As We Pray- Luke18:9-14
Do you think Jesus was a “people watcher?” He certainly knew people didn’t He?
Luke records two parables of Jesus in Chapter 18 that speaks about why and how to pray. Both parables have characters that we can understand, because we know people like that. The first parable is an encouragement always to pray and shows why we should expect and know that God will answer our prayers. A persistent widow gets justice from a crooked judge because the judge finally relents just to get rid of the constant harassment for justice by the widow. If a crooked judge will give justice we should know that our God who loves us will be just to us.
Then Christ instructs in the following parable how we should pray by taking us to the Temple and observing how a Pharisee and a tax collector prayed. The Pharisee praised God for what he was blessed with and the tax collector stumbled with his prayer and didn’t know what to say. What did our “soul watcher” say about their prayer and how we should pray?
Question: Why were tax collectors, publicans, so hated by the Jews?
Answer: The tax collectors in the New Testament era were hated because they worked for the oppressive Roman Empire. Second, the tax collectors in the Bible were Jews who were working for the hated Romans. Third, it was common knowledge that the tax collectors cheated the people they collected from. By hook or by crook, they would collect more than required and keep the extra for themselves. Fourth, because of their skimming off the top, the tax collectors were well-to-do. This further separated them from the lower classes, who resented the injustice of their having to support the publicans’ lavish lifestyle.