After His encounter with the Pharisees from Jerusalem in the last section, and His instruction to the disciples, Jesus heads into Gentile territory to show the disciples His teaching in action. Remember that in this section, Jesus has set about to “disciple” the disciples, so they will better understand who He is and what the mission is. So far, they have come to see that He is the Son of God, but that, as big as it is, is only the beginning.
A Canaanite woman appeals to Jesus to help her demon possessed daughter; Jesus does not respond. The disciples ask Him to send her away: Jesus answers, but not their request, saying: “I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel” (15:24). That isn’t the end of the matter:
The woman came and knelt before him. “Lord, help me!” she said.
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