FROM THE PASTOR’S HEART
‘A Desperate Housewife’
In Mark 7:1-23, the Jewish leaders travelled all the way from Jerusalem to the region of Galilee to confront Jesus. The passage reports that they failed miserably in their attempt to trap our Lord. In Mark 7:24-30 Jesus takes His disciples to a place in Tyre, a Gentile city, for a retreat (clue in v24- ‘Jesus did not want anyone to know it.’). Yet, somehow, a Greek woman born in Syrian Phoenicia turns up. She was in dire straits and at her wits end; her little daughter was demon possessed and so far no one can help her.
At first, it appears that Jesus was unwilling to help the woman. He made it clear to her that His priority was to reach out to the Jews, not outsiders. But rather than react to Jesus’ remarks, the woman responds with a reply that so impressed the Master that He agrees to heal her daughter. What is going on here?
Well, even though this woman is an outsider, she knows Jesus (even more than the religious leaders did!). She calls Jesus, “Lord, or Son of David” (see Matthew 15:22- she’s a Canaanite woman!). In other words, she acknowledged Jesus as the ‘Christ’, the Messiah. When she approached Jesus, she knew that only Jesus can provide the hope that no one else can give. So when she was confronted with a ‘difficult’ response from Jesus (v27), she knows that Jesus has so much more to give that there is room for even outsiders to be blessed. It is no wonder that she is not ashamed to ask Jesus for help, even if it means belittling oneself (v28).
This passage reminds us that we can be like this woman. Like her, we have the opportunity to know Jesus. Question is: Do you know Jesus? Who is He to you? How do your thoughts, speech and actions in private and in public reflect His character? How desperate are you for Him? Shalom.
Ps Simon Say