Confirmation Questions 10-20-13

This week’s sermon came from Luke 18:1-8, the parable of the Judge and the Widow. You can find my sermon here.

As usual, the confirmation student’s posed some great questions in their sermon notes. I’ll address them here.

-Why didn’t the judge [in the parable] want to help the widow?
We don’t know exactly why the judge refused (for a time) to help the widow. We do know that he had no respect for God or for other people, so we can assume that he simply didn’t care at all about the widow or her grievance. Also, it is important to note that widows at the time had no legal rights. As her husband was dead, she was on her own. Only men had legal standing at the time, and unless a man came with her to represent her before the judge, the judge didn’t have to do anything for her, even if she her grievance against the unknown opponent was valid.  What Jesus seems to be saying in the parable is that her persistence in coming before the judge wore him down and finally he helped her, though only because he wanted her to stop coming to him with the same complaint.

-What is a widow?
A widow is a woman whose husband has died. In Jesus’ time, being a widow was very difficult. As I mentioned in the last question, women had no legal standing. They couldn’t own property. When a woman’s husband died, she would typically be cared for in the household of one of her sons. But if she had no sons then she could quickly become destitute with no way to care for herself. Widows often became beggars because of this situation.

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