And, behold, a woman of Canaan came out of the same coasts, and cried unto him, saying, Have mercy on me, O Lord, thou Son of David; my daughter is grievously vexed with a devil. Matthew 15:22
Not to first understand this story, we need to understand the history and relationship between the Israelites and the Canaanites. Obviously the Canaanites are most famous for when God commanded Israel to wipe them out because of their wickedness. The Canaanites were a pagan centric society that believed in sacrificing their children to false gods among other things
So when a Canaanite woman came to approach the Jewish Messiah, you could probably expect this encounter would not go well. What would make this woman believe she could even approach the Messiah? Obviously because she really needed help and she really believed who Jesus is! She even addressed him as Lord (Master)
But he answered her not a word. And his disciples came and besought him, saying, Send her away; for she crieth after us. Matthew 15:23
The disciples had no mercy for her, they wanted Jesus to send her away. Rebuke this Canaanite Woman, who does she think she is! Doesn’t this sound like the Church today? Rebuke these sinners! Send them all to Hell!
But he answered and said, I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel. Matthew 15:24
Jesus challenges her faith, I AM the Messiah of Israel! This is what all of Israel believed in the beginning. They believed Jesus was the powerful Messiah that would wipe out all their enemies and make Israel reign from Earth! But they were mistaken!
Then came she and worshipped him, saying, Lord, help me. But he answered and said, It is not meet to take the children’s bread, and to cast it to dogs. Matthew 15:25-26
Notice her reaction, she came and worshipped Jesus! Look at the humility she demonstrated; this is true repentance! Jesus then responds and calls her a dog! What? But what does she call him? Lord (Master) She is throwing herself at the mercy of the Master!
But he answered and said, It is not meet to take the children’s bread, and to cast it to dogs. And she said, Truth, Lord: yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table. Matthew 15:26-27
Again Jesus calls her a dog, he basically says to her he came to save Israel not the Gentiles! She replies shes willing to be a dog if she could even be at the Lords Table! How desperate are you to be in the presence of your Lord? How desperate do you want to be at The Lords table?
Then Jesus answered and said unto her, O woman, great is thy faith: be it unto thee even as thou wilt. And her daughter was made whole from that very hour. Matthew 15:28
Jesus does the unthinkable, he heals the Canaanite womans daughter because of her great faith! I could only imagine the face of his disciples, as they wanted to throw her out for even approaching Jesus. He praises her for her amazing faith!
This sets the tone for Gods redemption story for humanity, not just for Israel but for everyone who calls upon the name of Jesus! Amen!
Then certain of the scribes and of the Pharisees answered, saying, Master, we would see a sign from thee. But he answered and said unto them, An evil and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given to it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas: Matthew 12:38-39
Throughout Jesus ministry , he prophesied about his death and resurrection. The Sign of Jonah was one of the many instances. Here the religious leaders are asking for a “sign” Prove to us you are God! Doesn’t this sound familiar in todays world? Atheist today believe their clever argument is if God is really then show me a sign! Yet they deny the simple and basics of evidence of the existence of our universe and life itself.
This is what Jesus told the religious leaders, God has already given signs. Then he referenced Jonah because these Pharisees are well educated on. Are you missing the already signs God has given you?
For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. Matthew 12:40
Jesus is foretelling about his death and resurrection using Jonah’s incident in a whale as a foreshadow of the tomb. Now this seems like a pretty easy analogy to understand, however in todays Christianity this statement by Jesus is highly debated.
When Jesus says “3 days and 3 nights’ is he referring to a literal 72 hours? No. This is a Hebrew Idiom, meaning its not literally 72 hours. Any part of a day would count as a day , this is why Jesus referenced 3 days and nights.
We know from scripture Jesus was crucified on a Friday because it was “Preparation Day” meaning the day before the Sabbath (Mark 15:42, Luke 23:54, John 19:31)
We know Jesus rose on the first day of the week (Sunday) which is why Christians now worship on Sunday and was historically called the Lords Day (Matthew 28, Mark 16, Luke 24, John 20)
The men of Nineveh shall rise in judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: because they repented at the preaching of Jonas; and, behold, a greater than Jonas is here. Matthew 12:41
What Jonah did was a foreshadow of Christ to come! Jonah preached repentance and Nineveh repented to God. Now Christ has come who is even greater than Jonah!
