Title:  Where should we Go with the Gospel?


Summary:  During his earthly ministry, Jesus occasionally ventured to nearby gentile areas, such as Pheonicia, and even ministered there.  Even though Jesus was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel, Israel was a means to an end, which is to reach the whole world with the Gospel.  In his ministry to the Canaanite Syropheonician woman, Jesus taught his disciples that he would not refuse anyone that came to him in faith, and that his plan for the church is to reach any kind of people with the Gospel.


Text:  Mk 7:24-30


Scripture Reading:  Acts 10:34-35



1.  What is the dirtiest you have ever been or seen?

          a.  There is a show on TV - Dirtiest Jobs

          b.  I think the dirties job is elementary camp counselor

          c.  Sometimes they don't change and they don't shower

          d.  Make them peel off clothes and shower for parents pick up

2.  Saying - Cleanliness is next to godliness

          a.  Jews were concerned with cleanliness

                    - Impure cannot approach God

                    - Impure are removed from the community

          b.  There were ways to be unclean

                    - Touch or eat something unclean

                    - Having dealings with people who are unclean

          c.  Jews avoided gentiles, Samaritans, Canaanites, etc.

                    - They were among the pagans, unclean

                    - They touched unclean things

                    - They engage in practices that make them unclean

3.  Jesus gets to the heart of uncleanness in Mark 7

          a.  Explanation in first few verses - Jesus meticulous in washing

     themselves and various utensils

          b.  They questioned him about his disciples eating with impure hands

                    - Jesus' disciples didn't seem to be too concerned with purity

                    - Jesus should teach them about purity and to be pure

          c.  v.14f - Jesus says that food or unwashed hands not make you unclean

                    - (v.21-23) What comes out defiles a person

                    - A dirty heart that comes out in actions and words defiles you

                    - Mt 5:8 - Blessed are the pure in heart, not hands - they see God

                    - True purity is purity of the heart

          d.  This is the backdrop for today's miracle story

4.  (Mk 7:24-30) Healing of the Syrophonecian woman

          a.  Since parable of soils in Mark 4, Jesus is focusing on teaching and

     ministry to his disciples more so than the crowd

b.  One of the purposes behind Jesus' miracles is to teach a truth or a


          c.  Look at lessons we can learn from this miracle


I.  Lesson from where Jesus goes

          A.  Went to the region of Tyre - This is significant - Background

                    1.  Tyre and Sidon Phoenician coastal cities, just a few miles apart

                    2.  Like other Canaanite cities, pagan worship

a.  Worship of Baal

b.  Worship of Astarte, associated with fertility, sexuality, and

      war (also called Ishtar, and Ashtoreth in Hebrew,

      consonants pointed with vowels for bosheth, "shame")

                    3.  So wicked, there are 2 oracles against Tyre - Isa 23; Ezek 26-28

                              a.  Ezek 28:2f - describes arrogant wickedness, that some

     thing this passage is talking about Satan

                              b.  Tyre a prime example of pagan arrogance & wickedness

          B.  Yet, Jesus goes there - A wicked and unclean gentile place

                    1.  Significant - This happens right after discussion about purity

                    2.  If food not make unclean, then gentiles & pagans wont either

                    3.  Not the only time Jesus goes to a place like this

                              a.  Country of Gerasenes - Gentile area, even herded swine,

     which were considered unclean to Jews

                              b.  Went through Samaria - They were worse than Gentiles

                              c.  After this, Mk 7:31 - to Decapolis, largely gentile area

                              d.  Jesus didn't avoid them because they unclean areas

                    4.  In a sense, the whole world is unclean, not just Gentiles

                              a.  Rom 3:10 - There is none righteous, not even one

                              b.  Rom 3:23 - All have sinned and fall short of glory of God

                              c.  Yet, Jesus came into the world in order to redeem it

          C.  ILL:  Campaign in Mulberry, ran out of houses to knock on

                    1.  Jim said - Let's go to where people are - Billiard place, a bar

                    2.  Some of us protested at first

                              a.  Not want to be around all of those evil influences

                              b.  How is it going to look? We want to stay respectable

                    3.  But Jim pointed out Jesus ate with tax collectors and sinners

                    4.  Spent some time there talking with people about God

                              a.  People there impressed we willing to talk to them

                              b.  One guy said - "You are not at all like other Christians we

     have met before"

                              c.  Dawned on us - That is how Jesus was - He not like the

     other religious leaders of the day

          D.  Jesus' purpose was to offer redemption to the world

                    1.  Jesus' earthly ministry had its focus on Israel and his disciples

                    2.  However, he would commission them to make disciples of all the


                    3.  He told them they would be his witnesses in Jerusalem, Judea,

      Samaria, and most remote part of the earth

                    4.  They not become unclean, but through the Gospel those who

      are unclean will become clean, renewed, transformed


II.  Lesson from who Jesus deals with

          A.  Growing up, I never knew what a Syrophoenician was

          B.  Closer look

1.  So who was this person?

                              a.  v.26 - She was a gentile of the Syrophoenician race

                              b.  v.25 - She had a daughter with an unclean spirit

                                        - She evidently had pagan background

                                        - Possible that she had sought help from local deities?

