Matthew: Jesus Doing The Miraculous

Memory Verse: Matthew 15:31

15:29-31 The Multitude Wondered At Jesus’ Healing Power
Mark 7:31-32, 37

  • 15:29 Jesus was into the coasts of Tyre and Sidon (north of Galilee) when He departed from there and came nigh unto the sea of Galilee, in the region of Decapolis. This was still the region of the Gentiles (those who were not Jews, did not follow the Old Testament, nor did they worship Jehovah). He went up into a mountain and sat down there.
    Matthew 15:21
  • 15:30 The news that Jesus was a Healer started to spread. Maybe the news about the gentile mother who had her request granted by Jesus thus causing her daughter to made be made whole instantly was spread. Whatever the reason was, great multitudes came unto Jesus and they brought those who had physical problems and cast them down at Jesus’ feet. This included the lame (unable to walk), blind (unable to see), dumb (unable to speak), maimed (part of the body is crippled) and many others—is wasn’t limited to just certain kinds of disabilities or problems but it included all different kinds of people who had physical problems and suffering. What did Jesus do? He healed them. Application: You have a greater problem than any physical problem, it is called sin. Are you willing to come to Jesus for healing? All His physical healing points to the spiritual healing that He offers through faith in Himself.
  • 15:31 Jesus’ healing was complete and undeniable. Instantly the dumb were able to speak, the maimed were whole and no longer crippled, the lame were able to walk and the blind were able to see. Note: This wasn’t like many modern day false healers who pray “in Jesus name” but there is no real healing that is complete and undeniable. Jesus healed the hardest problems that could be verified—not just headaches or backaches. This caused two reactions from the multitude of gentiles:
  • Wonder—the multitude was amazed that Jesus could really heal them. It caused them all to marvel when they started to see all those of physical problems be heal of their problem and start doing something they couldn’t do before.
  • Glory—the multitude glorified the God of Israel. They positively acknowledge God for what He did through Jesus. They were thankful and responded in praise. The term “God of Israel” refers to their understanding of God’s relationship with the Jewish people. We don’t know how much they understood about God, but in the Old Testament healing and miracles (such as causing the blind to see) are done by God, thus Matthew recorded this story of healing to also witness to the Jews and each new generation that Jesus was sent by God.
    Exodus 4:11; Psalm 146:8
  • Conclusion: Jesus’ miracles prove that He was sent from God and He was here on a mission. Jesus wants to be the Healer of your life. You have a great problem called sin. Only Jesus has the power to heal you of your sickness. Humbly cast your self at His feet to seek for forgiveness and you will find it. Hear the testimony of those who have had their sins pardoned and you will be amazed at what Jesus has done. Only through Jesus can you be reconciled to God and truly glorify Him.

15:32-39 The Multitude Are Satisfied With Jesus’ Providing Power
Mark 8:1-10

  • 15:32 After healing all those who came to Him seeking healing,  Jesus called His disciples unto Him and told them that He has “compassion on the multitude”— He was moved in His inner being and willing to show kindness, favor, grace and mercy to these people. He was moved with compassion because they continued with Him three days up to that point, but they didn’t have nothing to eat. Jesus wasn’t willing to send them away fasting because they might faint on the way. Note: Jesus cared about the physical concerns of those He was around and didn’t focus on just the spiritual—although He never focused on the physical and neglected the spiritual. Application: Jesus knows your situation and He is willing to have compassion on you if you would come to Him.
  • 15:33 Jesus’ disciples looked at the situation without “eyes of faith.” They asked Jesus where they could get enough bread in the wilderness to feed such a great multitude of people. The disciples understood the situation: they couldn’t send everyone away because they didn’t have enough strength for the journey as Jesus said but also they are in a desolate place where they can’t get any food to give to the people. To the disciples the situation must seem hopeless. Thankfully, Jesus specializes in hopeless situations. He would again use this as a time to teach His disciples to have confidence in Him. Application: Jesus knowns your needs and wants you to rely on Him.
  • 15:34-37a Jesus asked His disciples, “How many loaves have ye?” They responded telling Jesus that they only have seven loaves of bread and a few little fishes. Then Jesus commanded the multitude to sit down on the ground—(last time He commanded them to sit in the grass, thus we see this was a different season and a different event than the other miraculous feeding). Then Jesus took the seven loaves of bread and the few little fishes and performed a miracle. First, He gave thanks and then He brake them, and gave  them to His disciples, and the disciples gave them to the multitude. The miracle was that the supply of bread and fish never ended (they kept giving) until the multitude all ate and were filled. Application: Jesus shows us grace. His miracle points to who He really is.
  • 15:37b-38 Not including women in children, there were at least 4,000 men. That means there could have been between 4,000-14,000 people there. Every person there ate and was filled. They didn’t get food from anywhere else because the place they were was uninhabited. Finally, after they finished eating they took up seven baskets full of the broken meat that was left. Application: Jesus provides us with more than need—His generosity points to the abundant life for all those who trust in Him. Application: Jesus provides us with more than need—His generosity points to the abundant life for all those who trust in Him.
  • 15:39 Finally, now that the multitude had energy for the journey, Jesus dismissed them and sent them away. Then He got onto the ship and went into the coasts of Magdala (or the region of Magadan).

