Daily D – Mark 7:27-28
He said to her, “Let the children be fed first, because it isn’t right to take the children’s bread and throw it to the dogs.” But she replied to him, “Lord, even the dogs under the table eat the children’s crumbs.”
MARK 7:27-28 (CSB)
Our son’s dog, Trip, and our granddaughter, Kennedy, have a system worked out. She eats all she wants of her meal, then she feeds the rest to him. She has a child-size table and chairs where she dines. Trip is a big dog who could easily move in and lick up the morsels on her plate without an invitation. Instead, he patiently awaits his turn.
It’s a good system for them both. She cleans her plate. He helps. Bring on the dessert!
This text presents a woman with dogged determination. There are a couple of things to notice about her. Mark says she was a Gentile and a Syrophoenician by birth. These were to the Jewish people of the day what we might call a double no-no. Gentiles were considered as unclean as lepers. Contact with them defiled good and proper Jewish people. She was from a region that was long known as an oppressor of the Jews.
She did not care much about all of that. Her daughter was demonized and she wanted deliverance for her child. She had heard about the bread that fed five thousand. She had likely heard other stories of Jesus healing the sick and delivering people from demons. She wanted what only Jesus provided.
“Immediately after hearing about him, a woman whose little daughter had an unclean spirit came and fell at his feet,” (verse 25).
Why did Jesus respond the way he did? He said, “Let the children be fed first, because it isn’t right to take the children’s bread and throw it to the dogs.” If this were _When Harry Met Sally_, the woman might have retorted, “Is one of us supposed to be a dog here?”
Notice she did not argue the point. Instead, her response sounds like, “Yes, the bread belongs to the Jews from whom and for whom you come. They get first shot. But can I sit at the kid’s table and eat what they drop on the floor?” (See verse 28.)
Jesus “told her, ‘Because of this reply, you may go. The demon has left your daughter.’”
A Roman centurion, a Samaritan woman at a well, and now this Syrophoenician woman all came to Jesus for mercy. Each one of them received what they sought. Each one of them demonstrated greater faith than the vast majority of the Jews Jesus came to save.
No one who ever went to Jesus in humble faith ever left empty.
No one who goes to Jesus today in humble faith ever leaves empty.
Trip and Kennedy know that dogged determination and simple faith end with all bellies full. This woman and her daughter also knew that truth. Do you?
What do you need that only Jesus can provide? Go to him in humble faith and watch him do what only he can do.
I will go to God in humble faith.
Our Father, thank you for loving the unlovable. Thank you for inviting us to join you in this ministry of mercy and grace. Give us humble faith and dogged determination to seek you that we may find you and experience you in our times of need. Amen.
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Luke 8:24, 25 They came and woke him up, saying, “Master, Master, we’re going to die!” Then he got up and rebuked the wind and the raging waves. So they ceased, and there was a calm. He said to them, “Where is your faith?” (CSB)