I can’t imagine what it must have been like for Jesus and His disciples, always being surrounded by crowds wanting something from the Lord. It must have been exhausting! Being the mom of four boys, I know how taxing it was for me when they were younger and all wanted my attention at one time. Jesus had hundreds and even thousands making demands of Him at any given moment.
In Mark 7:24 we see that, “He entered a house and wanted no one to know it, but He could not be hidden.” (NKJV) He’s tired and wants some rest a break from work,but He had a ministry to perform.
A woman, a Gentile, comes to Him, begging Jesus to remove the demon from her daughter. I Matthew’s account, Jesus responds to her, “I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”(Matthew 15:24 NKJV) He’s been sent to bring Israel back to repentance.
But the woman persists in begging Him to remove this demonic oppression from her daughter. Once again Jesus responds, “Let the children be filled first, for it is not good to take the children’s bread and throw it to the little dogs.”(vs 27 NKJV) We may think this is cruel, Jesus seemingly comparing this woman and her daughter to dogs. But He is making an analogy. He was sent to do a job: minister to Israel, prepare their hearts, die, commission His followers to spread the Gospel throughout the world.
This woman and her concerns were outside of that plan. But her answer to Jesus touched His heart of compassion; “Yes, Lord, yet even the little dogs under the table eat from the children’s crumbs.”(vs 28 NKJV) That is faith! Jesus had encountered faith like this in another Gentile: in Luke 7 we read of Jesus healing a centurion’s servant and Jesus says, “I say to you, I have not found such great faith, not even in Israel.”(Luke 7:9 NKJV)
Jesus responds to this woman’s faith by saying, “For this saying go your way; the demon has gone out of your daughter.”(vs 29 NKJV) He responded to her faith.
Even now, Jesus responds to our cries of faith. “Lord, I’m unworthy, but I believe You died for me!” “Lord, I believe!” “Lord, forgive me!” He hears every heartcry. He loves us and will meet our needs. Cry out to Him now, to meet you where you are and heal your hurting, searching, longing heart.