Review Questions

  • What kind of people were brought to Jesus?
  • What did Jesus do when these people came to Him?
  • Why did Jesus have compassion on them?
  • Why could have the situation seemed hopeless to the disciples?
  • How did Jesus deal with the situation?

What Is The Biblical Framework For Missions?

The Biblical framework for missions is that from the beginning God promised to save “whosoever will” through sending Jesus as the Saviour of the World and in the end He will accomplish His mission by saving people from every kindred, tongue, people and nation. The Bible is the outworking of God on mission to save sinful mankind for His glory.

The Framework “From Beginning To End” For Missions

  • From the beginning: In the first eleven chapters of Genesis, the first book in the Bible, we find our basis for humanity. At this time, God dealt directly with all of mankind and there was no distinction between the Jews and the Gentiles. It is within these chapters that we find the foundation for the story of all mankind: God creates mankind (Genesis 1:27); Mankind sins against God (Genesis 3:6); God promises to save mankind (Genesis 3:15; 9:26-27). Thus from the beginning, God was on mission to save “whosoever will” from their sin and its penalty of death or eternal separation from Him. This mission was initiated by God and will be accomplished by God. He is promising to defeat Satan and his followers (unbelievers) through the offspring of the woman (Jesus). One day the “Promised Man” would come to defeat Satan and even though Satan will strike His heel (suffering), the promised Man will crush Satan’s head (eternal damnation).
    Genesis 1-11; 1 Corinthians 15:22; Romans 5:12-21; 16:20; Revelation 12:9; 20:2, 10; Hebrews 2:14; 1 John 3:8; John 8:44
  • To the End: In the last two chapters of Revelation (21-22) we find the fulfillment of God’s promise to save “whosoever will”. God says, “It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end” (Revelation 21:6). The saved will be God’s people, God Himself will be with them and be their God. This includes people out of every kindred (tribe), tongue (language), people, and nation (people groups). But those who reject God’s salvation will be cast into the lake of fire (eternal damnation).
    Revelation 21-22; 5:9; 7:9; 14:6
  • In-between: If the above is the framework “from the beginning to end” for missions, then the in-between is the outworking of God on mission to redeemed “whosoever will” to Himself by Himself.
    Genesis 12 through Revelation 20

