Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Whole Bible
back to: Luke
Book: Luke
Chapter: 11

The disciples taught to pray. (1-4) Christ encourages being
Earnest in Prayer. (5-13) Christ casts out a Devil, The
Blasphemy of the Pharisees. (14-26) True happiness. (27,28)
Christ reproves the Jews. (29-36) He reproves the Pharisees.

1-4 "Lord, teach us to pray," is a good Prayer, and a very
needful one, for Jesus Christ only can teach us, By his Word and
Spirit, how to pray. Lord, teach me what it is to pray; Lord,
stir up and quicken me to the duty; Lord, direct me what to pray
for; teach me what I should say. Christ taught them a Prayer,
much the same that he had given before in his sermon upon the
Mount. There are some differences in the words of the Lord's
Prayer in Matthew and in Luke, but they are of No moment. Let us
in our requests, both for others and for ourselves, come to our
heavenly Father, confiding in his power and Goodness.

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.

14-26 Christ's thus casting out the devils, was really the
destroying of their power. The Heart of every unconverted sinner
is the Devil's Palace, where he dwells, and where he rules.
There is a kind of peace in the Heart of an unconverted soul,
while the Devil, as a strong Man armed, keeps it. The sinner is
secure, has No doubt concerning the Goodness of his state, nor
any dread of the Judgment to come. But observe the wonderful
change made in Conversion. The Conversion of a soul to God, is
Christ's victory over the Devil and his power in that soul,
restoring the soul to its liberty, and recovering his own
interest in it and power over it. All the endowments of mind of
body are now employed for Christ. Here is the condition of a
Hypocrite. The House is swept from common sins, By a forced
Confession, as Pharaoh's; By a feigned contrition, as Ahab's; or
By a partial reformation, as Herod's. The House is swept, but it
is not washed; the Heart is not made holy. Sweeping takes off
only the loose dirt, while the Sin that besets the sinner, the
beloved Sin, is untouched. The House is garnished with common
Gifts and graces. It is not furnished with any true Grace; it is
all Paint and varnish, not real nor lasting. It was never given
up to Christ, nor dwelt in By the Spirit. Let us take heed of
resting in that which a Man may have, and yet come short of
Heaven. The wicked spirits enter in without any difficulty; they
are welcomed, and they Dwell there; there they work, there they
rule. From such an awful state let all earnestly pray to be

27,28 While the Scribes and Pharisees despised and blasphemed
the discourses of our Lord Jesus, this good Woman admired them,
and the Wisdom and power with which he spake. Christ led the
Woman to a higher consideration. Though it is a great privilege
to hear the Word of God, yet those only are truly blessed, that
is, blessed of the Lord, that hear it, keep it in memory, and
keep to it as their way and rule.

29-36 Christ promised that there should be one sign more given,
even the sign of Jonah the Prophet; which in Matthew is
explained, as meaning the Resurrection of Christ; and he warned
them to improve this sign. But though Christ himself were the
constant preacher in any Congregation, and worked miracles daily
among them, yet unless his Grace humbled their hearts, they
would not profit By his Word. Let us not desire more evidence
and Fuller teaching than the Lord is pleased to afford us. We
should pray without ceasing that our hearts and understandings
may be opened, that we may profit By the Light we enjoy. And
especially take heed that the Light which is in us be not
Darkness; for if our leading principles be wrong, our Judgment
and practice must become more So.

37-54 We should all look to our hearts, that they may be
cleansed and new-created; and while we attend to the great
things of the Law and of the Gospel, we must not neglect the
smallest matter God has appointed. When any wait to catch
something out of our mouths, that they may ensnare us, O Lord,
give us thy prudence and thy patience, and disappoint their evil
purposes. Furnish us with such Meekness and patience that we may
Glory in reproaches, for Christ's sake, and that thy Holy Spirit
may Rest upon us.