During His ministry here on earth, Jesus healed many people. Some He healed by touch; others He healed by words. Some were not even physically present when they were healed. The daughter of the Syro-Phoenician woman in Matthew 15:21-28 and Mark 7:24-30 is one such person. One of the things that all of the in-need-of-healing folks had in common was faith. They or someone for them went to Jesus expecting and believing they would be cured of whatever was ailing them. Here are two things we can learn from the faith of the Syro-Phoenician woman:
1. The Syro-Phoenician woman showed her faith. Verse 22 of Matthew 15 reads, “And behold, a woman of Canaan came from that region and cried out to Him, saying, ‘Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David! My daughter is severely demon-possessed.'”
In verse 25 we read, “Then she came and worshiped Him, saying, ‘Lord, help me!'”
What makes this story of faith unique is that a Gentile believed in the power of the Jewish Messiah. Even though Jesus’ disciples urged Him to send the Syro-Phoenician woman away, she persisted in calling until He answered. She boldly told Jesus what her problem was. She boldly requested His healing. In response, Jesus said, “O woman, great is your faith! Let it be to you as you desire!” The Syro-Phoenician woman’s daughter was healed from that very hour.
The woman showed her faith by going to Jesus. She showed her faith by repeatedly calling until He answered. She showed her faith by not being intimidated in her response.
It is not enough for us to say we have faith; we must show our faith. For example, if we want a new car, we cannot just say so. We must believe God will give us a new car. We must pray and ask Him for a new car. And then we must do our part in working to buy a new car. Check out what James has to say about “saying” faith and “showing” faith:
What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can faith save him? If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, and one of you says to them, “Depart in peace, be warmed and filled,” but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit? Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.
But someone will say, “You have faith, and I have works.” Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works…For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.
2. The Syro-Phoenician woman’s daughter benefited from her mother’s faith. The Syro-Phoenician woman was not the one in need of healing. Her daughter was and because of her mother’s faith she was made well in an instant.
Sometimes in life it is necessary to have faith not only for ourselves, but also for others. If someone you know is in need of hope, healing, or a blessing, have faith that God will bring what they need about in their lives. Have faith in others and have faith in God for others. Having and showing a strong faith in God can inspire others to express faith in Him as well.
Image credit: fashionplaceface