The Old Testament Emphasis On Missions

  • In Genesis 12:1-3 God makes a unilateral, unconditional, literal, and eternal covenant with Abraham. The main missional aspect of this covenant was that God was going to bless all the families of the earth through him. The scriptures preached the gospel unto Abraham. The “Promised Man” of Genesis 3:15 would be of the seed of Abraham. This “singular seed” is Jesus. God was willing to justify “whosoever will” through faith. Just like Abraham, those in this time were to have faith in God’s promise, unto the fulfillment of the promise came in Jesus, and it could be accounted to them for righteousness. The second missional aspect of this covenant was that God was going to: (1) make a great nation from him, (2) bless him and (3) make his name great so that he would “be a blessing”. They would receive inward blessing for an outward cause: God would use them to be a light for the nations, so that His salvation may reach to the end of the earth.
    Genesis 12:1-3; 15:18-21; 17:1-21; 26:2-5; 28:10-17; Isaiah 9:6, 7; 19:24; 42:6; 49:6; Galatians 3:6, 8-9 16
  • God keeps His promise with Abraham and blesses him. A nation is born and the people of God (Hebrews, Israelites, Jews) were called out for a specific purpose: to be a peculiar treasure unto God above all people and a kingdom of priests through which all the people of the earth may know that the Lord is God, and that there is none else. They were to be “inward focused”—meaning they were to minister God’s will to their own people and the strangers among them, but they were also to be “outward focused”—meaning they were to deliberately minister God’s will to all other nations.
    Exodus 9:14, 16; 19:5-6; 1 Kings 8:41-43; 8:60
  • God makes a covenant with King David that was connected to the promise (Genesis 3:15; 12:1-3). David recognized part of this promise as the “the manner (teaching) of man (humankind)”. “This” was the “seed” or the “promised Man” (2 Samuel 7:12, 16) and the throne that will be established forever. The promise will be fulfilled through the Jews, and specifically the linage of David, but it would benefit all mankind.
    2 Samuel 7:1-29; 1 Chronicles 17:1-27; Psalm 89:1-52; Isaiah 9:6, 7; Luke 1:32, 33
  • The Psalms reflect God’s will to use the Jews to reach out to all nations with the truth. The peoples of the nations are called to worship God because He is the great King over all the earth. The Jews were to sing, praise, speak, not be ashamed, to make known His deeds and declare the Lord’s glory / wonder / doings among the nations.
    Psalms 2:1-12; 9:1-20; 18:49; 22:27-31; 33:1-22; 47:1-9; 57:9; 66:1-20; 67:1-7; 72:1-28; 86:9-10; 96:1-13; 98:1-9; 100:1-5; 105:1; 108:3-5; 117:1-2; 119:46; 126:2-3; 145:1-21
  • Other examples in the Old Testament that give structure to the intent of God to reach all peoples are: (1) the stories of gentiles who had a relationship with God, such as Melchizedek, Jethro, Balaam, Rahab, Ruth and Naaman; (2) the examples of the prophets, such as Isaiah, Jonah, Joel, Amos, Micah, Jeremiah and Zechariah.
    Genesis 14:18; Exodus 18:10-11; Numbers 22:9; Joshua 2:9-11; Ruth 2:12; 2 Kings 5:15-19; Isaiah 19:24; 42:6; 49:6; Jonah 1:1-2; 3:10; 4:2, 6-11; Joel 2:28-32; Amos 9:11-12; Micah 4:1-5; Jeremiah 3:17; 33:9; Zechariah 2:11-13; 8:20-23; 14:16-19

The New Testament Emphasis On Missions

  • Jesus, the Promised Man: Jesus came into the world to be the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world. Whosoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. Jesus is indeed the Christ, the Saviour of the world. He is the light of the world. He came to fulfill the promise. He was the “Promised Man”. Through a virgin birth God became man in Jesus. He lived a sinless life. Mankind rejected and crucified Him. He was buried, but three days later He rose from the dead. He defeated sin, death and evil. He is the way, the truth, and the life and “whosoever will” can come unto the Father by faith in Jesus alone. All the Gospels are evidence of these truths (Matthew-John).
    John 1:29; 3:16-17; 4:42; 6:33; 8:12; 9:5; 12:32, 46; 14:6
  • The Church: The local church started with Jesus and His disciples, and it was established when they received and were filled by the Holy Spirit. The mandate of the church was to make disciples of all nations through going and preaching the gospel, baptizing new believers and teaching them all that Jesus taught. As a result, new local churches would be established all around the world. The rest of the New Testament (Acts-Jude) records the living out of this mandate with Revelation explaining how it will all end victoriously.
    Acts 1:7-8; Matthew 28:18-20; Mark 16:15-20; Luke 24:45-53; John 20:20-23; Romans 1:1-2; 10:14-15; 1 Peter 2:9

Review Questions

  • What is the framework “from the beginning” for missions?
  • What is the framework “to the end” for missions?
  • What is the storyline throughout the entire Bible?
  • What is the Old Testament emphasis of missions?
  • What is the New Testament emphasis of Missions?

