Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Luke 18:7

now, will not God bring about justice for His elect who cry to Him day and night, and will He delay long over them?
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Despondency;   Jesus, the Christ;   Jesus Continued;   Prayer;   Predestination;   Thompson Chain Reference - Ask;   Christ;   Church;   Elect, the;   Family;   God's;   Importunity;   People, God's;   Prayer;   Promises, Divine;   Secret Prayer;   Seekers;   United Prayer;   Unwise Prayers;   Wicked, the;   The Topic Concordance - Election;   Vengeance;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Election;   Parables;   Prayer;   Prayer, Answers to;   Righteousness;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Parable;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Day;   Election;   Luke, gospel of;   Prayer;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Christ, Christology;   Day;   Prayer;   Widow;   Charles Buck Theological Dictionary - Hearing the Word of God;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Anna;   Herod;   Nehemiah;   Proselytes;   Widow;   Zacharias;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Election;   Luke, Gospel of;   Parables;   Prayer;   Vengeance;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Election;   Longsuffering;   Parable;   Prayer;   Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament - Choice;   Circumstantiality in the Parables;   Cry;   Day of Judgment;   Discourse;   Elect, Election ;   Election;   Eternal Punishment;   Long-Suffering ;   Longsuffering;   Parousia (2);   Police;   Prayer (2);   Questions and Answers;   Retribution (2);   Vengeance;   Vengeance (2);   Wandering Stars;   Widow ;   Widows;   Winter ;   Morrish Bible Dictionary - 33 Patience Long-Suffering Forbearance;   The Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary - Elect;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Chief parables and miracles in the bible;  
Encyclopedias:
Condensed Biblical Cyclopedia - Jesus of Nazareth;   International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Bear;   Gospels, the Synoptic;   Longsuffering;   Prayer;   Prayers of Jesus;   Retribution;  
Devotionals:
Daily Light on the Daily Path - Devotion for November 10;   Every Day Light - Devotion for April 26;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

And shall not God avenge his own elect - And will not God the righteous Judge do justice for his chosen? Probably this may refer to the cruel usage which his disciples had met with, and were still receiving, from the disobedient and unbelieving Jews; and which should be finally visited upon them in the destruction of their city, and the calamities which should follow. But we may consider the text as having a more extensive meaning. As God has graciously promised to give salvation to every soul that comes unto him through his Son, and has put his Spirit in their hearts, inducing them to cry unto him incessantly for it; the goodness of his nature and the promise of his grace bind him to hear the prayers they offer unto him, and to grant them all that salvation which he has led them by his promise and Spirit to request.

Which cry day and night unto him, etc. - This is a genuine characteristic of the true elect or disciples of Christ. They feel they have neither light, power, nor goodness, but as they receive them from him; and, as he is the desire of their soul, they incessantly seek that they may be upheld and saved by him.

Though he bear long with them? - Rather, and He is compassionate towards Them, and consequently not at all like to the unrighteous judge. Instead of μακροθυμων, and be long-suffering, as in our translation, I read μακροθυμει, he is compassionate, which reading is supported by ABDLQ, and several others. The reason which our Lord gives for the success of his chosen, is,

  1. They cry unto him day and night.
  • He is compassionate towards Them.
  • In consequence of the first, they might expect justice even from an unrighteous judge; and, in consequence of the second, they are sure of salvation, because they ask it from that God who is towards them a Father of eternal love and compassion. There was little reason to expect justice from the unrighteous judge.
    1. Because he was unrighteous; and
  • Because he had no respect for man: no, not even for a poor desolate widow.
  • But there is all the reason under heaven to expect mercy from God:
    1. Because he is righteous, and he has promised it; and
  • Because he is compassionate towards his creatures; being ever prone to give more than the most enlarged heart can request of him.
  • Every reader must perceive that the common translation is so embarrassed as to be almost unintelligible; while that in this note, from the above authorities, is as plain as possible, and shows this beautiful parable to be one of the most invaluable pieces in the word of God.

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    Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/luke-18.html. 1832.

    Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

    Shall not God avenge … - We are not to suppose that the character of God is at all represented by this judge, or that “his” principles of conduct are at all like those of the judge. This parable shows us conclusively that many “circumstances” of a parable are not to be interpreted closely: they are mere appendages to the narrative. The great truth which our Saviour “designed” to teach is what we ought to endeavor to find. In this case there can be no doubt what that truth is. He has himself told us that it is, that “men ought always to pray and not to faint.” This he teaches by the example in the parable; and the argument which it implies is this:

    1.A poor widow, by her perseverance only, obtained from an unjust man what otherwise she would “not” have obtained.

