922), The Christian Doctrine of Prayer, Edinbugh: T. & T. Clark, 1915, p. 38 (see the book)
    See also Luke 18:1-8; Matt. 7:7-11; Luke 11:9-13; Eph. 6:18; Col. 4:2; 1 Thess. 5:17; 1 Tim. 2:8; Jude 1:20
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, may You find faith here, within Your people.
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