The Syrophoenician Women

Mark 7: 24-30

The Actual Story (New American Gospel)

24: From that place he went off to the district of Tyre. He entered a house and wanted no one to know about it, but he could not escape notice.

25: Soon a woman whose daughter had an unclean spirit heard about him. She came and fell at his feet.

26: The woman was a Greek, a Syrophoenician by birth, and she begged him to drive the demon out of her daughter.

27: He said to her, “Let the children be fed first. For it is not right to take the food of the children and throw it to the dogs.”

28: She replied and said to him, “Lord, even the dogs under the table eat the children’s scraps.”

29: Then he said to her, “For saying this, you may go. The demon has gone out of your daughter.”

30: When the woman went home, she found the child lying in bed and the demon gone.

Historical View on the Story

The story starts out with Jeusus in Tyre, a mainly Gentile area. There was a Greek woman, Syrophoenician by birth, and she had a daughter that had an unclean spirit. The woman heard about Jesus and came and fell at his feet. The Gentile woman begged Jesus to drive the demon out of her daughter. Jesus metaphorically said to her, "Let the children be fed first. For it is not right to take the food of the children and throw it to the dogs." The figure of a household in which children at the table are fed first and then their scraps are thrown to the dogs is used to symbolize the Jews as the children on the table and the dogs under the table as the Gentiles. Even though Jesus is prejudice against the woman, the woman responds, "Lord, even the dogs under the table eat the childern's scraps." Once she says this Jesus realizes that she has faith in him even though he was prejudice against her. From here on out Jesus is the Messiah for all, Jews and Gentiles. Finally Jesus heals her daughter and drives the demon out.

Understanding the Intercalation

This is the third time a women is mentioned as a charcter in Mark's gospel. The woman that approches Jesus for help is a Gentile. Jesus is not perfect, he is prejudice. Jesus was the Messiah for only Jews. He viewed the Jews as greater people, or better than the Gentiles. After Jesus realized that the woman had faith in him, he realized that he is the Messiah of all.

THINGS TO REMEMBER

This story of the Syrophoenician woman is a miracle story. A miracle story is a story that has a deep meaning and shows the power of God. This story has a deep meaning because it shows Jesus as imperfect because of his prejudices. This is probably how the real historical Jesus was. It also shows the power of god because it shows that Jesus is more powerful than the demons that were in the woman's daughter.