April 21, 2023 By dwayman

“The Sign of Immanuel”
Isaiah 7:10-17
April 16, 2023
Rev. Colleen Hurley-Bates
Free Methodist Church of Santa Barbara

Our passage this week in Isaiah 7 brought to mind a parable Jesus told found in Luke 11. It is about persistence in prayer. Here is the main gist: You have a friend who has arrived at midnight and you have no food to give them. So you go to another friend’s home and knock on the door, telling them of your dilemma. This friend, whom you have ostensibly awakened says, “Don’t bother me. I am in bed, my whole household is in bed, and I can’t help you.” Jesus then says, “I tell you the truth, if you are persistent, your friend will get out of bed and give you what you need.” Then, Jesus tells us to ask because it will be given to us, search and we will find, knock and the door will be opened to us. If your child asks you for something good, would you give them something to harm them? No. How much more will your heavenly father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask. (notice it doesn’t say, God will give you what you want. It says you will receive THE SPIRIT.)

This parable is an interesting one. When we read it, it often troubles us how this is about never giving up on prayer,