In which there are black, purple, white, and yellow daisies

by Craig on June 23, 2011

Yesterday I discovered a long ignored and radical white daisy.

source

Today I pick more daisies…

if this is your first time to our biblical study of daisies…
this post, right here is blooming full of daisy goodness…
and it’s really necessary for any of this to make sense.

Anyway…

next is a purple daisy…

Jesus answered and said to them, “I performed one work and all of you are amazed… (JN 7:21)

Purple daisies are miracles – and miracles aren’t what James refers to when he says “faith without works is dead”. I want to know fully what James meant – so purple daisies I leave where I find them.

The next Daisy comes in one of our Lord’s patented tirades against the Pharisees. First he confuses them with truth. They defend themselves, appealing to their ancestry. Then Jesus lays down one white, and one black daisy.

If you were Abraham’s children, you would be doing the works of Abraham. (JN 8:39)

The biggest “works” of Abraham…

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…were his white daisies of faith (GEN 15:6).

Then Our Lord scorches them…

You are doing the works of your father! (JN 8:41)

Their father was the Evil One (v. 44) and here are just some of their black daisies:

They were…

•    turning away from the Son of God
•    seeking to silence him, to kill him
•    debating him, to trip him up and not to understand
•    being deceitful
•    depending upon their own version of “truth” and blinding their eyes to real “truth”
•    dismissing Jesus as a vessel of the Evil One

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Black daisies all.

The next daisy is purple, so I skip it (JN 9:3).

But the very next verse refers to a bunch of daisies…

We have to do the works of the one who sent me while it is day. Night is coming when no one can work. (JN 9:4)

Our Lord’s obvious primary “work” was to save humanity from sin – a huge purple daisy – and he had a limited amount of time to accomplish it. Along the way he performed miracles – more purple daisies.

But without his white, and even yellow daisies, the miracles and teaching would’ve gone for naught. If he was acting without love, if he violated the worship of God as it stood at the time – if he didn’t celebrate Passover, or the feasts, or broke the spirit of the law of Moses, the Pharisees wouldn’t have had to make up false reasons to Crucify him – they would have had an actual case.

So clearly his work was full of white daisies…

source

… and yellow ones too.

And I ask myself,
in addition to a daisy count,
what do I take away and use today?

This prayer…

(** a later edit – there was a prayer here – I promise – it was nice too –  I don’t remember the words – but it was nice – I promise – and it did exist!)

(◠‿◠)

Amen.

Tomorrow…

more daisies…

{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

Dawn June 23, 2011 at 11:55 am

Craig,

“If he was acting without love…” I never thought about Jesus having to act in love or even HIS works would be nothing. This was quite a concept for me. Jesus HAD to act in love, therefore, EVERYTHING He did was love in action. I never thought of His life quite in these terms. There were sometimes when He didn’t seem loving to me (Proverbs 14:12). THAT will be MY daisy study!!!! Oh, no…

It’s raining on daisies here,
Dawn

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Craig June 23, 2011 at 1:45 pm

that would be a good study – I’m curious, when did Jesus look like wasn’t being quite so loving. I think I know when you might be going – because when I began studying James, and noticed how similar his words were to Jesus, and how James had the rap of being a stickler for rules, and not all warm and fuzzy like his brother – and then took a real close look at his brother and realized his brother wasn’t all warm and fuzzy all the time – well – I’m wondering if you’re going where I went – just curious :-) it’s intermittently sunny – and comfortably warm – but no rain on the daisies here in St. Louis. God bless you Dawn.

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Dawn June 23, 2011 at 5:20 pm

Craig,

The “unloving” time that bothers me the most is when Jesus called the Syrophoenician woman a dog. The muttlies don’t understand why that bothers me. It’s one of those cultural “things,” right? You said, “if he violated the worship of God as it stood at the time” the Pharisees would have had reason to accuse Him. Well, we’re still in the time of the chosen people at this point and this woman wasn’t among the chosen. What’s your take on this?

She wins in the end and I love that. He elevates her above the chosen people by telling her she has great faith. Only two in the Gospels are given that designation and they were both Gentiles. The other was the centurion.

Shelly, the chief dog around here just reflected, “Dogs 1, Israelites 0”. Being female and a canine she thought her opinion should count double.

God bless you back,
Dawn

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Craig June 24, 2011 at 11:42 am

Dawn, between your answer to your own question – and Layla’s comment, and Michelle’s I really have nothing further to add. Except it’s like when he addressed his mom at the wedding feast as “woman” – it seems not loving to our ears, my ears, but it’s not. God bless you Dawn.

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Layla Payton June 23, 2011 at 11:46 pm

Dawn, I believe that Jesus was testing both this Gentile woman, and his disciples, by his response. At this time, the disciples still believed that the Pharisees were godly men. However, the Pharisees treated the Gentiles no better than dogs.
Jesus used a response that the Pharisees would have given her to show the disciples that these guys were not great men of God. The Spirit allowed her to see/believe that Jesus had grace for her, so she didn’t give up. Jesus was demonstrating a Pharisee attitude, to his disciples, so they could see how wrong it was. Then, He treated her with love, because she continued to seek His healing power, and grace.

I hope that made sense, it has been a LONG day! I know you asked Craig, but your question caused me to desire a study on this. So, I thank you. :)

It is raining on the daisies in OK,
Layla

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Craig June 24, 2011 at 11:44 am

I want to thank you Leila – that was a perfect answer to the question. I’ve gotten a day behind on replying to my comments – and I feel guilty about that. It helps to know that there were people like you coming by and filling in, in my absence. I heart that a lot! And today in St. Louis it’ll be about 90° and mostly sunny on the daisies. God bless you Layla – and thank you again.