    2.God is not unjust. He is good, and disposed to do justice and to bestow mercy.

    If, therefore, this “wicked man” by persevering prayer was induced to do justice, how much more shall “God,” who is good, and who is not actuated by any such selfish and base principles, do justice to them who apply to him!

    Avenge - Do justice to or vindicate them. This may have a twofold reference.

    1. To the disciples in the time of Jesus, who were about to be oppressed and persecuted, and over whom calamities were about to come, “as if” God did not regard their cries and had forsaken them. To them Jesus gives the assurance that God “would” hear their petitions and come forth to vindicate them; and that, notwithstanding all these calamities, he would yet appear for their deliverance.

    2. It may have a more “general” meaning. The people of God are often oppressed, calumniated, persecuted. They are few in number and feeble. They seem to be almost forsaken and cast down, and their enemies triumph. Yet in due time God will hear their prayers, and will come forth for their vindication. And even if it should not be “in this life,” yet he will do it in the day of judgment, when he will pronounce them blessed, and receive them forever to himself.

    His own elect - People of God, saints, Christians; so called because God has “chosen” them to be his. The term is usually given in the Scriptures to the true followers of God, and is a term of affection, denoting his great and special love in choosing them out of a world of sinners, and conferring on them grace, and mercy, and eternal life. See 1 Thessalonians 1:4; Colossians 3:12; 1 Peter 1:2; Ephesians 1:4. It signifies here that they are especially dear to him; that he feels a deep interest in their welfare, and that he will, therefore, be ready to come forth to their aid. The judge felt no special interest in that widow, yet he heard her; God feels a particular regard, a tender love for his elect, and, therefore, he will hear and save.

    Which cry day and night - This expresses one striking characteristic of the elect of God; they pray, and pray constantly. No one can have evidence that he is chosen of God who is not a man of prayer. One of the best marks by which the electing love of God is known is that it disposes us to pray. This passage supposes that when the elect of God are in trouble and pressed down with calamities, they “will” cry unto him; and it affirms that if they do, he will hear their cries and answer their requests.

    Though he bear long with them - This passage has been variously interpreted, and there is some variety of reading in the manuscripts. Some read, “Will not God avenge his elect? Will he linger in their cause?” But the most natural meaning is, “Although he defers long to avenge them, and greatly tries their patience, yet he will avenge them.” He tries their faith; he suffers their persecutions and trials to continue a long time; and it almost “appears” as if he would not interpose. Yet he will do it, and will save them.

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    Bibliographical Information
    Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/luke-18.html. 1870.

    John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

    And shall not God avenge his own elect,.... Who are a select number, a special people, whom he has loved with an everlasting love, so as of his own sovereign good will and pleasure to choose in his Son Jesus Christ unto everlasting life and salvation, through certain ways and means of his own appointing, hence they are peculiarly his: and these he will avenge and vindicate, right their wrongs, do them justice, and deliver them from their adversaries, and take vengeance on them; as may be concluded from his hatred of sin, his justice, and his holiness, from his promises, and from his power, and from the efficacy of prayer, and the regard he has to it: for it follows,

    which cry unto him day and night; whose prayers he always hears; whose tears he puts up in his bottle; and whose importunity must surely be thought to have more regard with him, than that of the poor widow with the unjust judge:

    though he bear long with them? either with their adversaries, their oppressors, and persecutors, who are vessels of wrath, fitted for destruction, whom he endures with much longsuffering, till the sufferings of his people are accomplished, and the iniquities of these men are full; or rather with the elect, for the words may be rendered, "and is longsuffering towards them": delays his coming, and the execution of vengeance, as on the Jewish nation, so upon the whole world of the ungodly, till his elect are gathered in from among them; see 2 Peter 3:9.

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    The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
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    Bibliographical Information
    Gill, John. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/luke-18.html. 1999.

    Geneva Study Bible

    And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though d he bear long with them?

    (d) Though he seems slow in avenging the harm done to his own.
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    Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/luke-18.html. 1599-1645.

    Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

    shall not God — not unjust, but the infinitely righteous Judge.

    avenge — redeem from oppression.

    his own elect — not like this widow, the object of indifference and contempt, but dear to Him as the apple of the eye (Zechariah 2:8).

    cry day and night — whose every cry enters into the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth (James 5:4), and how much more their incessant and persevering cries!

    bear long with them — rather, “in their case,” or “on their account” (as) James 5:7, “for it”), [Grotius, Deuteronomy Wette, etc.].

