Wednesday 5 October 2022

Thursday, October 6, 2022 - Do you give up easily when your prayers are not answered? Will you be shameless today? Will you persist today?

 To read the texts click on the texts: Gal 3:1-5; Lk 11:5-13

Luke 11,5-8 is exclusive to Luke and deals with the assurance that God will answer prayer. This point is implicitly made through the parable in these verses. It is a parable from common experience. If the Greek word anaideia is translated as “shameless” (which is it literal meaning), then the parable is stating that it would be unthinkable in the setting of a Galilean village that a neighbour would not get up to give his friend what he wants even if it meant disturbing the entire family at midnight to oblige his friend. The reason why he would do this is to avoid being shamed. However, it can also mean that the one who makes the petition is shameless for going to the friend’s house at midnight to beg for bread.

If the translation of the word anaidea is “persistence” or “boldness”, then the point is that it is the persistence of the one who asks for bread, which will get him what he wants. The friend who gives the bread will be tired out by the persistence of the one who is asking.

In 11,9-13, we have a three-fold admonition, “Ask, search and knock” (11,9-10), followed by two rhetorical questions (11,11-12) both of which elicit the answer “No, there is no one”.

The final verse of this section 11,13 contrasts evil human beings with the heavenly Father. If humans evil as they are will still give their children only what is good, then the heavenly Father will do more than that. He will give the greatest of gifts, the Holy Spirit to those who ask.

To be without shame is also to be without ego. The one who is shameless is also one who can persevere since he/she has nothing to lose. Perseverance is indeed the key to open the door to God’s heart.

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