Those of us who follow Christian news can see how there is a steady rise in the persecution of Christians all over the world. It has become clear that Satan has “great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time,” [Revelation 12:12]. The number of incidences of persecution can become overwhelming and disheartening, but we must cling to the precious promises our Savior gives us in his word. One of those promises appears in the parable of the unjust judge–
1And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint;
2Saying, There was in a city a judge, which feared not God, neither regarded man:
3And there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary.
4And he would not for a while: but afterward he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man;
5Yet because this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me.
6And the Lord said, Hear what the unjust judge saith.
7And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them?
8I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth? [Luke 18]
We see here a circumstance where a widow was being unjustly oppressed by an enemy. She knew she had valid legal grounds to bring a legal action against her oppressor and she knew where to go to make her plea. Though her motion was filed to the court, the judge hesitated awhile before moving forward on her case.
He knew her case was legally sound and he could grant her motion for judgment, but the judge, who was either an atheist or agnostic and had no love for his fellow humans, granted her motion simply because he did not want to be bothered with the possibility that she could make trouble for him with her persistence.
Scenarios similar to this one are played out in our American courts every day so even today we can relate to the point Christ is making. If an evil judge can make a ruling in favor of a persecuted defenseless widow for his own personal unjust reasons, then we can expect God to avenge those of us who are his precious elect.
The God who created the unjust judge (who would have had no power at all except it were given to him from above [John 19:11; Romans 13:1]) is the same God whose thoughts and ways are higher than any unjust judge’s thoughts and ways. And if an unjust judge, being lower than our righteous God, can render a just verdict, then surely God will avenge his children, whom he has called and sanctified by the blood of Jesus. When we have troubles heaped on us by an unbelieving world, our Father is available all day and all night (24/7) to hear our pleas for help.
Yes, he will “bear long” with us sometimes when we pray. From our perspective, it seems like he is dragging his feet on giving us an answer or that he didn’t hear us or that he seemingly doesn’t care when he takes so long, or even that he seems to take pleasure at watching us suffer, but none of this is true. What is true is that God’s compassions fail not and his faithfulness is great toward us [Lamentations 3:22-23]. When he takes his time granting his vengeance for us, it is for a greater purpose that only he knows. Sometimes he reveals it to us at a later date in our lives and at other times he waits until we get to heaven to show us the big picture.
Nevertheless, we must remind ourselves that ALL things work together for the good of those of us who love God and are called according to his purpose. We also must remember that the trying of our faith worketh patience–a patience that takes us to perfection in Christ [Romans 5: 3-5; James 1:2-4].
Our Lord Jesus promised us in this teaching that God will one day take vengeance on our unrepentant enemies, even if it seems like it’s taking forever. When his vengeance finally comes on them, the act of vengeance will be executed very quickly.
And with this promise comes a very poignant question. When Jesus comes, will he find faith on earth? Will there be anyone around who is faithful to him? This seems to imply an answer ranging from “it’s questionable” to “it’s very doubtful.” Or it could be a plea from Christ for us to remain faithful to him since he has proven faithful to us.
Rest assured, persecuted saints, God will make your enemies sorry that they messed with you.
–posted by Harry A. Gaylord–