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    This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.
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    Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/luke-18.html. 1871-8.

    John Lightfoot's Commentary on the Gospels

    7. And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them?

    [Though he bear long with them.] So 2 Peter 3:9, is longsuffering to us-ward. In both places the discourse is concerning the destruction of Jerusalem, and the times immediately preceding it; in which the Lord exercised infinite patience towards his elect. For in that slippery and unsteady state of theirs, when apostasy prevailed beyond measure, and it was a hard thing to abandon Judaism, people were very difficultly gained over to the faith, and as difficultly retained in it, when they had once embraced it. And yet, after all this longsuffering and patience, shall he find faith on earth?

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    Lightfoot, John. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". "John Lightfoot Commentary on the Gospels". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jlc/luke-18.html. 1675.

    Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament

    And he is longsuffering (μακροτυμειmakrothumei). This present active indicative comes in awkwardly after the aorist subjunctive ποιησηιpoiēsēi after ου μηou mē but this part of the question is positive. Probably καιkai here means “and yet” as so often (John 9:30; John 16:32, etc.). God delays taking vengeance on behalf of his people, not through indifference, but through patient forbearance.

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    The Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament. Copyright © Broadman Press 1932,33, Renewal 1960. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman Press (Southern Baptist Sunday School Board)
    Bibliographical Information
    Robertson, A.T. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rwp/luke-18.html. Broadman Press 1932,33. Renewal 1960.

    Vincent's Word Studies

    And shall not God

    The emphasis is on God. In the Greek order, “andGod, shall he not,” etc.

    Though he bear long with them

    A very difficult passage, and interpretations vary greatly.

    (1.) The verb μακροθυμέω means to be long-suffering, or to endure patiently. Such is its usual rendering in the New Testament.

    (2.) Them ( αὐτοῖς ) refers not to the persecutors of God's elect, but to the elect themselves. The Rev. cuts the knot by the most literal of renderings: “and he is long-suffering over ( ἐπι ) them.”

    (3.) The secondary meaning of restraining or delaying may fairly be deduced from the verb, and explained either (a) of delaying punishment, or (b) of delaying sympathy or help.

    The Am. Rev. adopts the former, and throws the sentence into the form of a question: “And is he slow to punish on their behalf” ( ἐπ ' αὐτοῖς )? I venture to suggest the following: Καὶ not infrequently has the sense of yet, or and yet. So Euripides' “Thou art Jove-born, and yet ( καὶ ) thy utterance is unjust “(“Helena,” 1147). Aristophanes: “O crown, depart, and joy go with thee: yet ( καὶ ) I part from thee unwillingly” (“Knights,” 1249). So John 9:30: “Ye know not from whence he is, and yet ( καὶ ) he hath opened my eyes.” John 16:32: “Ye shall leave me alone, and yet ( καὶ ) I am not alone,” etc. Render, then, “Shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry unto him day and night; yet he delayeth help on their behalf,” even as the unjust judge delayed to avenge the widow? Surely he will, and that ere long. This rendering, instead of contrasting God with the judge, carries out the parallel. The judge delays through indifference. God delays also, or seems to delay, in order to try his children's faith, or because his purpose is not ripe; but he, too, will do justice to the suppliant. Tynd., Yea, though he defer them.

    “He hides himself so wondrously,

    As though there were no God;

    He is least seen when all the powers

    Of ill are most abroad.

    O there is less to try our faith,

    In our mysterious creed,

    Than in the godless look of earth

    In these our hours of need.

    It is not so, but so it looks;

    And we lose courage then;

    And doubts will come if God hath kept

    His promises to men.”

    Faber.

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    Bibliographical Information
    Vincent, Marvin R. DD. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". "Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/vnt/luke-18.html. Charles Schribner's Sons. New York, USA. 1887.

    Wesley's Explanatory Notes

    And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them?

    And shall not God — The most just Judge, vindicate his own elect - Preserve the Christians from all their adversaries, and in particular save them out of the general destruction, and avenge them of the Jews? Though he bear long with them - Though he does not immediately put an end, either to the wrongs of the wicked, or the sufferings of good men.

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    These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.
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    Wesley, John. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/luke-18.html. 1765.

    The Fourfold Gospel

    And shall not God avenge his elect, that cry to him day and night1, and [yet] he is longsuffering over them?

