Is Jesus surprised by your faith?

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We know from the following stories of the Bible when Jesus was surprised by some people who encountered Jesus:

“Leaving that place, Jesus withdrew to the region of Tyre and Sidon. A Canaanite woman from that vicinity came to him, crying out, ‘Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me! My daughter is demon-possessed and suffering terribly.’

Jesus did not answer a word. So his disciples came to him and urged him, ‘Send her away, for she keeps crying out after us.’

He answered, ‘I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.’

The woman came and knelt before him. ‘Lord, help me!’ she said.

He replied, ‘It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to the dogs.’

‘Yes it is, Lord,’ she said. ‘Even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their master’s table.’

Then Jesus said to her, ‘“Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.’ And her daughter was healed at that moment” Matthew 15:21-28 NIV.

This woman knew Jesus’ absolute authority and power to deal with her need, which is, healing her demon-possessed daughter, even she was crying out for help to Jesus. Jesus gave her seemingly the cold shoulder because Jesus mission was to help first His own flock (children). That is why Jesus replied to her by saying, “It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to the dogs.” Since the woman was not in His flock (children), but of His outsiders (dogs), Jesus had to prioritize his mission to His own children first based on the fact that He was sent to the lost sheep of the house of Israel (v. 24). At this point, you and I might stop asking for help to Jesus mainly because we might think we should admit that His word is always final. This woman was, on the contrary, pointing the real nature of the principle of saving grace to Jesus. By her reply to Jesus, she simply focused on the “outsiders” who even can be shared salvation through God’s children. Can you believe that Jesus, whose word created all things, was surprised by the depth of her word of faith? Can you win an “argument” of faith with the Creator Jesus?

How about another story?

“When Jesus had finished saying all this to the people who were listening, he entered Capernaum. There a centurion’s servant, whom his master valued highly, was sick and about to die. The centurion heard of Jesus and sent some elders of the Jews to him, asking him to come and heal his servant. When they came to Jesus, they pleaded earnestly with him, ‘This man deserves to have you do this, because he loves our nation and has built our synagogue.’ So Jesus went with them.

He was not far from the house when the centurion sent friends to say to him: ‘Lord, don’t trouble yourself, for I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. That is why I did not even consider myself worthy to come to you. But say the word, and my servant will be healed. For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and that one, ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.

When Jesus heard this, he was amazed at him, and turning to the crowd following him, he said, ‘I tell you, I have not found such great faith even in Israel.’ Then the men who had been sent returned to the house and found the servant well” Luke 7:1-10 NIV.

This Roman centurion believed the authority of Jesus’ word as he did in his command to his soldiers and servants who listened and followed his every word. The centurion made himself humble that he was not worthy to face Jesus. Even he might believe his words of authority were given by God (“Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God.” Romans 13:1 NIV). Jesus said He had not found such great faith among His own flock (children) even in Israel. Is Jesus surprised by your word of faith? – T

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