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The question was not of cleanliness, but of ritual. This washing of hands to remove imaginary evil was a part of the tradition of the elders. Against the binding of such burdens on men our Lord passionately protests. 'The commandment of God" (verse Mat 15:3 ). This is the one and only burden that men ought to bear, and this fact our Lord proceeded to enforce by illustration and teaching.
Then going into Tyre and Sidon, we have one of the sweetest stories of them all-the mother heart carrying the need of her daughter with unswerving faith to Him who had created the love of mother! How strange at first appear His silence and rebuff. The reason for His attitude is revealed in the result which followed. He knew how strong her faith was, and His method manifested that faith in all its beauty. How perpetually the very best of character is hidden, until for its forth-shining our King seems to hide His face.
Another manifestation of the unlimited resources, unmeasured power, and ungrudging grace of the King follows. These people were most probably heathen or semi-heathen, gathered from the region of Decapolis ( Mar 7:31 ). Our Lord had confined His journeyings and ministry to the chosen people to whom He had been sent, but true to the divine intention concerning that chosen people, when strangers and aliens came to Him He gave them blessing without stint.
What a marvelous exhibition we have of the slowness of faith in these disciples, who, notwithstanding what they had seen the Master do with five loaves and two fishes among 5,000 men, yet questioned Him how they should feed a smaller crowd, 4,000 men, with more supplies, seven loaves and a few fishes. Yet are we much better than they? How often past deliverances seem to have no power to deliver us from present anxiety.
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Morgan, G. Campbell. "Commentary on Matthew 15". "Morgan's Exposition on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/
the Week of Christ the King / Proper 29 / Ordinary 34