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Summary: Sin had ravaged this woman’s life and she came to Jesus in desparation, in adoration, and in humiliation.

Series: Character Studies

A Lesson in Faith From a Faithful Mother

Matthew 15:21-28

Intro: When Robert Ingersoll the notorious skeptic, was in his heyday, two college students went to hear him lecture. As the walked down the street after the lecture, one said to the other, “Well, I guess he knocked the props out from under Christianity, didn’t he?” The other said, “No, I don’t think he did. Ingersoll did not explain my mother’s life, and until he can explain my mother’s life, I will stand by my mother’s God.

James S. Hewett, Illustrations Unlimited, Tyndale, 1972, pg. 38

By the way, there is a great deal of difference between a strong woman and a woman of strength.

I found this article this week:

 A strong woman works out every day to keep her body in shape, but a woman of strength kneels in prayer to keep her soul in shape.

 A strong woman isn’t afraid of anything, but a woman of strength shows her courage in the midst of fear.

 A Strong woman won’t let anyone get the best of her, but a woman of strength gives the best of her to everyone.

 A strong woman walks sure-footedly, but a woman of strength knows God will catch her when she falls.

 A strong woman wears the look of confidence on her face, but a woman of strength wears grace.

 A strong woman has faith that she is strong enough fot he journey, but a woman of strength has the faith that in the journey she will become strong.

Pulpit Helps, author unknown

And it is exactly that that separates the strong woman from the woman of strength.


I’m sure we could fill this hour with testimonies of godly mothers and examples of faith.

But the passage that we read this morning carries lessons to everyone not just mothers.

Returning to our series of Characters of the Bible, this message was a bit difficult to title, because we don’t even know this mother’s name.

By the way, everyone doesn’t have to recognize your name in order for you to have an impact on this world. I know of no more influential person than a mother.

Many scholars have concluded that you cannot really understand John Wesley unless you understand his mother, Susanna Wesley.

Abraham Lincoln Stated (and I paraphrase), “All that I am or ever hope to be, I owe to my mother.”

What a treasure a godly mother is.

I can remember sometime ago when I was going through a particularly rough period in my life, I called my mother. When she answered the phone, I could tell she had been weeping. I said “Is everything alright mom? What were you doing?” She replied, “Oh, I was just in my bedroom praying for my son.”

How effectual are the prayers of a godly mother.

I have seen my dear wife labor in prayer over her children.

I doubt there is a mother present here who has not done the same.

The title of my message this morning is simply…

A Lesson in Faith From a Faithful Mother

This was not some bigger than life figure. It was just a mother who loved her daughter.

So she came to the only person that she knew could help—Jesus Christ.

I see three things about her approach to Jesus.


Sin had ravaged the life of her daughter.

By the way, sin always takes it’s toll.

This young lady might have thought she knew what she was doing.

I can imagine that her mother saw the warning signs and began to plead with her to turn back to God.

But the daughter had everything under control—she thought.

This mother was at her wits end.

I can imagine she had tried everything that she knew to help her demon possessed daughter.

I can imagine she had contacted

 The rabbi

 The priest

 The Pharisees

 The Sadducees

No one had been able to help her.

So she comes at last to Jesus Christ

There were at two major barriers that she had to overcome.

1. She was a woman

In this time period, women were considered no more than property.

By the way, to those feminist who think that Christianity is hostile to women, they need to understand that it was Christ who changed the world’s attitude toward women.


 Mary & Martha – it was unheard of at that time for a man to have this kind of a friendship with a woman.

 Woman at the well

 Mary Magdalene at the tomb.

The question then comes to mind, “Why then did Jesus ignore this woman at first?”

We’ll get to that in just a moment.

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