Just then, a Canaanite woman from that region came out and started shouting: “Have mercy, Lord, Son of David, my daughter is tormented by a demon”.
Titles of Jesus – Son of David
Jesus never sought titles. Perhaps his own name “Jesus” was enough. He was a rescuer, a restorer, a releaser. Once you have a title you are pigeon-holed, boxed, imprisoned. Simply to be identified as a child of God is the highest of all callings. When it came to titles,it was other people who seemed to want to shower them on Jesus. They even put titles over his cross.
Luke and Matthew, in their birth stories, made sure the world knew that Jesus was from David’s royal line. The birth narratives centred on Bethlehem, David’s home. When Jesus entered Jerusalem for the last time he was greeted as a royal visitor with palms and hosannas. How the Jewish people longed for a king. It had been a thousand years.
When a Canaanite woman plucked up the courage to bring her heartfelt need to Jesus, she attracted his attention by shouting out the title “Son of David”. The disciples wanted to turn her away. Jesus said “No”. Then the fun began. Unafraid, she took him on in conversation. Jesus was impressed. This Son of David was not remote. Like the shepherd king of history, he valued every sheep in the flock.
David means “beloved”. No better pedigree. We are all children of a loving God, and if loved, then sharers of that love in our day, our time, our place.
Loving God, our demented world cries out for your love and peace, enable us to respond warmly to cries for help; may we grow more loving because we have engaged with others, be they friends or strangers; and may Jesus’ humility and openness be our guide every day. Amen.
The Rev’d David Jenkins is a retired minister in Marple, Cheshire