DAILY DISCIPLINE #146
By Colleen Donahue
It could be argued that if prayer isn't passionate it's not really prayer. When you go to God are you passionate enough to "not take no for an answer"? We have in our study today the story of a Canaanite woman that was having her faith tested by Jesus himself. Her passionate prayer and persistence earned the highest accolade the Lord could have given.
Faith Tested and Passionate Prayer
Studies continued from Matthew 15:21-28
Day 1- In this story we see a foreshadowing of the gospel going out to all the world. Jesus had gone north, outside of Jewish territory, to find some privacy from the scribes and pharisees and to prepare him and his disciples for his end which was coming soon. It is the only time Jesus was out of Jewish territory when a woman -- a gentile of the old Canaanites and long time enemy of the Jews -- came to Him. No doubt Christ's fame had spread across the border. What did she want?
Matthew 15:21-22 / Mark 7: 24-26
Day 2 - And what did Jesus do?
Matthew 15: 23a
Jesus knowing all the hearts involved did nothing and said nothing! How could He be so rude and insensitive?
Day 3- Jesus in doing nothing brought out something in His disciples.
Day 4- Did they care for this woman? NO! She was a nuisance and the sooner they could get rid of her the better. Did Christ care about this woman? YES! He cares so much that He makes a statement -- not answering the disciples -- but a statement that would draw the woman to Him in a more personal way.
And it worked. Notice how she comes now.
Matthew 15: 25
Day 5- Is this nearness to be rewarded with insult? Is Jesus really calling her a "dog" in the next verse?
Matthew 15:26 / Mark 7:27
I think not. Picture this woman now kneeling close to Jesus and looking up into his face. With perhaps a wink and a smile and a kindly tone picture Jesus saying these words and you have a whole different picture. It's like us saying to a friend, "you rascal!"
Day 6- This kindly rebuff by Jesus is matched by her quick Greek wit.
Matthew 15: 27 / Mark 7: 28
Day 7- We see in this woman a faith which grew in the presence of Jesus. As you reread these verses notice three things.
A. She starts by calling Jesus, "Son of David". This was a popular, political title. But what does she finally call him?
Matthew 15: 25, 27a
B. She begins her encounter with Jesus by blurting out a request. (Matthew 15:22) But how does she progress?
Matthew 15: 25
C. At first she is just following Jesus. But notice that she ends up on her knees (vs.25)
Matthew 15: 21-28
Day 8-Finally we see in this woman that the prayer of faith has persistence. She saw Jesus as the only hope for her daughter. She had a passionate desire in her soul that wouldn't leave without an answer.
Day 9- God loves this kind of passionate prayer and even seeks to draw it out of us through delay.
Luke 11:5-10 / Luke 18: 7-8 / John 11:6,21
Day 10- Can you in faith go to God and pray as Jacob did or as this Canaanite woman?
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