                    2.  She heard of Jesus, and came to him

                              a.  Fell at his feet

                              b.  She kept asking Jesus to cast out the demon

                                        - Mt 15:23 - Says she kept shouting at them

                                        - Get the idea of desperation

                    3.  Their conversation

                              a.  v.27 - Let the children be satisfied first

                              b.  Not good to take children's bread and throw it to the dogs

                              c.  Grk for dog, is kuwn - Seems to be low view of dogs

                                        - Lk 16:21 - Dogs licked sores of Lazarus

                                        - 2 Pet 2:22 - A dog returns to his own vomit

- Ps 59:14 - They (wicked) howl like a dog,

   And go around the city

- Phil 3:2 - Beware of the dogs, the evil


                                        - Mt 7:6 - Do not give what is holy to dogs

                              d.  But word in this passage is kunarion

                                        - This is a house dog, or lap dog

                                        - "ion" a diminutive - doggy, rather than just dog

                                        - Big difference between wild, alley dog and a doggy,

  or pooch

C.  ILL:  Chipper waits in corner hoping for a crumb at table after dinner

          1.  When our kids were little, might sneak morsel under the table

          2.  The dog is almost like a part of the familyh

          3.  Jesus does not appear to be insulting here

                    a.  Saying that the kids (Israel) comes first

                    b.  A blessing is coming for the gentiles afterward

D.  Woman's response - Even the doggy gets the crumbs under the table

          1.  What this shows about the woman

                    a.  Shows tremendous faith - Persistent in asking Christ

                    b.  Also reflects her humility, all she wants are the crumbs

                    c.  Reflects understanding - The crumbs of Christ a blessing

          2.  Result - Jesus heals her daughter

          3.  Jn 6:37 - Anyone who comes to me I will not cast out 

          4.  Even though Jesus in earthly ministry sent only to lost sheep of

     Israel -

                    a.  His purpose was much larger than Israel

                    b.  God's choice of Israel was not end, but means to an end

                    c.  (Isa 42:5-7-12)

                    d.  Brings me to point I want to highlight


III.  Point:  God is concerned for ALL people

          A.  God does not show partiality

1.  Rom 2:11 - There is no partiality with God

2.  Eph 6:9 - there is no partiality with Him

3.  Acts 10:34 - God is not one to show partiality

4.  John 3:16 - God so loved the world that he gave his only son

          a.  Not - God so loved the Jews

          b.  Not - God so loved only the socially respectable

          c.  But God so loved the world

          d.  This is why he said to go into all the world and preach the

     good news

          B.  Since God not show partiality, we also do not show partiality

                    1.  Jas 2:1 - My brethren, do not hold your faith in our glorious Lord

     Jesus Christ with an attitude of personal favoritism.

                    2.  We don't care how you dress, how you look, your background

                    3.  What matters to us

                              a.  You are created in image of God

                              b.  God offered redemption through Christ to you and us

                              c.  You are precious to God, therefore precious to us

          C.  ILL:  A couple visited here with all kinds of piercing

                    1.  Other places, people might stare, point, avoid them

                    2.  But to us, they are people whom God gave the best for

                    3.  We value them because God values them

          D.  We are not averse to people, any kind of people

                    1.  Like Paul in 1 Cor 9:22 - We strive to be all things to all people

     so that they may be saved through the Gospel

                    2.  This is why the church is so diverse

                              a.  ILL:  Person visiting here said, "you guys are mixed"

                              b.  We had white, black, Asians, ethnic mix

                    3.  The church is mixed in so many other ways too

                              a.  Some have criminal backgrounds

                              b.  Some formerly in homosexual lifestyle

                              c.  Some have tattoos, unique hairstyles, haircolors

                              d.  Some are Broncos fans, others are Seahawks fans

                    4.  Doesn't matter - Your heart, your humanity is what counts



1.  We know that people or places not make you unclean, your heart does

2.  The church has a mission

          a.  Where is the Tyre in your life?

          b.  Who are the Syropheonicians in your life?

          c.  Jesus told his disciples to go into all the world, not into all the church

d.  Means rolling up sleeves and getting hands dirty, but this will not make

      us impure

          - Through the Gospel, it works the other way around

          - As we share the Gospel and people respond, Jesus purifies their


3.  God loves you so much, he sent his son

          a.  May think God no love you because of horrible sins in your life

                    - Rom 5:8 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that

  while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

                    - God loves you so much, that he sent his son to die for you

          b.  Please don't get mistaken idea that his love is automatic salvation

                    -  While his love is humanly unconditional, salvation is not

                    -  God has given some very specific conditions for salvation

          c.  ILL:  If have wayward son, you know

                    - You love your son, but your love does not keep him out of trouble

                    - Staying out of trouble and doing right thing is his decision

          d.  God loves you, provided means for redemption, but being redeemed is

     now your decision (inv)

4.  Most tragic thing - Even though God loves you, to refuse it and be lost anyway

5.  Don't wait, respond to his invitation today