    1. And shall not God avenge his elect, that cry to him day and night,
    2. and [yet] he is longsuffering over them? The application is an argument a fortiori, and presents a triple antithesis: (1) In the petitioned--a just God and an unrighteous judge. (2) In the petitioners --a despised widow and the beloved elect. (3) In the petition--the frequent visits of the one, and the continual cries of the many.

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    These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website. These files were made available by Mr. Ernie Stefanik. First published online in 1996 at The Restoration Movement Pages.
    Bibliographical Information
    J. W. McGarvey and Philip Y. Pendleton. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". "The Fourfold Gospel". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tfg/luke-18.html. Standard Publishing Company, Cincinnati, Ohio. 1914.

    Abbott's Illustrated New Testament

    His own elect; his own chosen friends.--Bear long with them; delay long to answer their prayers.

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    Abbott, John S. C. & Abbott, Jacob. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". "Abbott's Illustrated New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ain/luke-18.html. 1878.

    John Trapp Complete Commentary

    7 And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them?

    Ver. 7. Though he bear long with them] When they are at the utmost under. When their enemies are above fear, and they below hope; when there is not faith in earth to believe, then are there bowels in heaven to relieve and restore them.

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    Trapp, John. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/luke-18.html. 1865-1868.

    Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

    Luke 18:7. Though he bear long with them? "Though he seem to refrain himself for a while, to hold his peace, and afflict them very sore." Elsner would render this, Shall he not avenge his own elect, who cry to him and wait patiently for it? that is, for his appearance in their favour. Some understand this as referring to the wicked; "though God bear long with the wicked who oppress his people, and seem deaf to the cries which they send up to his throne, the just view which he has of their afflictions, will in due time move him to punish severely their enemies." The sentiment painted in this parable is very beautiful; namely, that, "if the repeated importunate cries of the afflicted, at length make an impression on the hearts even of men so wicked, as to glory in their impiety, injustice, and barbarity, they will much more be answered by God most gracious, who is ever ready to bestow his choicest blessings, when he sees his creatures fit to receive them." Arguments of this kind, taken from the feeble goodness, or eyed from the imperfections of men, to illustrate the superior and infinite perfections of God, were often made use of by our Lord, and with great success, in working the convictions designed. Such appeals where grace is yielded to, force their waydirectly to men's hearts, bear down all opposition, and make a lasting impression.

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    Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/luke-18.html. 1801-1803.

    Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary

    7.] The poor widow in this case (the forsaken Church, contending with her adversary the devil, 1 Peter 5:8) has this additional claim, in which the right of her cause consists,—that she is the Elect of God,—His Beloved.

    ἡμέρας κ. νυκτός] This answers to the πάντοτε in Luke 18:1, but is an amplification of it.

    κ. μακροθυμεῖ … and He delays his vengeance in their case:—and He, in their case, is long-suffering.Est in hac voce dilationis significatio, quæ ut debitori prodest, ita gravis est ei qui vim patitur.’ Grotius. The re(104). reading, μακροθυμῶν, conveys the same meaning, καί being understood as καίπερ. This is perhaps what the E. V. means by ‘though He bear long with them,’ which is ambiguous as it stands. The μακροθ. has no doubt a general reference also to God’s dealing with man: see 2 Peter 3:9; 2 Peter 3:15.

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    Alford, Henry. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hac/luke-18.html. 1863-1878.

    Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament

    Luke 18:7. θεὸς, God) Who is a most righteous Judge.— ποιήσῃ τὴν ἐκδίκησιν, effect the avenging of) These words are presently after repeated with the greatest force.— τῶν ἐκλεκτῶν αὐτοῦ, of His own elect) He is speaking of those elect in particular [besides the general truth taught by the parable] who were living at that time, and who were about to escape safe through the destruction of the city.— βοώντων, who cry) as being in great straits, to ask for their being avenged. [As being destitute of every other aid. This was the sacred anchor of David, Psalms 55:17-18.—V. g.]—[ ἡμέρας καὶ νυκτὸς, day and night) They severally cry night and day; but the cry of all, taken collectively, is undoubtedly altogether continuous, and never ceaseth.—V. g.]— μακροθυμεῖ) A striking reading [which, though the margin of the larger Edition judged it to be the inferior reading, is notwithstanding preferred to the other reading by the Germ. Version, which follows the margin of the Second Ed.—E. B.(198)] Any one may readily perceive the force of the construction (involved) in it: The elect cry to God, but God μακροθυμεῖ, bears long (delays the answer long), in their case (respecting them). The verb of the former member of the sentence in the text passes into the participle βοώντων, who cry; whilst the verb of the other member, μακροθυμεῖ, bears long (delays His purpose long), remains unmoved. I have brought together several examples of this construction, which has been assailed by many in all quarters, in my note on Mark 3:27. Moreover in this passage there is commended that long-suffering [long tarrying in executing His purpose] on the part of God, whereby He regards both the wrongs done by the wicked and the sufferings of the saints in such a way (comp. Isaiah 64:11-12) [Psalms 83:1-2] as that He does not immediately make an end of both, although men think that His wrath against the wicked and His compassion towards the saints require a most speedy end to be made. At length there is accomplished that which is said of the just, Sir. 35:22 (Al. 32:18), οὐδὲ μὴ μακροθυμήσει ἐπʼ αὐτοῖς κραταιός.

