Tag Archives: importunity

Importunity

Importunity – Im por What?

Im-por-tun-ity

Persistence, especially to the point of annoyance. Boldness.

And he from within shall answer and say, Trouble me not: the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give thee. I say unto you, Though he will not rise and give him, because he is his friend, yet because of his IMPORTUNITY he will rise and give him as many as he needeth. ( Luke 11:7-8 )

In this example we see that it’s late and people are sleeping. The neighbor has a visitor. He goes next door and asks for food to serve the visitor. He doesn’t just ask. He asks with persistence and boldness with a full sense of expectation. No doubts no hesitation. The Bible is riddled with examples of importunity. Moses at the Red Sea comes to mind. He trusted that beyond the insurmountable odds God would make a way. No doubt no hesitation. Likewise Abraham haggled with God over the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah like a friend would with a friend, an equal. No doubt no hesitation.  Peter dared against the obvious dangers of the tempest surrounding him and bid Jesus call him out onto the water. He stepped out and walked on the water towards Jesus. No doubt no hesitation. (Yes, he sank like a rock when he took his eyes off  Jesus but that’s another post

And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint;  Saying, There was in a city a judge, which feared not God, neither regarded man: And there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary. And he would not for a while: but afterward he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man;  Yet because this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me. (Luke 18:1-5 )

In this example of persistence (importunity) Jesus uses an unjust Judge to show a comparison. The widows persistence wore down the judge and she received her justice. Yet, Jesus goes on to teach us that if this unjust judge gave in to the persistent widow won’t God (Who is just) answer those that cry out to Him? (Luke 18:6-8)

Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: (Matthew 7:7)

Ask, Seek, Knock

Even the acronym for these three words spells ASK!

The Word of God tells us to come boldly into the throne of grace. We need nobody to speak for us (even though Jesus Himself is our Advocate, again lets save that for another post). The veil that separated the Holy of Holies in the Temple from the rest of God’s people was torn when Jesus died. There’s nothing and nobody stopping us from entering into the very presence of The Almighty. The boldness, that importunity, is the key. No doubt no hesitation.

Importunity

Im-por-What?

Impor-powermeant!! That’s what.

Religious-minded people may have told you that meekness and a poverty mentality is what God expects and rewards yet here are several examples of the obvious. Certainly God expects and deserves reverence. We are to Fear the Lord. That fear means reverence and respect in awe of His power. We are not expected to cower or tremble when we pray. Neither are we to pray a prayer of wishful thinking not being sure of the outcome because “God works in mysterious ways”! He does not work in mysterious ways. Jesus shared His plans, hopes and mission with His disciples.

There is one thing that this importunity indicates.

Relationship!

The neighbors knew each other. Probably very well considering the closeness of community back then. Likewise, I’m sure that the widow knew that judge and his reputation which is why she was unrelenting. When Jesus instructs us to be persistent by asking, seeking and knocking He is looking for a relationship. I heard a great sermon where the example of ask seek knock was likened to walking across a grassy place such as a short cut. The repetition of walking across that grassy path wears away the grass and leaves the bare earth that’s been beaten down lower that the surrounding turf.

Jesus clearly taught that if we abide(Live, dwell, accept or act in accordance with) in Him and His words abide in us (see the causative relationship?) then we can ask what we will and it shall be done. (John 15:7)

Beat a path to God

Practice IMPURTUNITY

He will hear you!

 

Be blessed, A&B 

 

 

Please Lord Jesus. Please, please, please….

   How many times have I prayed a prayer that started and ended with these words? Pleading with God as if my begging would move Him to compassion. Not to say that God is not compassionate. He is. He is, however, more moved by our faith than He is by our fear. Isn’t that where I was coming from all those times that I pleaded with Him out of desperation and fear of what would happen unless He intervened? I think so.

   Jesus taught many times about prayer. Luke records an example of a friend going to a neighbors house in the middle of the night to borrow three loaves of bread. Although the man initially resists disrupting his entire household to give the bread, he does so because of the persistence (the King James calls it importunity) of the borrower. The moral of this story is where we get the famous – Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. Luke 11:5-9

   Closer to home, our congregation laid hands on and prayed for a jet pilot that was due to ship off for the first Desert Storm Operation in the late ’80’s. He gave a testimony of his revelation regarding prayer. He said that during many of the training missions He would pray before, during and afterwards something similar to my type of prayer outlined earlier. Then it dawned on him – Faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen!! Today, we would call that and “ah-ha moment.”

   He changed his prayer and also his outlook by praying a prayer of thanksgiving to the Lord for giving him the strength and courage to perform his mission. The Word of God tells us to pray and that we should pray with expectancy and gratitude.

 Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses every thought, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

Phil 4:6-8 HCSB

   The Gospels are full of examples of how Jesus was moved by the faith some people had in Him. One lady only had to touch the hem of His garment to be healed. My favorite part of that scripture is the reaction Jesus and His disciples had to the whole thing. While throngs of people pushed and pressed Jesus like a herd of commuters getting on the 5:35 out of Penn Station, He felt one person’s touch as being different – because it was a faith-filled touch. When He asked about who touched Him the disciples said – Man. have you lost your mind? Do yo not see how many people are grabbing at you here? (paraphrase mine). They didn’t get it. Her importunity got the attention of the Lord and results that 12 years of effort could not get. Luke8:42-48

   There are numerous other examples of how Faith got results by capturing the Lords’ attention. Conversely, there is an example of how unbelief can handcuff God. Mark records how Jesus returned to His home town and was unable to perform many miracles because they saw him as that carpenters son. Mark 6:2-5 They basically said – Who does he think he is teaching in the synagogue and how has he done the things we have heard of?

  I also find it interesting that John the Baptist’s father, Zacharias,  was silenced until after his son was born so as to not speak unbelief and doubt on the plan of God. Peter was also chastised for speaking out against the plan of God. Our words are powerful and we can either agree with God or oppose God by the words we speak.

So Jesus answered and said to them, “Have faith in God. For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. Mark 11:22-23 

Have Faith In God

Believe in God

Trust God

Thank you all as always for stopping by. Be blessed, Al

 

Please note that I am not endorsing any kind of “faith-based” recklessness nor do I adhere to the doctrines that some refer to as “name it – claim it”. I believe that there is so much written and spoken of by our Lord regarding having faith that it bears mentioning even if extremists have tried to misuse it. Ultimately Jesus is Lord and we must trust in His wisdom for our lives. Al