Parable of the Friend at Night facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
(Redirected from The Importunate Neighbour)
Teachings of Jesus 17 of 40. ask and ye shall receive. Jan Luyken etching. Bowyer Bible
Illustration by Jan Luyken, from Robert Bowyer's edition of the Bible.

The Parable of the Friend at Night (Importunate Neighbour), is a parable of Jesus written in the New Testament in Luke 11:5-8. A man refuses to help his neighbour during an emergency at midnight. His neighbour persists in asking until he changes his mind.

What Jesus said

The parable:

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.

Luke 11:5-8

Based on the Parable of the Ten Virgins, the unexpected arrival of the neighbour's guest at midnight could mean it is Jesus himself.

What it means

3 Asking to Give
Anonymous artist hired by Pacific Press Publishing Co., 1900

Jesus told this parable after he taught his disciples how to pray the Lord's Prayer.

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.

The parable is therefore an incentive to pray. The parable of the Unjust Judge has a similar meaning.

Depictions

Importunate neighbour
William Holman Hunt's painting of The Importunate Neighbour (1895).

The most famous depiction of this parable is The Importunate Neighbour (1895) by William Holman Hunt, kept at the National Gallery of Victoria, Australia.


Parable of the Friend at Night Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.