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    Bengel, Johann Albrecht. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jab/luke-18.html. 1897.

    Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

    See Poole on "Luke 18:2"

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    Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Luke 18:7". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/luke-18.html. 1685.

    Justin Edwards' Family Bible New Testament

    Shall not God avenge his own elect; the argument is from the less to the greater. If importunity had such power with an unjust judge, who cared not for the poor widow’s cause, how much more shall God, the just judge, who tenderly cares for his people, vindicate and deliver them from their foes? Cry day and night; pray daily, habitually.

    Though he bear long; though for a long time he delays to answer.

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    Edwards, Justin. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". "Family Bible New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/fam/luke-18.html. American Tract Society. 1851.

    Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible

    “And shall not God give justice to (avenge, deal justly with the case of) his elect, who cry to him day and night, and he is longsuffering over them (or ‘even though he wait a long time over them?’) ”

    Thus, says Jesus, ‘if even an unrighteous judge gives way before continual pleading, how much more we can be certain that God, the supremely righteous Judge, will listen to the voice, not of one who is just an unknown woman, but of those whom He has chosen Who are personally known to Him, when they cry to Him day and night.’ He may seem to delay, like the judge did. He may indeed wait for what seems to us a long time (another hint that the end will not come as soon as many expected). But of one thing we can be sure, justice will come. God’s way, which is what should be the great desire of His people, will triumph, and His people will prosper and be blessed.

    Note that Jesus’ description of God’s people as His elect comes regularly in relation to the second coming (Mark 13:20; Mark 13:22; Mark 13:27; Matthew 22:14; Matthew 24:31). The direction of our prayers as ‘the elect’ are therefore to be seen as having that in mind.

    ‘Day and night.’ Compare Luke 2:37. It is a picture of persistent prayer.

    ‘And He is longsuffering over them’, or ‘even though He wait a long time over them.’ Either is a possible translation. The verb can mean ‘to wait patiently’ (James 5:7), ‘to be dilatory or slow’, or ‘to be forbearing/longsuffering’ (Matthew 18:26; Matthew 18:29; 1 Corinthians 13:4; 1 Thessalonians 5:14; 2 Peter 3:9). We may see in it here a combination of the first and the third senses. It includes the thought of delaying in order to give people time to repent because He is longsuffering, and delaying in order finally to complete what He has purposed, because nothing short of whay He has purposed will do. He will not be satisfied until every one of His own is gathered in. The Shepherd is still busy. Other suggested translations are, ‘Is He slow to help them?’ (signifying, of course, that He is not), or, ‘Is He not patient with them?’ (signifying that He never gets tired of hearing the prayers of His children).

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    Pett, Peter. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". "Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible ". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pet/luke-18.html. 2013.

    Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

    7.His own elect—They are all this while his own and elect. That is, they are chosen; a choice; for so the word elect means. They are chosen according to God’s eternal purpose in Christ, and according to his foreknowledge of their meeting the conditions of election, namely, of faith, repentance, and perseverance.

    Cry day and night—Their prayer is earnest; for it is not an imprecation, nor a murmur, but a Godward ascending cry. That prayer mounts to his throne, for it arises day and night.

     

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    Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/luke-18.html. 1874-1909.

    Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament

    Luke 18:7. And shall not God, etc. Much more then, since God is not an unjust judge, since the widow is not a forsaken one, but his elect, will He hear importunate prayer. While this is applicable in a certain measure to every individual Christian, and to all bodies of Christians in every age, the main application is to the elect as a collective body, to the final release from her days of sorrow at the return of the Lord.

