Gospel of Mark Chapter Seven: Part Two

Introduction: A key idea in the Gospel of Mark is that Jesus is the servant of God. Today, we hope to discuss Jesus' prerogative over a Syrophoenician woman and a deaf mute.

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Body:
Read Mark 7:24-30
11. Over a Syrophoenician woman.
Jesus was confronted by a gentile woman in the Gospel of Mark Chapter Seven. The woman wanted her child healed. She endured Jesus’ apparent down talking, and her daughter was healed.

Applications –
- Witnessing.
In Chapter seven of the Gospel of Mark, notice in vs. 25 the importance of “word of mouth.” With all of our modern technology, there is still great power in people telling people what they know about the goodness of the Lord.

There are too many who expect someone else to work on bringing people to church. And there are too many who really don’t care about the empty chairs in the church.

Let’s work on being those who invite and try to bring loved ones with us to church and Christ. God can do great things for those who come, hear the word, and believe Him enough to obey Him.

- Enduring and humble faith. Notice in vss. 26-29 that the woman endured apparent down talking from Jesus with humility and faith. The result was that her daughter was healed.

No matter how we exam it, it is a strange occasion to hear Jesus refer to a woman as any kind of a dog or pet puppy. And there will be times in our lives, when strange, if not insulting, things are said to us.

And sometimes they may be said by the least likely people – parents, Pastor, or friends. In spite of the strange talk, the woman endured with humility and faith. Too many of us give up too quickly. Too many are not humble enough.

Let’s work on enduring and humble faith to help us in times like these. As the woman had a sick daughter in the Gospel of Mark, many of us have people in our circle of loved ones who have medical, financial, or some other type of issues.

And even if God doesn’t heal, as He did in the text, we must have the faith to trust that His way and timing is best for us. This kind of faith is nurtured by prayerfully studying and obeying God’s word with the support of believers.

Read Mark 7:31-37
12. Over a deaf mute.
Jesus heals a deaf mute in this seventh chapter of the Gospel of Mark. He uses touch, spit, and “strange words" (ef’-e-tha). The people are amazed and told everybody about what happened.

Applications –
- Ministry partnerships.
Notice in vs. 32 that some people brought a deaf mute to Jesus. We see in the Gospel of Mark that getting some people to Jesus requires more work than we can give individually.

However, the church ought to be a place where we can find those who will partner with us in trying to get loved ones hooked up with Jesus. In order for this partnering to take place, there is a need for people to be humble and compassionate enough to ask.

There is a need for people to be available enough and concerned enough to help. As a church family, we must make sure that people getting hooked up with Jesus trumps our love of tradition and lesser agendas.

Let’s work on developing ministry partnerships. It is hoped that our people group ministries – men, women, crucial link, and singles – would be places to nurture these kinds of partnerships and encounters with the power of God.

- Trust God’s way of doing things. Notice in vss. 29-30, 33-34 of this seventh chapter of the Gospel of Mark that God works in a variety of ways. For the woman, there is long distance healing.

For this man, there is touching, spitting, and strange words. God is not restricted to doing for us in the same way that He has done for others.

He may bless one person with a job, another with a profitable business, and yet another with an inheritance. Let’s be open to whatever way God wants to do His blessed will in our lives.

Woe unto us, if we miss our blessing because we, in effect, tell God that He has never done it this way before. God is so much bigger than we can get our minds around.

- Obedience is better than sacrifice. Notice in vs. 36 that the people followed after their zeal more than divine instructions. On one hand, I can understand how when God does great things, we want to tell someone.

But on the other hand, passages like I Samuel 15:22 teaches that obedience is better than sacrifice. Proverbs 14:12 teaches that what seems right to us may end in death.

Even in worship, we must work on harnessing our emotions and keeping God’s will over our own. For example, for years, if not decades, we had devotional prayers that were almost altar prayers.

However, because God has sent the Pastor to lead, even the worship service, and the Pastor has instructed the devotion leaders to pray brief opening prayers, instead of long intercessory prayers, they should obey.

Because God sent the Pastor and the Pastor has instructed us to grow to be standing tithers, we should strive to obey. Let’s work on being those who hear and obey God more than simply following after our emotions and own ways.

Conclusion: Let’s work on being servants of God. God has much for those who obey His will.

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