|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
7:24-30 Christ never put any from him that fell at his feet, which a poor trembling soul may do. As she was a good woman, so a good mother. This sent her to Christ. His saying, Let the children first be filled, shows that there was mercy for the Gentiles, and not far off. She spoke, not as making light of the mercy, but magnifying the abundance of miraculous cures among the Jews, in comparison with which a single cure was but as a crumb. Thus, while proud Pharisees are left by the blessed Saviour, he manifests his compassion to poor humbled sinners, who look to him for children's bread. He still goes about to seek and save the lost.
Verse 28. - In this verse there is a slight change of reading, causing a change of rendering; namely, thus: Yea, Lord: even - καὶ instead of καὶ γὰρ the dogs τὰ κυνάρια the little dogs - under the table eat of the children's crumbs. Observe the antithesis: "the children" (the little daughter) sitting at the table; the "little dogs" under the table. It is as though she said, "Give me, most gracious Lord, only a crumb (a small mercy compared with thy greater mercies), the healing of my little daughter, which may fall as it were obiter from thee upon us Canaanites and Gentiles, and be gratefully picked up as one of thy lesser benefits." Cornelius a Lapide enlarges beautifully upon this: "Feed me, then, as a little dog. To me, a poor Gentile, let a crumb of thy grace and mercy be vouchsafed; but let the full board, the plentiful bread of grace and righteousness, be reserved for the Jewish children. I cannot leave the table of my Lord, whose little dog I am. No; if you spurn me away with your foot, or with a blow, I will go away; but I will come back again, like a little dog, through another door. I will not be driven away by blows. I will not let thee go until thou hast given me what I ask of thee.' For this Canaanite constrains Christ, arguing her case from his own words, prudently, modestly, forcibly, and with a humble faith which perceives that he is not unwilling to be overcome by petition and by reason. Indeed, she entangles him in the meshes of his own words. So great is the plenteousness of his table, that it shall abundantly suffice for her if she may but partake of the crumbs which fall from the table of his children."
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And she answered and said unto him, yes, Lord,.... Agreeing to, and acquiescing in, what he said; which she seemed to have understood, though delivered in a proverbial way; and very appropriately replies,
yet the dogs under the table eat of the children's crumbs; which they leave, or let fall: signifying that she did not envy the blessings of the Jews, or desire any thing might be done injurious to them; only that this favour might be granted her, which she owned she was unworthy of, that her daughter might be healed. She tacitly owns, that the character of dogs belonged to the Gentiles, and to her and hers among the rest; that they were vile and base in themselves, inferior to the Jews, as to privileges, like dogs under the table; that the provisions with which the table of the Gospel ministry was furnished, was not for them; at least, that they were quite undeserving of them: but however, whereas dogs were allowed to eat crumbs, which now and then fell from the table, or out of the children's hands and laps; so such unworthy Gentiles as she, might be allowed a small benefit or favour by the bye, when it did not take from, and was no disadvantage to the Jews; See Gill on Matthew 15:27.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
28. And she answered and said unto him, Yes, Lord—or, as the same word is rendered in Mt 15:27. "Truth, Lord."
yet the dogs eat of the children's crumbs—"which fall from their master's table" (Mt 15:27). "I thank Thee, O blessed One, for that word! That's my whole case. Not of the children? True. A dog? True also: Yet the dogs under the table are allowed to eat of the children's crumbs—the droppings from their master's full table: Give me that, and I am content: One crumb of power and grace from Thy table shall cast the devil out of my daughter." Oh, what lightning quickness, what reach of instinctive ingenuity, do we behold in this heathen woman!
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