    Who cry to him day and night. An exhortation to importunate prayer, as well as a prediction that God’s elect will not fail to offer it.

    Though he is long-suffering in their behalf. God is in general long-suffering, but this is inappropriate here. ‘That He is long-suffering to His people is implied in the first part of the verse. The best sense seems to be: ‘though He is long-suffering,’ i.e., delays the vengeance just spoken of, ‘on their behalf,’ or ‘over them,’ either ‘on their case,’ or ‘on their account.’ The view that this is a separate question: Is He wont to delay with respect to them and their requests? seems to be opposed to the whole course of the parable. Delay may be ‘on their behalf,’ and the proper answer.

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    Schaff, Philip. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". "Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/scn/luke-18.html. 1879-90.

    The Expositor's Greek Testament

    Luke 18:7. , etc., will not God avenge, etc., the question implying strongly that He will, but the emphasis is rendered necessary by appearances to the contrary, which strongly try men’s faith in His good will—long delays in answering prayer which wear the aspect of indifference.— ., His elect: standing in a close relation, so named to support the previous assertion. But in the dark hour of trial it is difficult to extract comfort from the title. Then the doubt arises: is the idea of election not a delusion? What are we to the far-off Deity?— : from these words down to the end of the sentence ( ) is a single clause meant to define the situation of “the elect”. They are persons who keep crying to God day and night, while He seems to pay no heed to them, but delays action in their case, and in their interest. The words down to describe the need of Divine interference; those which follow describe the experience which tempts to doubt whether succour will be forthcoming.— : this verb means to be slow, leisurely, unimpulsive in temper, whether in punishing or in succouring, or in any other form of action. Instances of the use of the verb in the first-mentioned occur in 2 Maccabees 6:14 (cited by Pricaeus) and Sirach 35:22 ( , frequently quoted). In James 5:7 it is applied to the husbandman waiting for harvest. Here it is applied to God’s leisureliness in coming to the help of tried saints. The construction is of the Hebraistic type.

     

     

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    Nicol, W. Robertson, M.A., L.L.D. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". The Expositor's Greek Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/egt/luke-18.html. 1897-1910.

    E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

    And shall not God = And God, shall He not.

    not. Greek. ou me. App-105.

    elect: i.e. His own people.

    He bear long = He delayeth. The unjust judge delayed from selfish indifference. The righteous God may delay from a divinely all-wise purpose.

    with = over. Greek. epi. App-104. Not the same word as in verses: Luke 18:11, Luke 18:27.

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    Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/luke-18.html. 1909-1922.

    Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

    And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them?

    And shall not God - not like that unprincipled man, but the infinitely righteous "Judge of all the earth," And shall not God - not like that unprincipled man, but the infinitely righteous "Judge of all the earth,"

    Avenge - redeem from oppression, his own elect-who are not like this poor widow in the eye of that selfish wretch, the objects of indifference and contempt, but dear to Him as the apple of the eye (Zechariah 2:8).

    Which cry day and night unto him - whose every cry enters into the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth (James 5:4); and how much more their incessant and persevering cries,

    Though he bear long with them? [ kai (Greek #2532) makrothumoon (Greek #3114), or, according to the preferable reading, makrothumei (Greek #3114) ep' (Greek #1909) autois (Greek #846)]. This rendering is apt to perplex the English reader, to whose ear it fails to convey the obvious sense. The same expression is used in James 5:7 - "The farmer waitheth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it" [ makrothumoon (Greek #3114) ep' (Greek #1909) autoo (Greek #846)]. So we should, render it here, 'though he bear long for them,' or 'on their account;' that is, with their oppressors. It is not with His own elect that God has to bear in the case here supposed, but with those that oppress them. And the meaning is, that although He tolerates these oppressions for a long time, He will at length interpose in behalf of His own elect.

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    Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/luke-18.html. 1871-8.

    Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

    (7) And shall not God avenge his own elect?—There is at first something which jars on us in this choice of an extreme instance of human unrighteousness as a parable from which we are to learn the nature and the power of prayer. It is not as it was with the Unjust Steward, for there, according to the true interpretation of the parable, the unrighteous man stood for those who were relatively, at least, themselves unrighteous. It is a partial explanation that our Lord presses home upon the disciples an a fortiori argument. If reiterated entreaties prevail with men, whose character and wills are set against them, how much more with God, in whom character and will anticipate the prayer? Even so, however, we have the difficulty that the idea of prayer as prevailing, at last, through manifold repetitions, seems at variance with the teaching that condemns vain repetitions, on the ground that our Father knows our necessities before we ask Him. (See Note on Matthew 6:7.) May we not think that here, as elsewhere, there is an intentional assumption by our Lord of a stand-point which was not His own, but that of those whom He sought to teach? Even His disciples were thinking of God, not as their Father, who loved them, but as a far-off King, who needed to be roused to action. They called on Him in their afflictions and persecutions, and their soul fainted within them, and they became weary of their prayers. Might not the parable be meant (1) to teach such as these that from their own point of view their wisdom was to persevere in prayer, and (2) to lead them to reconsider the ground from which they had started? And the one result would in such a case lead on almost necessarily to the other. Prayer hag a marvellous self-purifying power, and the imperfect thoughts of God in which it may have had its beginning become clearer as it continues. It is one of the ever-recurring paradoxes of the spiritual life, that when we are most importunate we feel most strongly how little importunity is needed.

    Avenge his own elect.—Literally, work out His vengeance for, the Greek noun having the article. The “vengeance” is not, however, that of retaliation such as human passions seek for, but primarily the “vindication” of God’s elect, the assertion of their rights, and includes retribution upon others only so far as it is involved in this. (Comp. the use of the word in Romans 12:19; 2 Corinthians 7:11; Hebrews 10:30.) This is the first occurrence of the word “elect” in St. Luke’s Gospel, but it begins to be prominent about this time in our Lord’s teaching. (See Notes on Matthew 20:16; Matthew 24:22.) The “elect” are the disciples who being “called” obey the “call” (Romans 8:30). The further question, What leads them to obey? is not here in view.

    Which cry day and night unto him.—The words look to the coming trials and afflictions of the elect, which as yet the disciples knew not, or knew only in part. To see the world against them, and its rulers crushing them, to fight against overwhelming odds, this would tempt them to think that God was not with them, that He had deceived them. (Comp. the language of Jeremiah 20:7.) In the prayer of the souls beneath the altar (Revelation 6:10), we have an echo of the question. In St. Peter’s insistence on the “long-suffering” of God (2 Peter 3:9), we have a proof that he had learnt the answer.

    Though he bear long with them.—Literally, bearing long with them. The better MSS. give “and bear long with them.” The English, which suggests the thought that God bears with, i.e., tolerates, His elect, is misleading. What is meant is, that He shows Himself slow to anger “over them,” i.e., where they are concerned. They implore that “long-suffering” for themselves. They are tempted to murmur when it is extended to others.

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    Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/luke-18.html. 1905.

    Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

    And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them?
    shall
    11:13; Matthew 7:11
    avenge
    1 Samuel 24:12-15; 26:10,11; Psalms 9:8; 10:15-18; 54:1-7; Jeremiah 20:11-13; 2 Thessalonians 1:6; Revelation 6:10; 18:20
    which
    2:37; Psalms 88:1; 1 Thessalonians 3:10; 1 Timothy 5:5; 2 Timothy 1:3; Revelation 7:15
    though
    Psalms 13:1,2; Habakkuk 2:3; Hebrews 10:35-37
    Reciprocal: Exodus 22:23 - they cry at all;  Deuteronomy 32:35 - the things;  Joshua 10:13 - until;  2 Samuel 4:8 - the Lord;  2 Samuel 18:31 - the Lord;  1 Kings 8:28 - Yet have thou;  1 Kings 18:43 - Go again;  2 Kings 9:7 - I may avenge;  2 Kings 13:24 - Hazael;  Nehemiah 1:6 - day and night;  Nehemiah 5:1 - a great cry;  Esther 8:13 - avenge themselves;  Job 1:5 - continually;  Psalm 1:2 - day;  Psalm 6:3 - how;  Psalm 9:12 - he forgetteth;  Psalm 10:18 - judge;  Psalm 22:2 - I cry;  Psalm 25:5 - on thee;  Psalm 86:3 - for I;  Isaiah 5:7 - a cry;  Isaiah 34:8 - GeneralIsaiah 40:27 - my judgment;  Isaiah 42:14 - long time;  Isaiah 60:22 - I the Lord;  Jeremiah 15:15 - remember;  Joel 1:19 - to thee;  Joel 3:4 - swiftly;  Mark 13:27 - his elect;  Luke 18:3 - Avenge;  Acts 9:11 - for;  Romans 8:33 - of God's;  Philippians 4:6 - in;  Colossians 3:12 - as;  1 Thessalonians 2:9 - night;  James 5:4 - the cries;  1 Peter 1:2 - Elect;  2 Peter 3:9 - is not

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    Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/luke-18.html.

