Luke 18:1-8; I John 5:14, 15; Mark 6:41


Today’s passage is a parable told by Jesus.  Sounds simple enough.  This unique  story, however, is about a nameless widow in a nameless city who nags a nameless  judge for justice until the judge grants her request. The punch is: Jesus TEACHES us of prayer by telling this very curious story.

Today’s message is designed to accomplish several objectives:

  • change your attitude about and approach to prayer;
  • encourage you to become more aggressive when you pray;
  • help you overcome obstacles when you pray;
  • empower you to pray more efficaciously when you know you are right; and
  • learn how to NAG The Lord effectively!

NAG: to annoy or irritate a person with continuous urging.

A JUDGE – v.  2                                     
    1. A judge who neither feared God nor respected people was, by Biblical standards, a bad judge.   Exodus 18:21; Leviticus 19:15,16
    2. The judge was supposed to settle disputes fairly and to restore justice.
    3. The woman did not allow the bad judge or his reputation to deter her.
    4. You will not allow anyone – or their reputation – to deter you from getting what you know God has for you!
A WIDOW – v.  3
    1. Widows, in Israelite tradition, were very vulnerable: a) they could not inherit their husband’s property; b) there was no social welfare program; and c) there was no opportunity for independent employment for them.
    2. In this story, the judge is the widow’s only hope for justice. And, he is a bad judge!
    3. What do you do when your only solution to your problem is in the hands of an unjust person?
    4. ..nag…nag
A MONOLOGUE – vv.  4, 5
    1. The reader hears the judge’s interior monologue. Like the rich man (12:17-19); the prodigal son (15:17-19); and the dishonest manager (16:1-12), the judge talks to himself.
    2. The judge decides to grant the widow justice ONLY so she will not “hit him in the eye.”
    3. The judge does the unexpected thing in response to a powerless widow!
    4. He does the unexpected simply because he wants her to stop bugging him!
    1. In this context, “quickly” does not refer to chronology.  It means, instead, that

God will not hesitate to vindicate those who call on Him!

  1. As a believer in Jesus Christ, you are a member of the elect. Romans 8:33
  2. So, call on Him!
    1. Jesus’ followers should have the endurance of the “long pull” that faith requires.  You gotta learn to have and implement “long pull” faith by nagging.
    2. Luke discourages presumption about when Jesus will return. Have faith until He does return.
    3. Meanwhile, “nag” God for what you know He has, including justice.
  • The widow appeared before the judge in a courtroom.

You, on the other hand, can appear before God in His Throne Room.  Hebrews 4:14-16

  • The judge did not care about the widow.

God, on the other hand, cares!  Luke 11:3

  • The widow did not have legal access to the judge.

You, on the other hand, have legal access to God at all times!   Ephesians 2:18

  • The widow did not have the promises of God to rely on.

You, on the other hand, do!   Romans 8:26

  • The widow petitioned the judge from poverty.

You, on the other hand, petition God from a position of riches. Philippians 4:19

Source:  The People’s New Testament Commentary by Fred Craddock and M. Boring


If you would like the PDF Version of the sermon notes, click HERE.

If you would like the Word Version of the sermon notes, click HERE.

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