How Can I have Great Faith?

How can I have great faith- Matthew 15:21-28

  1. Great Faith is spiritual
  • 21 Then Jesus went out from there and departed to the region of Tyre and Sidon. 22 And behold, a woman of Canaan came from that region and cried out to Him, saying, “Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David! My daughter is severely demon-possessed.”
  • This lady here- (and we don’t have the back story) has realized that the problem that her daughter is having is a demon possession- she goes so far as to say “severely demon possessed” 
  • And some people would argue that back then they didn’t understand mental issues like we do today- 
  • That may be true- what is also true is that demon possession is real and you can’t fix a spiritual problem with a physical solution. It doesn’t work that way. 
  • Ephesians 6:12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.
  • 2 Corinthians 10:3-4 For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. 4 For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds,
  • We see many times in the Gospel that Jesus healed and delivered people from the power of the Devil
  • I was a psych major- I did mental health in the Army. I know the diagnoses and I know the medications
  • There’s many people I know- even in this church who take drugs for mental stuff. No condemnation. 
  • I also know that everything isn’t a medical problem. Everything can’t be fixed by medicine. It just cant
  • What this woman figured out was her daughter was demon possessed and the only way  for her daughter to be delivered was to come to Jesus- 
  • Only Jesus could deliver her daughter from this Demon possession- She came to Jesus in Faith, believing that she could be delivered from her possessed situation. 
  • This is a woman that understands the spiritual component of life. Many people do not
  • There has been a push over the past few centuries to minimise the spiritual. To make everything physical. There’s a balance here between pragmatism and spirituality. 
  • There’s not a demon on your body when you don’t take care of it. You are not under attack. 
  • But also- everything isn’t  going to be fixed by a doctor (doctors just make the body work) 
  • John 6:63 It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life.
  • What does it mean to you
  • Are you discounting the spiritual component of your life and only focusing on the physical?
  • Are there things in your life that you need to have Dr Jesus come in and deliver you from?
  • First step- get saved- 1 Corinthians 2:14 But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
  • If you’re not saved in here this morning- you might think I’m a nutball- its ok. Get saved. 
  • 1 Corinthians 1:18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.
  • I’ve seen people delivered from Demonic influences- minds changed- clear discernment
  • I’ve prayed demons out of my house- (trouble in 2019 praying over the church) 
  • Here’s what I know-Romans 8:5-8 READ
  • I know theres a spiritual component to life- I want Jesus in that realm. 
  • I know that I have a spirit body
  • 1 Corinthians 15:44 It is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.
  • I know I have the spirit of God- 
  • 1 Corinthians 2:12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God.
  • I know that I’m supposed to live in the spriit Gal 5:25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. GREAT FAITH IS SPIRITUAL and I want GREAT FAITH
great faith
  1. Great faith is persistent
  • Read 23-25 Then she came and worshiped Him, saying, “Lord, help me!”
  • Jesus was sent to the Jews- not the gentiles. Yes- salvation came to the gentiles, but the first step to the messianic purpose was to reach the Jews- and in this instance he rebuffs her as a means to keep her at arms length- to not heal her daughter- (seems out of character to most peoples interpretation of Jesus- but its clear- he said no- I’m not here for you)
  • But this woman wouldn’t take no for an answer. Strong woman that Jesus says has “great faith” 
  • Why? She was persistent. She didn’t take no for an answer. She didn’t just give up. 
  • Its like the parable of the persistent widow- Luke 18:1-5
  • Jesus rewards persistence. He rewards not giving up based on what his word says
  • Luke 11:9-10 “So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.
  • This is Bible- But for some reason- people throw up some half hearted prayer hoping it will change the world. Doesn’t work that way. Be persistent! Don’t give up! 
  • Galatians 6:9 And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.
  • What does it mean to you
  • Are you being persistent in your faith or are you just giving it a half-hearted attention
  • When you pray- will you pray for days, weeks, months and years to see your prayers answered?
  • Abraham waited 20 years for his son Isaac- 20 years! Don’t give up on your prayers! 
  • 1 Corinthians 15:58 Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.
  • You can’t lose heart- and I get it- many people use unanswered prayers as a reason why they aren’t going to serve God anymore- because they didn’t get what they want- 
  • But what if you’re just on the other side of that answer? What if its right there and you give up?
  • I don’t know how or why or when God answers prayers but I know he does- sometimes eventually. 
  • 1 John 5:15 And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.
  • HE hears you! He hears you praying for deliverance, and healing, and provision- He HEARS
  • We prayed for 11 years for this building- 11 years! I really never thought it would happen
  • And I don’t know what you pray for- I really don’t. But I DO know that persistence pays off!
  • Philippians 3:14 I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
  1. Great Faith is Humble
  • 26 But He answered and said, “It is not good to take the children’s bread and throw it to the little dogs.” 27 And she said, “Yes, Lord, yet even the little dogs eat the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table.”
  • This is a very interesting part of the scriptures- Jesus here calls this woman an mongrel as another means of getting her to stop pestering him about this healing- 
  • And what he calls her here is literally a mongrel- a dog. It’s a huge put down here
  • Some scholars say it was a racial epithet. Which again, is an interesting thing about Jesus
  • But here’s what’s impactful about this woman in this instance- whatever Jesus said and whatever her disposition- she humbles herself to get Jesus to see that she will take what she can get from Jesus “even the little dogs eat the crumbs” 
  • That’s humility- A more demanding response would be to challenge everything about Jesus and berate him into a blessing
  • “how dare you speak to me this way” “you call yourself a savior” “who are you anyway” 
  • Nope- If you could just spare a crumb-that’ll be enough for me. 
  • Proverbs 22:4 By humility and the fear of the Lord Are riches and honor and life.
  • She had humility- and she got the riches she wanted- deliverance for her daughter- 
  • Proverbs 11:2 When pride comes, then comes shame; But with the humble is wisdom.
  • Such wisdom from this woman! Just humble yourself before God! Put it before him!
  • What does it mean to you?
  • James 4:6 But He gives more grace. Therefore He says: “God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.”
  • God does resist the proud- He doesn’t appreciate pride based on his word
  • How can you uncover pride in your heart? 
  • What do you think you deserve? Both from God and others?
  • How do you view yourself in light of your salvation?
  • Do you demand things from God and others?
  • Do you think something is beyond you or not you shouldn’t have to do something?
  • Do you have an honest assessment of who you are and where you have come from?
  • Proverbs 15:33 The fear of the Lord is the instruction of wisdom, And before honor is humility.
  • That’s right- if you don’t humble yourself don’t expect God and others to honor you. Wont work
  • James 4:10 Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.
  • Its God who promotes- its God who sets free- Its God who heals and delivers
  • Under what obligation is God required to do what you say?
  • Luke 14:11 For whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”
  • That’s a promise! 
  • Psalm 149:4 For the Lord takes pleasure in His people; He will beautify the humble with salvation.

