Then Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do.”
In the first of the Seven Sayings of the Saviour on the Cross, Pink comments on Jesus’s words in Luke 23:34. I didn’t even get through the entire chapter this morning, but this paragraph was an encouragement to me. I’m sure we all have someone on our prayer list for whom we have been especially burdened, possibly for many years. Pink encourages us to not lose hope but to remember Christ’s example in praying for those who seemed (from an earthly perspective) beyond hope.
In praying for His enemies not only did Christ set before us a perfect example of how we should treat those who wrong and hate us, but He also taught us never to regard any as beyond the reach of prayer. If Christ prayed for His murderers then surely we have encouragement to pray now for the very chief of sinners! Christian reader, never lose hope. Does it seem a waste of time for you to continue praying for that man, that woman, that wayward child of yours? Does their case seem to become more hopeless every day? Does it look as though they had gotten beyond the reach of Divine mercy? Perhaps that one you have prayed for so long has been ensnared by one of the Sata*nic cults of the day, or he may now be an avowed and blatant infidel, in a word, an open enemy of Christ. Remember then the Cross. Christ prayed for His enemies. Learn then not to look on any as beyond the reach of prayer.