Luke 11:6
For a friend of mine in his journey is come to me, and I have nothing to set before him?
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11:5-13 Christ encourages fervency and constancy in prayer. We must come for what we need, as a man does to his neighbour or friend, who is kind to him. We must come for bread; for that which is needful. If God does not answer our prayers speedily, yet he will in due time, if we continue to pray. Observe what to pray for; we must ask for the Holy Spirit, not only as necessary in order to our praying well, but as all spiritual blessings are included in that one. For by the influences of the Holy Spirit we are brought to know God and ourselves, to repent, believe in, and love Christ, and so are made comfortable in this world, and meet for happiness in the next. All these blessings our heavenly Father is more ready to bestow on every one that asks for them, than an indulgent parent is to give food to a hungry child. And this is the advantage of the prayer of faith, that it quiets and establishes the heart in God.And he said unto them ... - Jesus proceeds to show that, in order to obtain the blessing, it was necessary to "persevere" in asking for it. For this purpose he introduces the case of a friend's asking bread of another for one who had come to him unexpectedly. His design is solely to show the necessity of being "importunate" or persevering in prayer to God.

At midnight - A time when it would be most inconvenient for his friend to help him; an hour when he would naturally be in bed and his house shut.

Three loaves - There is nothing particularly denoted by the number "three" in this place. Jesus often threw in such particulars merely to fill up the story, or to preserve the consistency of it.

My children are with me in bed - This does not necessarily mean that they were in the "same bed" with him, but that they were "all" in bed, the house was still, the door was shut, and it was troublesome for him to rise at that time of night to accommodate him. It should be observed, however, that the customs of Orientals differ in this respect from our own. Among them it is not uncommon indeed it is the common practice for a whole family - parents, children, and servants - to sleep in the same room. See "The Land and the Book," vol. i. p. 180. This is "not" to be applied to God, as if it were troublesome to him to be sought unto, or as if "he" would ever reply to a sinner in that manner. All that is to be applied to God in this parable is simply that it is proper to "persevere" in prayer. As a "man" often gives because the request is "repeated," and as one is not discouraged because the favor that he asks of his neighbor is "delayed," so God often answers us after long and importunate requests.

5-8. at midnight … for a friend is come—The heat in warm countries makes evening preferable to-day for travelling; but "midnight" is everywhere a most unseasonable hour of call, and for that very reason it is here selected. See Poole on "Luke 11:5"

For a friend of mine in his journey,.... Or "out of the way"; having lost his way, being benighted; and has rambled about for some time, and at length,

is come to me; for lodging and entertainment:

and I have nothing to set before him; to refresh him with, after such a fatigue, before he goes to bed, which was very requisite and proper.

For a friend of mine in his journey is come to me, and I have nothing to set before him?
Luke 11:6. οὐκ ἔχω: this does not necessarily imply poverty: bread for the day was baked every morning. It is rather to be wondered at that a man with a family of children (Luke 11:7) had any over.

6. I have nothing to set before him] Even the deepest poverty was not held to excuse any lack of the primary Eastern virtue of hospitality. Allegorically we may see here the unsatisfied hunger of the soul, which wakens in the midnight of a sinful life.

Luke 11:6. Φίλος, a friend) Therefore the service which we owe towards others may be alleged in prayer as a ground for being heard.

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