Daughter, take courage.

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. Six times He spoke, separating light from darkness and water from land, calling into life all vegetation, plants and trees. He made the two great lights, the stars also, and placed them in the expanse of heaven. He formed all fish, the great sea monsters, and every winged bird after its kind. And then He filled the earth with all beasts, cattle and creeping things.

These six acts of creative genius and power God performed, and six times He saw that what He had made was good (Gen. 1:4, 10, 12, 18, 21, 25).

But the text tells us that after His creation of man, God saw that what He had made was not good (2:18). Adam was alone, incomplete. Only after God’s final creation, woman, Adam’s strong companion and ally, only then does Adam himself declare God’s creation complete in its goodness. “This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh” (Gen. 2:23).

But the joy of their union would not last. The text next recounts the fall of mankind, that cataclysmic event which sent us all spiralling into conflict, sadness, unfruitfulness and pain. In Adam, in this failed Christ, all God’s creation stumbled. The things that were easy and joyful became difficult and painful. The beautiful and fruitful earth became rocky and thorns grew up. The comfort and wonder of having children became painful and difficult. And the desire that the woman felt for her husband’s love and companionship was corrupted by neglect, control and abuse (Gen. 3).

Yesterday, I wrote about three colours of the gospel, blue, red and purple, woven together into pomegranates to adorn the hems of the Levitical priests (Ex. 28: 31-34).

But it wasn’t just the priests who were to wear colour. On the four corners of their garments, the LORD told all sons of Israel to attach a tassel and on each tassel a cord of the divine blue of holiness (Num. 15:37-41), a sign of the obedience which God required of the people He saved, righteousness they could and would never achieve by themselves.

And as Matthew tells us,
it is this tassel on the garments of Jesus, Son of David, son of Israel,
it is this blue cord of God’s holiness,
it is these things that a woman, suffering a flow of blood for 12 years, reaches out and touches by faith.
And immediately the woman is healed, a sign to her and to all who were there (Matt. 9:18-22). A sign of the Divine come down to earth to rescue His Creation from the sin and death of the garden and to seat His Bride, pinnacle of His Creation, in honour with Him in the heavenly places.

20 And a woman who had been suffering from a hemorrhage for twelve years, came up behind Him and touched the fringe of His cloak; 
21 for she was saying to herself, “If I only touch His garment, I will get well.” 
22 But Jesus turning and seeing her said, “Daughter, take courage; your faith has made you well.” At once the woman was made well.


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