The Friend at Midnight – The Holy Spirit. A disciple asked Jesus to teach them to pray. Jesus taught an outline of what prayer is to consist. After those instructions, Jesus gave this example of prayer. Suppose one of you has a friend, and he goes to him at midnight

THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO LUKE CHAPTER 11

The Friend at Midnight – Luke 11:5-13

by Pastor Delbert Young

 The Friend at Midnight - The Holy Spirit

The Friend at Midnight Luke 11:5-13 – sorry, no video or audio

Scriptures: Luke 11:5-10; Luke 11:11-13; Luke 11:13; Ephesians 5:18; John 16:13; John 16:8; Galatians 5:22-23; Luke 12:12; Romans 8:26; Philippians 3:3

Luke 11:5-10 Then he said to them, “Suppose one of you has a friend, and he goes to him at midnight and says, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread, because a friend of mine on a journey has come to me, and I have nothing to set before him.’ “Then the one inside answers, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is already locked, and my children are with me in bed. I can’t get up and give you anything.’ I tell you, though he will not get up and give him the bread because he is his friend, yet because of the man’s boldness he will get up and give him as much as he needs. “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.

According to the majority of teachings I read and studied, God is like a neighbor who won’t get up from bed for me when I need such simple things as three little pancakes to feed a friend. God’s bolted the door and doesn’t want to disturb anyone because of me. God says, “I can’t get up and give you anything.” To get God to move, I must be bold (KJV importunity) and continue beating on God’s door until he finally gives me three pancakes. Does this sound right to you? To me, there is something off here.

The word translated boldness or importunity in KJV is anaideia {an-ah’-ee-die-ah’} meaning shamelessness, impudence (audacity). Rather than this meaning we yell at God and tell God what to do, I see it meaning being up front with God being clear about exactly what we want. What we want matters to God. We go to God with what might seem small to us like pancakes.

Though there have been times in my walk with God when I prayed about something several times, if all I did was pray I never recall anything changing. What I believe the Lord is teaching here is once you’ve prayed it’s time for you to do something.

For example, if I prayed about a job, but never went asking, seeking, and knocking, I doubt I will ever get the job I prayed about. The employer isn’t likely to come to my house looking for me. If a man or woman is praying for a good spouse to marry, there are some things they will need to do other than only pray. There are some hygiene issues. There are some morality issues. There are some financial issues, etc.

We must, with boldness, do some asking, seeking, and knocking at the places where our pancakes are located. Jesus tells us Father wants to give us the best, but we have a part to do as well.

Luke 11:11-13 “Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”

Jesus goes back to the understanding of his “Father” teaching from verses 2-4. Father God is a good Father, but no father, good or bad, would give a child a snake to eat when they asked for a fish. The child is hungry and wants a piece of fish. Fish was the common meat. No father would give a scorpion when asked for an egg. The thought is though with a corrupt heart the father provides the needs even though it is probably the mother actually giving it. A corrupt father provides good gifts. Imagine what the perfect Father will give and the greatest gift Father God will give is the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is more than a good gift. This is the most amazing gift of all.

It’s one thing to go to a friend’s house at midnight, although I truly believe any person I call friend would help me even at midnight. The thought is friendship goes so far. People want friends, but unless you’re the one needing pancakes you don’t want a lot of friends at midnight. With a father, it doesn’t matter if it’smidnight. Years back we were coming back from Disney World. It was late at night probably past midnight and my battery went dead. I called my dad. He didn’t reluctantly get out of bed to help. He hurriedly got out of bed to help and was shortly there helping me.

Even parents who are evil, and we all have done evil things and thought evil thoughts, but even evil parents know how to give, and have given, good gifts to their children. Even evil fathers will put their children through school. Even evil fathers leave an inheritance. Even evil fathers give their children gifts at Christmas. So, if an evil father can know how to give good gifts to their children, how much more will your perfect Father in heaven give good things, even the ultimate gift of the Holy Spirit, to his children who ask him?

