The 37-year-old left-hander was unbeaten on a pugnacious 88 to help his team reach 188-4 at lunch on the fourth day, leaving the tourists needing another 91 runs to avoid an innings defeat.
Shivnarine Chanderpaul (43) was the other unbeaten batsman at the break and together with his captain has added 87 runs for the unbroken fifth wicket stand.
Lara -- who made the record highest individual Test score of 400 not out against England two years ago -- lived up to his reputation and batted with guts on a weary pitch.
Pakistan's only success came in the eighth over of the day, when paceman Shahid Nazir had nightwatchman Fidel Edwards caught by Younis Khan in the slips. Edwards made 10.
Lara survived a sharp chance when Mohammad Hafeez failed to hold on to a low catch at gully off fast bowler Umar Gul on 48.
The Windies captain capitalized on the chance and straight drove Gul for his eighth boundary to reach his 49th Test 50. He has so far hit 13 boundaries during his 267-minute stay at the crease.
Chanderpaul, who made only five in West Indies first innings score of 206, survived some anxious moments before playing second fiddle to Lara.
Gul, who took 5-65 in the first innings, was the pick of the home bowlers with 2-71.