Matthew: Great Faith In Jesus

Memory Verse: Matthew 15:26-28

15:21-22 A Humble Faith In The Helper Seeking Healing

  • 15:21 After Jesus finished teaching His disciples an important truth about what truly makes a person unclean (what comes out of the heart, not what a person consumes), He went away from there and departed into the coasts of Tyre and Sidon (north of Galilee). This was the region of the Gentiles (those who were not Jews, did not follow the Old Testament, nor did they worship Jehovah). Most of Jesus’ ministry has taken place in areas that are predominately Jewish, but Jesus leaves these areas and entered into a house hoping that, “No man know it,” possibly as a chance to get away from the crowds and accusations of the religious leaders of the Jews for a time of rest and disciple training, “but Jesus could not be hid”.
    Mark 7:24
  • 15:22 Then a certain women of Canaan (the woman was a Greek, a Syrophenician by nation) from that region heard of Jesus. She came, fell at His feet and cried (loudly shouting out) unto Him, saying, “Have mercy on me, O Lord, thou Son of David; my daughter is grievously vexed with a devil (unclean spirit).” We learn several things about this woman’s faith from what she said:
    Mark 7:25
  • Her faith comes from her humility: “Have mercy on me”—she was wanting Jesus to show leniency and compassion towards her. But this also means she was aware of her own unworthiness for the request she was about to ask. She was a Gentile and rejected by the Jews. But she is willing to humbly come seek out Jesus (a Jew), and to completely disregard herself so that she could find mercy. Is your pride keeping you back from seeking out mercy? Do you lack faith because you lack humility?
  • Her faith is in the Helper: “O Lord, thou Son of David”— she refers to Jesus as a descendent of David and uses a term that refers to the Messiah. The use of this term and referring to Jesus as Lord could mean that she came to an understanding of who Jesus was and was expressing faith in Him as the Lord and the Christ. However we understand these terms, she means them as terms of respect and understood that Jesus was someone great who could help her in a miraculous way. Faith is only useful if it is based in the right person. Who do you think Jesus is?
  • Her faith seeks healing: “My daughter”—she asked Jesus to cast the devil out of her daughter. She had learned enough and had faith enough to believe that Jesus could cast out the devil in her daughter who was badly under its power, control and influence. We don’t know how this demon possession manifested itself in the life of the daughter, but it was severe. The mother is at the end of herself and needs Jesus to work a miracle. Have you come to the end of yourself and realized your need of Jesus in your life? Are you seeking truly spiritual healing?

15:23-24 Understanding Jesus’ Faithfulness To His Mission

  • 15:23-24 Surprisingly, Jesus didn’t say anything in response to her. He was silent. But His disciples seemed annoyed. They came to Him and asked Him to send her away because she “crieth after us”—meaning she was continually and loudly shouting out to them for mercy. It seemed as if the disciples wanted Jesus to just grant her request so that she would stop shouting. Jesus answers His disciples by saying that He is not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel. Again, we learn a few things from this response:
  • “Sent”—Jesus was on a specific mission while He was here on earth. He wasn’t sent on world-wide healing ministry nor would He setup His own government and kingdom on the earth. But He was conscience of His specific mission from God to be the Saviour of the world through His death and resurrection.
  • “House of Israel”—His earthly mission was specifically to the chosen people of God “Israel” and not to the entire world. As you read through the gospels, you will notice the places He traveled and the majority of His workings were all among the Jews. The gospel would eventually be spread to the whole world, but Jesus specific mission was to focus on Israel.
    Matthew 10:6; 22:9
  • “The lost sheep”—the people of God were “lost” meaning they have become spiritually alienated from God. They have left faith in God and were now trusting in their traditions and the works of the law as a way to become righteous. Jesus came to show them the right way and then through them establish the church which would spread the good news of salvation to the entire world.

15:25-28 Jesus Works A Miracle Because Of Great Faith

  • 15:25-26 The woman finally caught up with Jesus and worshipped Him, saying, “Lord, help me.” Her faith was humble and persistent. She knew she needed Jesus’ help. But Jesus responds to her in a surprisingly manner that seems almost offensive on the surface (because we don’t know the tone and manner in which he said it) saying: “It is not meet to take the children’s bread, and to cast it to dogs.” This proverbial statement refers to the woman who is a Gentile as the “dog,” the Jews as the “children,” and God’s blessings as the “bread.” What Jesus is saying that in family life the children will be cared for first and then the pets will be cared for second. No family would first take care of the pets at the expense of the children. This points to the priority of Jesus mission to reach the Jews first.
  • 15:27 The women responds to Jesus. First, she agrees with Jesus, saying, “Truth, Lord.” Second, she adds to the proverbial statement by saying that even the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table. She was not trying to say that she was part of Israel (she knew her place in the illustration), but she was hoping that there would still be some mercy shown to her even though she wasn’t the main aim of Jesus’ mission on earth. She was showing that even though she wasn’t in the realm of the “people of God” that she still had faith in the Jesus to meet her needs.
  • 15:28 Jesus recognizes that her answer showed her faith in Him and said unto her, “O woman, great is thy faith.” Jesus says her faith was remarkable or that it was more than just the ordinary degree of faith. Because of that, He granted her request to be done and her daughter was made whole instantly.

Review Questions

  • Who came seeking Jesus?
  • What did we learn from her request to Jesus?
  • What was priority in Jesus earthly mission?
  • What proverbial statement did Jesus say to the women? How did she respond?
  • Did the women get her request granted? Why?