Great Faith is rewarded

  • 28 Then Jesus answered and said to her, “O woman, great is your faith! Let it be to you as you desire.” And her daughter was healed from that very hour.
  • We said it before but I’ll say it again- 
  • Proverbs 22:4 By humility and the fear of the Lord Are riches and honor and life.
  • She wasn’t given riches- but she was given something far more valuable- her daughter back! She Got her daughter back to her in a healed condition that that’s what she wanted! 
  • Because of this womans spirituality, persistence and humbleness- she is given this magnificent healing for her daughter and Jesus even goes so far as to say “Great is your faith”
  • She got what she wanted because of her persistence! 
  • She was rewarded because of her faith- 
  • Here’s the truth- faithful people always eventually get blessed- They just do. Not necessarily with ‘riches’ but they are ‘rich’ beyond measure- they walk different and talk different. 
  • What does it mean to you
  • Do you live with an expectation of rewards? Have you forgotten the scriptures?
  • Hebrews 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.
  • God rewards and rewards are promised in the scripture and there is no problem with believing that
  • James 1:12 he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him. Colossians 3:23-24 And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, 24 knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ. Matthew 16:27 For the Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and then He will reward each according to his works.1 Peter 5:4 and when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that does not fade away.Revelation 22:12 “And behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to give to every one according to his work. Philippians 3:14 I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
  • I want you to realize that your diligence in serving God is not in vain- God does reward! 
  • So To have great faith- you have to be spiritual, diligent and humble and you WILL have great faith!
    Faith that moves mountains- faith that sets free- faith that endures! 

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