What is true faith? We talk about faith all the time. When we call someone to follow Jesus, we tell them to have faith in Him. When someone is struggling, we encourage them to exercise faith. We use salvation and faith interchangeable. Faith is a word we use all the time, but what does it mean? For the next few weeks I will answer that question.
The Faith of the Canaanite Woman
The Canaanite woman in Matthew 15:21-28 serves as an excellent example of faith. Over the next few days we will glean four things faith is from her story.
(1) True Faith Believes
The Canaanite woman believed. She believed Jesus could heal her daughter. She believed that because she recognized Jesus was Lord and the Son of David. These titles reveal a good deal about Jesus and the content of believing faith.
1. Jesus is Lord, He has authority over all things.
By calling Jesus Lord, the Canaanite Woman recognized rightly He is the One who directs her life. He is the One who has the right to call the shots in her life. The same goes for you and I.
You see, if we place our faith in Jesus, we allow and trust Jesus to direct our lives. As well as we submit every aspect of our lives to Jesus. He is our Lord, our King.
2. Jesus is the Son of David, He is the Father’s chosen Savior, the Messiah.
By calling Jesus the Son of David, the Canaanite Woman believed there is no other way to the Father but through Jesus. She recognized He is the only way. He is God’s chosen One. Essentially, she recognized nothing but belief in Jesus could right her relationship with God.
Connected to the belief that Jesus is the only way to God is the idea that we can do nothing to earn a relationship with God. We can’t work our way to God. We can’t repair our own relationship with Him. Only Jesus can repair our relationship with God.
Jesus is the only One who lived a perfect and righteous life, so He is the only One who doesn’t deserve God’s punishment, which means He is the only One who can take our punishment for us.
On the cross Jesus does just that, hanging in our place. As our substitute, He takes God’s wrath for us. In other words, God pours His wrath out on Jesus instead of us, even though we are the One’s who deserve punishment.
The Content of True Faith
So far we see true faith believes. It specifically believes Jesus is Lord and the Son of David. He is our authority and the only way to a reconciled relationship with the Father.
Questions for Reflection
- Do you believe Jesus is your Lord?
- Do you believe Jesus is the only way to the Father?
Post adapted from my most recent sermon The Faith of a Canaanite Woman