“I begin God today in gratitude for all the ways you have shown love to me.
“But after hearing of Him (Jesus), a woman whose little daughter had an unclean spirit immediately came and fell at His feet. Now the woman was a Gentile, of the Syrophoenician race. And she kept asking Him to cast the demon out of her daughter. And He was saying to her, “Let the children be satisfied first, for it is not good to take the children’s bread and throw it to the dogs.” But she answered and *said to Him, “Yes, Lord, but even the dogs under the table feed on the children’s crumbs.” And He said to her, “Because of this answer go; the demon has gone out of your daughter.” And going back to her home, she found the child lying on the bed, the demon having left.” (Mark 7:25-28)
To the Jews living in Israel of Jesus’s time, dogs were an “unclean” animal and viewed similar to a pig. Dogs were viewed as scavengers that ate things Jews believed defiled them, dead things and garbage and were not looked at as pets to keep in your home as a companion. Gentiles were viewed by the Jews as “unclean” as well. Jews commonly referred to themselves as the “children” of God and Gentiles as “dogs.”
God plan of salvation is for all the world to be saved and blessed. His saving grace was for all people. Israel does have a special place in His plan, as it is through Israel that his salvation was to flow through and to the rest of the world. As Paul states “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes (the whole world through faith), to the Jew first (Israel) and also to the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “ But the righteous man shall live by faith.” (Romans 1:16-17). And the woman in the story agrees with this plan as she said the dogs get the scraps from the table.” Meaning Israel received first and through them all the world will receive blessing, “Scraps” But what we must remember is that what is called “scraps” is in reality abundance and more. In the feeding of the 5,000 Jews all were satisfied, all were filled and not scraps, but 12 baskets, a bounty was left over, In the feeding of the 4,000 gentiles, all were filled, all were satisfied, and there were “Scraps”, a bounty of 7 baskets left over. The “Scraps” of Jesus, which in reality is a bounty, cast out a demon from the woman’s daughter from a distance and brought healing and satisfaction to her household. And in Jesus all of us whether Jew of gentile can receive a bounty of his love, grace, and mercy and be satisfied.
You in the church have “tasted and seen that the Lord is Good” (Psalm 34:8). You have experienced the love, mercy and grace of God in Jesus Christ. You are part of and have experienced the acceptance, fellowship and bounty of the body of Christ. Now who are the “dogs” you need to share the “scraps” of the bounty you have received. You in the church who hang out with other “Clean” people in the churches hospitality center and other gatherings who look like you, dink specialty coffees, listen to Casting Crowns, use words like “Fellowship” and “discerning,” and get the first fruits of your friendships. Who are the “dogs” to you, that you personally avoid as “unclean” because of their lifestyle, the way they look, where they live, how they are viewed in your circle of friends as someone, “not good to throw the bread of life” to them. In the passage above Jesus left Israel and went to the land occupied by the gentiles, by the “dogs” and cast out demons, heeled the deaf and dumb, fed them and loved them. Who is God calling you to leave your “Clean” little circle and enter into what you perceive as the “unclean”? They could be across the world, across the city, across the street, across the classroom in sitting in a desk, or in the office cubicle next to you.
My family, I pray today that you will reflect on the bounty God in Jesus Christ has supplied and has for you and he desires to “satisfy” you with his love, grace and mercy. I pray you will also open your eyes to see beyond your circle of “Cleaness” to those you may see as unclean, and open your heart to share the “scraps” of the Gospel of the bounty of grace with them. In Jesus’ name.! Please pray the same for me. God bless you my friends!!
Please share your thoughts and reflections in the comment box below.
Gary Liederbach- Lead Follower
One Direction Community
Facebook: One Direction Community-ODC
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