The purpose of this parable of the Persistent widow is to impress upon disciples that they should not lose heart in prayer. (Luke 18:1-8) The widow did not give up, the judge was fed up. She wins and the judge accepts his defeat.
Appointed judge: The judge mentioned could have been appointed by Herod or Roman authorities. In general, at that time, Elders judged disputes and gave verdicts. Such judges appointed by the king or emperor were notorious and used to distort justice for illicit gain.
Wicked judge: The judge did not have a ‘fear of God,’ and hence did not have wisdom from God. He did not consider other people with respect. That means he was haughty and mean in treating others. Windows would not be regarded as a person at all to be respected but to be oppressed.
Wearied judge: The judge by repeated request by the widow was weary, or fed up. Widow did not give up, but the judge was fed up. The other meaning of the term is she stunned or knocked her off like a boxer in the arena or ring.
Justice done: The judge decided to dispense justice, unable to bear the regular visit of the widow. He became weary, tired, and exhausted by her persistent presence in the court.
Contrasts: God and judge are stark contrasts. God is righteous, judicious, and fair. The judge was not fair, even wicked. God is concerned about each person, but for the judge, it was just a case and would deal impersonally. God loves and blessed people, and the judge wanted to protect himself from a persistent widow.
Persistent prayer: People of God, especially those who are persecuted cry unto the Lord, day and night. The persecuted need special grace to persevere and persist in prayer. God will do justice at the appropriate time.
Will faith be rare? The faith needed is based on the understanding, God is righteous, unlike the unjust judge. Since God hears and answers, disciples should not lose heart. When the Lord comes, such persistent and consistent faith may become scarce.
Do I always pray in faith?