Wright - BT300 W8 1788

110 The NEW and COMPLETE LIFE of our BLESSED matron ; the was a Canaanite, one of that detefled race with whom the Jews would have no dealings, and with whom they difdained to converfe, and had every rea- fon to fear, that her petition would be difgufting to one of the moll eminent of the Ions of Ifrael : but, notwithftandingall' there circumflances, 'the, as an humble petitioner, threw herfelf upon the tender mercies of the benevolent Son of God : firong neceffity urged her on, grief and growing diflrefs caufed her to be importu- nate ; fuch dreadful forrow, fuels prelling difirefs furrounded 'her, it is no wonder that fhe would 'take no denial,' but pur- fued, with repeated petitions, the only perfon who was able to help. Accordingly, in the deepeftisumility of mind, with the moll refpeEffui reverence and fubmiffion, and the moft ardent, cornett, and powerful addrefs, the carne and fell at the feet of our great Redeemer ; fhe befought him, and cried, Have mercy on me, 0 Lord," thou Son of David. The earneflnefs of this woman's petition, and her calling our Lord the Son of' David, plainly indicate, that fhe believed him to be the Meffiah; the feems to have received that faith, which Was always honoured by the Son of God, and always recommended the perfons 'who poffeffed it, to his firfi regard"; and one would have expeaed, that fuch a peti- tion -would not have been rejeEled by thatbountiful andmerciful Redeemer, who went about doing good, and who kindly invited the weary and heavy-laden to come to him, with the promife of relief. This woman, being a native of Syro- phcenicia, was, no doubt, educated in all the idolatrous fuperffition of the Greeks ; but had been enabled to believe in the Son of God, and earnefily and vehemently to apply to laim for relief. And there is no reafon to doubt, but that divine Per- fon, who had enabled her to believe his ability to heal hdr daughter, and thus, with all her heart and foul, to implore his affifl- ance, beheldher with an eye oftender-pity, and flooddetermined to grant her requeft. But we find, that our Lord did not . think proper to let her know his kind in- tentions'towards her at Mt. He made no reply 'to her petition, nor did be feern to take 'the leaft notice, 'either of her, or her difirefs: but 'this filence, and kerning difregard, did not intimidate her fo far, as to induce her to defin ; but 'excited her to press her 'petition with the more camel- nefs. She continued her cries with a vehe- mence which would take no denial, till the difciples were affeaed with her grief, and became 'her advocates ; and they, however firongly they had imbibed the prejudices of their nation againtl the Gen_ tiles, befought their Matter to difmifs this troublefome petitioner, to grant her requeft, and fend her away. But Jesus foon filenced his difciples, with an anfwer agreeable to . their own prejudices ; I ant notfent, Paid he, bat to the loft 'heel of the houfe of j ael. To this, the whole train readily áfiented, they had an high opinion of the peculiar pri- vileges, and high prerogatives ofthe Jews, and looked upon the Gentiles as abfo- lately unclean, and unworthyof the leaft favour from the God of Ifrael : fo that they were entirely fatisfied with this an- fwer, and urged thematter no further. But the woman herfelf was not fo eafily prevailed on to give up her requeft : it was her own caufe; the had no hopes of relief from any other quarter; and that divine power whichhad wrought faith inher heart, and given her a full perfuafion, that Jesus was the Meffiah, and able to help her, had alfo "given her flrength and pet- feverance in her requeft. She took forte encouragement, from obferving herfelf the fubjef of converfation between CHRIST and his difciples, and, though confcious of her unworthinefs to approach fo illu; trious a perfon, yet fully convinced of his divinity, fhe worfhipped him, and prayed, Lord, help me. Our Lord now condefcended to fpeak to this humble and cornett petitioner : but his words were feemingly fuffscient to have difcouraged