    Commentary by J.C.Philpot on select texts of the Bible

    Luke 18:7

    "And shall not God avenge his own elect, who cry day and night unto him?" Luke 18:7

    "Behold, he prays," was the word of the Lord to Ananias to convince him that that dreaded persecutor, Saul of Tarsus, had been quickened by the Spirit. And what a mercy it is for the quickened soul that the blessed Spirit thus helps his sinking, trembling spirit, puts life and energy into his cries and sighs, holds him up and keeps him steadfast at the throne, and thus enables him to persevere with his earnest suings for mercy, mingles faith with his petitions, and himself most graciously and kindly intercedes within him and for him with groanings which cannot be uttered. This is "praying with the spirit" ( 1 Corinthians 14:15) and "in the Holy Spirit" ( Jude 1:20). This is pouring out the heart before God ( Psalm 62:8), pouring out the soul before the Lord ( 1 Samuel 1:15); and by this free discharge of the contents of an almost bursting heart, sensible relief is given to the burdened spirit.

    By this special Mark, the convictions of a quickened soul are distinguished from the pangs of guilt and remorse which are sometimes aroused in the natural conscience. Cain said, "My punishment is greater than I can bear," but there was neither repentance nor prayer in his heart; for "he went out from the presence of the Lord "—the very presence which the living soul is seeking to reach and be found in, and into which the Spirit brings him ( Ephesians 2:18).

    Saul was "sore distressed," when God answered him, "neither by dreams, nor by Urim, nor by prophets," but he goes to the witch of Endor, and in the end falls upon his own sword. Judas repented of his accursed treachery, but went and hanged himself. No prayer, no supplication was in either of their hearts. So it is prophesied that men shall gnaw their tongues for pain, and yet shall blaspheme the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, and not repent of their deeds ( Revelation 16:10-11). But the elect cry day and night unto God; and their prayers, perfumed with the incense of their all-prevailing Intercessor at the right hand of the Father, enter into the ears of the Lord of Sabbath.

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    Philpot, Joseph Charles. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". Commentary by J.C.Philpot on select texts of the Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jcp/luke-18.html.

    Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

    7.And shall not God avenge his elect? That judge, whom Christ has described to us as altogether desperate, as not only hardened against the contemplation of God, but so entirely devoid of shame, that he had no anxiety about his reputation, at length opened his eyes to the distresses of the widow We have no reason to doubt that believers will derive, at least, equal advantage from their prayers, provided they do not cease to plead earnestly with God. Yet it must be observed that, while Christ applies the parable to his subject, he does not make God to resemble a wicked and cruel judge, but points out a very different reason why those who believe in him are kept long in suspense, and why he does not actually and at once stretch out his hand to them: it is because he forbears If at any time God winks at the injuries done to us longer than we would wish, let us know that this is done with a fatherly intention—to train us to patience. A temporary overlooking of crimes is very different from allowing them to remain for ever unpunished. The promise which he makes, that God will speedily avenge them, must be referred to his providence; for our hasty tempers and carnal apprehension lead us to conclude that he does not come quickly enough to grant relief. But if we could penetrate into his design, we would learn that his assistance is always ready and seasonable, as the case demands, and is not delayed for a single moment, but comes at the exact time.

    But it is asked, How does Christ instruct his disciples to seek vengeance, while he exhorts them on another occasion, pray for those who injure and persecute you, (Matthew 5:44.) I reply: what Christ says here about vengeance does not at all interfere with his former doctrine. God declares that he will avenge believers, not for the purpose of giving a loose rein to their carnal affections, but in order to convince them that their salvation is dear and precious in his sight, and in this manner to induce them to rely on his protection. If, laying aside hatred, pure and free from every wicked desire of revenge, and influenced by proper and well-regulated dispositions, they implore divine assistance, it will be a lawful and holy wish, and God himself will listen to it. But as nothing is more difficult than to divest ourselves of sinful affections, if we would offer pure and sincere prayers, we must ask the Lord to guide and direct our hearts by his Spirit. Then shall we lawfully call on God to be our avenger, and he will answer our prayers.

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    Calvin, John. "Commentary on Luke 18:7". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/luke-18.html. 1840-57.