…when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?
I have always found this verse to be somewhat troubling.
These words were spoken by Jesus Himself. He had just told the parable of the unjust judge who grants the request of a widow woman, not because he thinks her case has merit, or because he wants to help her, or because he thinks it is the right thing to do, or because he fears God. He did it because she was bothering him and beating him down with her continual complaints. She had become a bothersome pest! Jesus then says that our Heavenly Father will not be like that to His own children who come to Him continually – day and night. No, He will avenge them speedily!
The point of this parable was that we should always pray and not give up or lose heart (See Luke 18:1).
So, why did Jesus follow the statement that God will avenge His elect speedily with the question, “When the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?”
There are a number of verses in the New Testament that admonish us to continue in our faith, in our walk, in doing good, in prayer, to persevere until the end. We frail humans, who are but dust, need to be reminded often of the things that we are to do. Jesus knows that it is our tendency to “grow weary in well doing,” to doubt, to lose faith. Jesus called His closest followers, the 12 apostles, “little faiths” (oligopistos). It was almost like a nickname.
Jesus seems to be implying in Luke 18:8 that mankind will grow weary of praying without ceasing as we wait for His return, and it seems like our prayers are not being answered, or even heard. We all know times when we pray and pray, sometimes desperately, and it seems like our prayers go no further than the ceiling. Jesus wants us to know that we should never give up or stop praying or believing! While from our perspective, it seems like God is not listening or caring, He is always working and will deliver us at the perfect time and in the perfect way. It is up to Him to avenge us. It is up to us to continue to bring our petitions to Him — in faith.
It hurts my heart that Jesus wonders out loud about finding faith on the earth when He returns. BUT — He knows that He will find a faithful remnant who are fighting the good fight of faith.
There are many things that try to steal our faith in Jesus in this present day. There are even those within “the faith” that are doubting the validity of Jesus’s words, even the entirety of the Bible and are in a process of “deconstruction.” You may have noticed that a number of prominent Christians have announced that they have left the faith in recent days. It has become a movement of sorts in Christendom. While this is tragic, it is prophesied. The falling away. The apostasy.
We must actively fight against our own tendencies to be led away into doubt and worse. Remember, it was doubt in God’s words that caused the fall of mankind in the Garden of Eden. Do you think that Satan would drop his tried and true method of casting doubt into our minds when it has worked so well for 6,000 years? No! He’s telling his minions, “Boys, don’t try to reinvent the wheel! These humans are rather stupid and doubt comes so naturally to them, we can still capitalize on that! So, get out their and sow those seeds. Hurry! The time is short!”
Jesus assures us that it only takes faith the size of a grain of mustard seed to move mountains! You have enough faith! Exercise it! Keep your eyes on Jesus, the author and finisher of your faith. Jesus called Peter a “little faith” when he had just walked on water! Because Peter momentarily took his eyes off of Jesus and looked at the pounding waves and wind and lost focus, he began to sink. Jesus knows that we can be in faith one second and in doubt the next, but He is ready, willing, and able to grab us out of our place of doubt and rescue us.
Take some time to examine yourself and the status of your faith. The Word says that faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. Make reading the Bible and meditating on it a priority in the days to come.
Look up all the verses where Jesus calls the disciples “little faiths” to see what prompted this. They are found here: Matthew 6:30, 8:26, 14:31, 16:8; Luke 12:28.
Find verses that talk about faith and about persistence in prayer. Choose a verse or two and commit it to memory this week. This will give you ammunition to use against the devil when he comes trying to sow seeds of doubt!
Let me ask you a question. Will you be among those the Son of Man finds in the faith? If you are not sure, talk to someone about it. If you don’t have anyone you feel comfortable talking to, reach out here. We would love to help.
Father, thank You that You are loving and kind and Your desire is toward us. Grow our faith in You, and help us to not grow weary in well doing. We cry out to You, “Lord, we believe, help our unbelief!” In Jesus’s name. Amen.
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