It was an unusual day in Tyre and Sidon. These seaside Gentile towns awoke to find that Jesus, the famous Jew from Galilee, was visiting. As He walked the streets, we can imagine their voices. “He doesn’t look like a celebrity,” says one. “But, He heals the sick!” exclaims another. One woman in the crowd can’t wait any longer. She musters up her courage and shouts, “Son of David!” She calls again and again, but can’t draw the eye of this miracle worker. She knows in her heart that He is her only hope. His followers are getting annoyed. If only they knew about her little girl. She’s plagued with a demon. He must understand, but why won’t He help? Her heart seizes and she cries, “Lord, have mercy.” His gaze locks onto hers with a crushing response. He came first to save the Israelites, not her.
It’s likely that you’ve heard the Gospel often. Perhaps your family members are in fellowship in a local assembly, call Him Lord Jesus Christ, and profess to be saved. No doubt, dear reader, you respectfully call Him Lord Jesus Christ, too. Yet, like this Canaanite lady, do all of your cries to God seem to be ignored? Do you feel God is being unfair? You pray, “Lord Jesus, save me, please!” But, nothing happens. There is no miracle, no moment, and no salvation for you.
Jesus’ response likely stung and surprised her, too. But, she forgot herself and worshiped Him. “I don’t deserve anything from this man,” she thinks. “I am an enemy of God. What I think He wants to hear doesn’t matter. My words, my demeanor, who I am is all wrong! Oh, Lord, you’re right. I’m just a little dog begging for crumbs from the table. Please show me mercy and heal my little girl.” And at this, the Savior stopped.
This lady learned something that escapes many who hear the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. “There is none righteous, no not one.” (Rom 3:10) Our sins have offended God, and we must repent and acknowledge who we really are before Him. Mercy does not boast and Christ Jesus came to save lowly sinners, not those who hold up their faith, works, or righteousness in exchange for salvation! This is a difficult truth to accept.
But, what the woman of Matthew 15 learned resides in the heart of every saved person. The moment she acknowledged her rightful place, unworthy and in need of grace alone, His grace overflowed. “Be it unto thee, even as thou wilt,” He says. The miracle of the cross, where Jesus died for sinners, is our point of grace today. “I am a guilty sinner, but Jesus died for me” is true repentance. God is right, I am wrong. I’m the sinner, He’s the Savior. Are you a sinner? Have you told God and asked for His mercy? Even the great Apostle Paul was humbled to say, “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief.” (1Tim 1:15) What a comfort to know that the quality of God’s mercy is not strained, though 2000 years have passed. Like this dear, humbled lady or the great Apostle, are you ready to be saved today?