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May 30th
Home Sections The Daily B.R.E.A.D. February 12, 2009 - Thursday Gospel Mark 8:1-10
February 12, 2009 - Thursday Gospel Mark 8:1-10 PDF Print E-mail
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Sections - The Daily B.R.E.A.D.
Wednesday, 11 February 2009 00:27
She began with a request and she ended on her knees in worshipful prayer to the living God. No one who ever sought Jesus with faith - whether Jew or Gentile - was refused his help. Do you seek Jesus with expectant faith?

Genesis 2:18-25
Psalm 128:1-2, 3, 4-5
Mark 7:24
- And from there he arose and went away to the region of Tyre and Sidon. And he entered a house, and would not have any one know it; yet he could not be hid. 25 But immediately a woman, whose little daughter was possessed by an unclean spirit, heard of him, and came and fell down at his feet. 26 Now the woman was a Greek, a Syrophoeni'cian by birth. And she begged him to cast the demon out of her daughter. 27 And he said to her, "Let the children first be fed, for it is not right to take the children's bread and throw it to the dogs." 28 But she answered him, "Yes, Lord; yet even the dogs under the table eat the children's crumbs." 29 And he said to her, "For this saying you may go your way; the demon has left your daughter." 30 And she went home, and found the child lying in bed, and the demon gone.

Meditation by Don Schwagger:
Do you ever feel "put-off" by the Lord? This passage describes the only occasion in which Jesus ministered outside of Jewish territory. (Tyre and Sidon were fifty miles north of Israel and still exist today in modern Lebanon.) A Gentile woman - an outsider who was not a member of the chosen people - puts Jesus on the spot by pleading with him to show mercy to her daughter who was tormented with an evil spirit. At first Jesus seemed to pay no attention to her, and this made his disciples feel embarrassed. Jesus very likely did this not to put the woman off, but rather to test her sincerity and to awaken faith in her.
What did Jesus mean by the expression "throwing bread to the dogs"? The Jews often spoke of the Gentiles with arrogance and insolence as "unclean dogs" since the Gentiles were excluded from God's covenant and favor with Israel. For the Greeks the "dog" was a symbol of dishonor and was used to describe a shameless and audacious woman. Matthew's gospel records the expression do not give dogs what is holy (Matthew 7:6). Jesus, no doubt, spoke with a smile rather than with an insult because this woman immediately responds with wit and faith - "even the dogs eat the crumbs". Jesus praises a Gentile woman for her persistent faith and for her affectionate love. She made the misery of her child her own and she was willing to suffer rebuff in order to obtain healing for her loved one. She also had indomitable persistence. Her faith grew in contact with the person of Jesus. She began with a request and she ended on her knees in worshipful prayer to the living God. No one who ever sought Jesus with faith - whether Jew or Gentile - was refused his help. Do you seek Jesus with expectant faith?
"Lord Jesus, your love and mercy knows no bounds. May I trust you always and never doubt your loving care and mercy. Increase my faith in your saving help and deliver me for all evil and harm.
Supplementary Reading
Be Encouraged

"Encourage one another; be of one mind, live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you." - 2 Corinthians 13:11

It's the rare person who hasn't failed in what he or she wanted to do at some point. We all make mistakes. And some of those mistakes have serious consequences for us and for others. But if we learn from our mistakes and turn our lives around, we can turn a negative into a positive. God can provide a positive mentor to come alongside us with encouragement and guidance. It's up to us to accept the help. God wants us to serve him successfully. The good news is: He's already put in place the people we need to help us get there.

So learn from your mistakes, but don't let them stop you. Use what happened in your past to positively determine what will happen in your future. Where you came from isn't nearly as important as where God is taking you.

* * *
Who has God used in your life to encourage you when you felt like you had failed? How did that person's encouragement propel you toward a more positive future? Is there anyone God wants you to encourage today?
* * *
Devotions taken from the
"Power for Life Daily Devotional."

Many who plan to seek God at the 11th hour, die at 10:30    -Unknown

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 11 February 2009 15:12

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