Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: Faith that moved Jesus

Mathew 15: 21-28 “Leaving that place, Jesus withdrew to the region of Tyre and Sidon. A Canaanite woman from that vicinity came to him, crying out, "Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me! My daughter is suffering terribly from demon-possession."

Jesus did not answer a word. So his disciples came to him and urged him, "Send her away, for she keeps crying out after us."

He answered, "I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel."

The woman came and knelt before him. "Lord, help me!" she said.

He replied, "It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to their dogs."

"Yes, Lord," she said, "but even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table."

Then Jesus answered, "Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted." And her daughter was healed from that very hour.

The above parable about the Canaanite woman really touched me. Even though the response was not favourable in the beginning, she did not give up her faith. Her faith was very strong that it even moved Jesus. It teaches us a great lesson. We should not be discouraged in any circumstances. Believe in Jesus and continue our prayer till we get the answer.

She was very much worried about her daughter. She may have met many specialist doctors. She may have visited different holy places for the deliverance. May have done different kinds of worship suggested by the religious priests. May have spent lot of money for the medicine and worship. She considered all the suggestions made by peoples surrounded her. There may be lot of suggestions from different people as we also have a suggestion for anything.

Then she heard another suggestion that there is one who is healing the sick, giving sight to the blind, Curing the leper and feeding 5000 etc. etc. But the problems was that she has to go to another religion.

As per her knowledge, she was belonged to a prominent and ancient cast which was not associated with the Jews in any way. Come forward to pray to a God other than her own religion, that is also in front of her own religious people, is the first bold step she took. She left the god of her forefathers. She left the traditional worship of her religion which was followed by her forefathers for many generations. She left the traditional worship place (building) which is meant for worshiping her god. Different gods are there to worship on different purpose and occasions. Her own religious people may be accusing her for praying to a foreign God. Her family members also may not be happy with her newfound God. The people who belongs to her religion were eagerly waiting for the outcome of her prayer as they have kept enmity with the Jews for generations. There is no one there to support her. Family, neighbors, religious community, all are against her. Still she took her first step. To pray to a foreign God. With great hope for the deliverance from the evil spirit. Unfortunately there was no response at the first.

“Jesus did not answer a word.”

She was not discouraged by Jesus silence. She continued her pleading for deliverance. Now the people around her may be accusing her for going to a foreign God. She could have think that why should I pray any more as He is not responding. It is better to stop here than to ridiculed by the family members, neighbors and religious people latter. She did not stop at there. She continued her pleading all the more with a great hope.

So his disciples came to him and urged him, "Send her away, for she keeps crying out after us."

Jesus disciples got disturbed by the pleading of this woman. They brought the matter to Jesus, so that she may leave them. His disciples were also not so concerned about the woman or her daughter. They were only concerned about the disturbance. Her cry made them frustrated and they brought the matter to Jesus for the deliverance from her cry.

We also tempt to do the same thing. As disciples, we also tempt to pray for others just because of the repeated prayer requests, but not because of our concern or care for that particular person.

This Canaanite woman, even though not understanding the attitude of the disciples, thought that at last there is some one who would stands with her in her trouble to take up the matter with Jesus.

She allowed his disciples to take up the matter on behalf of her to Jesus. She thought that the disciples are very close to Jesus and Jesus would listen his disciples.

Sometimes we expect others to pray for us. We entrust our prayer request to some one who seems more spiritual than us. We think they are close to God and the God will listen them more than us. But we don’t know what will be the attitude of that spiritual person. Our God expect a personal relationship from us. He don’t like a mediator in between me and my God. He love to have a direct relationship with me and you.

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