In Tyre and Sidon

To get some peace and quiet away from the crowds, Jesus and his disciples went out of Palestine to the Gentile towns of Tyre and Sidon on the Phoenician coast (Matt 15:21; Mark 7:24). When a woman of that area asked Jesus to drive a demon out of her daughter, he tested the genuineness of her faith before helping her. At first he did not answer; but the woman persisted (Matt 15:22-23).

Jesus then told the woman that his work was with Israel, not with the surrounding nations. But her pleas for help continued (Matt 15:24-25). Jesus added that the people of Israel were the favoured ‘children’ to benefit from his ministry, and it was not right to neglect them to feed the Gentile ‘dogs’. Still not giving up, the woman replied that although she was an unworthy Gentile ‘dog’, not fit to eat with the ‘children’ at Israel’s table, she would be satisfied to eat the crumbs that fell to the floor. Jesus was impressed with the genuineness of the woman’s faith and granted her request immediately (Matt 15:26- 28).

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