MATTHEW 15.21-31 | When we think of Jesus healing, our minds go to the lame walking, the mute talking and the sick being made well. For good reason, this is what Jesus did. But, there is much more to healing then taking away infirmaries. Jesus is revealing in individual and physical ways what He will do to the whole earth: bring restoration. In this story we are treated to much more than physical healing; we see Jesus overcoming prejudice and social limitations. We see Jesus breaking down the perceived limits of God’s people, making it clear that the faith of the Canaanite woman will receive mercy. We see Jesus acting against the perception of the Messiah. What He reveals to us is that healing the world is much greater and more complex than we usually give it credit. To overturn ALL injustice and brokenness requires and act equally as gracious.
And great crowds came to him, bringing with them the lame, the blind, the crippled, the mute, and many others, and they put them at his feet, and he healed them, so that the crowd wondered, when they saw the mute speaking, the crippled healthy, the lame walking, and the blind seeing. And they glorified the God of Israel. Matthew 15. 30-31
1. What part of the text or sermon had the greatest impact on you? Where were you most encouraged, intrigued, challenged?
2. Why does Jesus ignore and insult the woman? Why does He change His attitude toward her?
3. What was the disciples attitude toward the woman? Are there people groups or subcultures that you have cast off as unredeemable?
4. Read 2 Corinthians 5.16-21. How does the gospel change our perspective of people? How are we to act as ambassadors of the message of reconciliation?
5. How does seeing the healings of Jesus as more than physical miracles give us a larger role in bringing healing to this world? What brokenness are you specifically positioned to address?