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Michelle June 24, 2011 at 4:14 am

Dawn and Layla, we had a sermon on this passage (Mark 7:24-30) earlier in the year which was interesting.
In the passage prior to this, the pharisees were trying fault Jesus and his disciples, but all they could come up with was that they had not washed their hands prior to eating (1 The Pharisees and some of the teachers of the law who had come from Jerusalem gathered around Jesus 2 and saw some of his disciples eating food with hands that were defiled, that is, unwashed….5 So the Pharisees and teachers of the law asked Jesus, “Why don’t your disciples live according to the tradition of the elders instead of eating their food with defiled hands?”)
Jesus’ response to them was that it was what was inside a person’s heart that made them unclean, not the outer body. (17 After he had left the crowd and entered the house, his disciples asked him about this parable. 18 “Are you so dull?” he asked. “Don’t you see that nothing that enters a person from the outside can defile them? 19 For it doesn’t go into their heart but into their stomach, and then out of the body.” (In saying this, Jesus declared all foods clean.) 20 He went on: “What comes out of a person is what defiles them. 21 For it is from within, out of a person’s heart, that evil thoughts come—sexual immorality, theft, murder, 22 adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. 23 All these evils come from inside and defile a person.”)

He then (to prove a point?!) when to Tyre – an unclean region.
And entered an unclean house.
Spoke to an unclean woman.
Whose daughter has an unclean spirit.
Jesus’ response to this woman when she asked healing for her daughter was: 27 “First let the children eat all they want,” he told her, “for it is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to the dogs.” – the children being the Jewish people, the ‘dogs’ being gentile. Jesus was doing heart surgery on the Syrophoenician woman.
This woman was Greek, an outcast, in a region which had judgment coming on it (Tyre), with a demon-possessed child.
She accepted the label ‘dog’ – as she was not good enough (didn’t live up to the Pharisee’s standards); and for the sake of her daughter, sought out Jesus, a Jew.
She did not allow herself to be directed by the inner message [those voices again] telling her to ‘Stay away, you’re unclean!’
In doing this, she discovered the Grace of a Saviour who has broken down the walls between the gentiles and the Jews and reaches out to all in need, without discrimination. She had faith, went home and found her daughter healed.
(A lot of this is taken from my notes as I wanted to get it right.)

Sorry Craig, I seem to have taken over your blog here. But there is so much in this little passage. I hope this helps both Layla and Dawn.

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Craig June 24, 2011 at 11:47 am

So I could’ve hit the books, or thought deeply about it, or searched online, or asked some people about the answer to Dawn’s question – but apparently I have brilliant people reading me – and in my absence you provided a beautiful answer – actually I think better than what I would have. Thank you for that. I heart that. And feel free to take over my blog when ever you want to – I’m sure it helped Leila – I’m sure it helped Dawn – and I know it helped me :-) God bless you Michelle.

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Debbie June 24, 2011 at 11:55 pm

So blessed to be here and after reading and learning in the comments section . . .I need to go and reread the post. :) Okay, did that and see that Jesus had to cover every daisy color. Which He did amazingly well . . .of course!
God bless you and all your daisies today!

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Craig June 25, 2011 at 8:45 am

I’m really beginning to heart my daisies. I never hearted “works” – they didn’t seem very heartable – the daisies are. Thank you Debbie – and God bless you.

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Dawn June 25, 2011 at 12:19 am

Layla and Michelle,

Thanks for taking the time to really help me with these excellent explanations, and then there’s you, Craig who offered to listen more. I am at the beginning of a 5 day stretch at the hospital. It beats me down, as you know, but I really really REALLY appreciate the offer. Perhaps when I pick up the manuscript again (and, believe me I wasn’t going to do that) before the church assembled and got me back up on my feet.

Love you sisters and brother,
Dawn

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Craig June 25, 2011 at 8:47 am

A. Called it the church of Craig and Laska once – it’s not quite a church – but I think it is developing into a ministry of sorts. God bless you Dawn .

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Dawn June 25, 2011 at 9:18 am

Interesting that you should mention A. I miss her “voice” here. I think she is on a trip with her husband, but she should be checking in soon. I hope she passes by and sees all we’ve been up to!

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Layla Payton June 26, 2011 at 12:50 pm

Oh, feel free to elaborate/correct me any time. I am in no way a Bible scholar…just a girl with a Bible. 😉

Blessings,
Layla

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Layla Payton June 26, 2011 at 12:51 pm

…I mean: A girl, her Bible, and Jesus.

Thank you for the kind words, Craig. :)

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Craig June 26, 2011 at 12:58 pm

Layla, just a girl with a Bible and Jesus can be one of the most powerful forces in the universe. Being a “bible scholar” is uber-over rated :) I heart what you have to say!! God Bless!!

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Layla Payton June 26, 2011 at 3:36 pm

Thank you, Craig. 😀

I came back on here to STRONGLY suggest that you write & publish a book on this. This is a very UNIQUE, and easy to understand concept. Not easy to write, as it is clear that you are in deep study, but easy for the rest of us to take in. At the same time, it causes us to think deeper, challenges us to search for “daisies, ” and encourages us to find the truth behind what we may have misconceptions about. Or, that we expound upon what we already know. (As with daisies, we need to grow.) It’s always good to get into the Word, and see things with fresh eyes…er, daisies. :)

It’s over 100 degrees on these here Okie daisies,
Layla

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A. June 28, 2011 at 11:18 am

My daisies are dusty because I have been gone, but I am glad I caught up here. I, too, had always had niggling pains at the woman being called a dog. I am glad it was cleared up so well here.

Layla, I agree…Craig should write several different books based on things he has done in his blogs.

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