I want to make a comment here. Jesus said, “If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children…” Parents, give good gifts to your children. Sometimes we cop out on giving good gifts by saying we will spoil our children. It’s ok to spoil your children as long as they don’t act spoiled and remain appreciative. Judy, my wife, has always taken care of the gift giving. She picks it out and we’ve always given good gifts. When I was a child, my parents didn’t have much money. I always wore second hand clothes. I remember in high school, I had one pair of pants and two shirts. (I’ve come a long way.) Much later, one Thanksgiving just before my mom died, she was at my house visiting. She was ill, reflective, and talking to Judy. She complimented Judy as to how Judy always made certain our children had nice name brand clothes and nice things. Then she said, “I could have done better providing Delbert Ray with better clothes. It wouldn’t have cost that much. I could have done better.” Of course, Judy said, “Well, he has lots of clothes now.” Here’s my point. You will never regret giving good gifts to your children, but you will regret not giving good giftsto your children.

This is what Jesus is teaching. Father God will never regret giving you the best. If parents like to give good gifts, imagine your heavenly Father and the kind of gifts he wants to give with the greatest gift of all being the Holy Spirit.

Luke 11:13 If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your FATHER IN HEAVEN GIVE THE HOLY SPIRIT TO THOSE WHO ASK HIM!”

The disciple asked, “Lord teach us to pray.” Jesus said ok, you will need the Holy Spirit. Father desires to give us the Holy Spirit. We’ve recently concluded a short series called “Come Holy Spirit.” There’s something I want to point out here to make certain we see. We are taught we receive the Holy Spirit when we accept Jesus, right? Then why does the Father want to give us the Holy Spirit separately? Jesus didn’t say your Father in heaven will give you Jesus and by so doing you will have the Holy Spirit.

Ephesians 5:18 And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit

The apostle Paul writing to believers in Ephesus instructs them to be filled with the Spirit. There is an aspect here of asking, seeking, and knocking concerning the Holy Spirit. Certainly we don’t have to beg for the Holy Spirit. However, there is a desire we express to God for this gift. It’s simply asking Father for the presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives. What does that mean and what do you get? I certainly can’t talk about everything, but we can be certain it is good. One thing the passage shows us is we won’t ask for a good thing from God and get a bad thing. People are afraid sometimes they will ask for the Holy Spirit, but get a snake or a scorpion.

John 16:13 But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, HE WILL GUIDE YOU INTO ALL TRUTH. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.

How many want to know the truth? To know the truth and to know the truth about what is to come, we need the presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives. Do you believe the Holy Spirit knows the truth? He does. Jesus said he will reveal it to us.

John 16:8 When he comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment:

You personally may not want to be convicted of your sin, but would you want your children or spouse to be convicted of their sins? Would that not be amazing if you prayed with the Holy Spirit about your child, they were convicted and stopped doing the sin? What if you have a sinful habit and asked the Holy Spirit to help you. You said, “Holy Spirit, I’ve been battling this for years. Help me see it the way you see, feel about it the way you feel, and break free from it the way you want me to.” Do you think the Holy Spirit would answer your prayer? Wives don’t nag your husband. It won’t work anyway. Put the Holy Spirit on him. I’ve watched this happen and this does work.

Galatians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

We could all use a little more of these.

Luke 12:12 for the Holy Spirit will teach you at that time what you should say.”

Do you ever not know what to say? Someone is depending upon you for a direction, or an answer, but you don’t know what to say. Perhaps you have a family situation with your child. You are at your wits end. Say, “Holy Spirit help me say what I need to say.” I ask the Holy Spirit to help me as I share on Sundays or at meetings. I want to say what I need to say and I want to say it the way I need to say it. I need to say it with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

Romans 8:26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express.

Ever not even know what to pray? I have lots of those times. This is when I pray in tongues – in my prayer language. The Holy Spirit himself intercedes. How amazing is that! The Holy Spirit takes my confusion to the Father.

Philippians 3:3 …we who worship by the Spirit of God, who glory in Christ Jesus, and who put no confidence in the flesh

Ever just not feel worship? Perhaps you had a bad morning. You’re aggravated about something. Your flesh is struggling. Then worship by the Spirit of God. Say, “Spirit of God help me. I know if you help me, I will worship the glory of Christ Jesus. I will worship the Father and I will give and receive what I should in my worship.”

In summary, when the Father gives you the Holy Spirit, he’s given you everything. There is more resource in the Holy Spirit than imaginable. More than you can ask or think.

Other Related Sermons:

Greed – How to be a Successful Fool – video audio notes Luke 12:10-21

Lost Coin and The Amazing Father – video audio notes Luke 15:8-24

Lord Teach Us To Pray pt 2 – video audio notes Luke 11:1-4

Also see:

Sermons Change The World

Life Gate Church sermons by Delbert Young