And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick. Matthew 14:14
When we think about the miracles that Jesus performed, often we think about this miracle when Jesus fed the 5,000. When we first learned this story, we might have skimmed over it and figured ok but not blown away. However when we look at this miracle from a deeper perspective, its amazing what Jesus is revealing to us
Notice it says Jesus was looking upon the “Great Multitude”, when do we see the Great Multitude in the Bible? We see it in Revelation “The Great Multitude standing before The Lamb” (Revelation 7:9) These are the redeemed by Christ! Notice it says Jesus had compassion on them and healed them! This is a foreshadow of the eternally redeemed people of God, the Born Again Christians!
And when it was evening, his disciples came to him, saying, This is a desert place, and the time is now past; send the multitude away, that they may go into the villages, and buy themselves victuals. But Jesus said unto them, They need not depart; give ye them to eat. Matthew 14:15-16
The disciples were telling The Lord, send these people away! Its too late for them! But Jesus said “They don’t need to depart, give them something to eat! Doesn’t the Church say this same thing today? “Send these sinners to Hell, its too late for them”! But Jesus says bring them to him and he will give them the Bread of Life and The Living Water!
And they say unto him, We have here but five loaves, and two fishes. He said, Bring them hither to me. Matthew 14:17-18
But “The Church” says we cant care for these people! We cant save these people! Your right only Jesus Christ can save them. Jesus said “Bring them to me”! Notice the Churchs role is not to save people but bring them to the Savior!
And he commanded the multitude to sit down on the grass, and took the five loaves, and the two fishes, and looking up to heaven, he blessed, and brake, and gave the loaves to his disciples, and the disciples to the multitude. Matthew 14:19
Notice Jesus commanded the Great Multitude to sit down! The sheep heard the voice of the Shepherd and they obeyed. And he took the bread, blessed it , broke it, and distributed among them! This should remind you of Communion, Jesus broke his body to pay for our sins and gave it to his people
This is a foreshadow of Christs death on the cross and redemption for us! This whole miracle was a foreshadow of our faith, that Christ died for us to bring us in Communion with him! Amen!
After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Matthew 6:9
One of the many great gifts and blessings God has given us is The Lords Prayer. Not only because it came from the mouth of our Lord Jesus Christ himself, but it also gives us focus and understanding with our relationship with God
The first line reveals to us that our Heavenly Father reigns from Heaven. The word Hallowed means Holy. Treat Gods name with holiness not vain! This is why blasphemy is such a serious offence to God
Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Matthew 6:10
We eagerly await the return of our Lord Jesus Christ and the establishment of Gods Kingdom here on Earth. Were not looking forward to floating around on clouds with harps, Heaven will becoming down to Earth and establish His Kingdom
Also while we are here , we should strive to do Gods will and not our own. This can often be a struggle to find Gods ultimate will for our lives versus our own will. Establishing a close relationship with Jesus is vital to understanding this
Give us this day our daily bread. Matthew 6:11
Often we try to plan our future way ahead, Jesus instructed us not to. Everyday we need to start our day with asking God to give us our “daily bread”. Give us the wisdom, understanding, strength, and provision to make it through another day. Rely on God for all your needs! Obviously, that doesn’t mean we just sit around and do nothing, but God is our leader and we follow his direction
And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. Matthew 6:12
Repentance is not a one time deal. Repentance should be a way of life. When we fail and fall short , come to Jesus and ask for forgiveness. We also need to forgive those who have sinned against us. We cant expect God to forgive us if we are not willing to forgive others. Start your day with a clean slate!
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen. Matthew 6:13
Satan (the evil one) is going to try and tempt you into sin. Daily we should ask God to help us resist that temptation whatever it may be. Obviously God has given you free will to choose, but those choices have fatal consequences.
The Lords Prayer is more than just a repeated mantra, it’s a proclamation, it’s a declaration, it’s a way of life Amen!