Whose Tzitzit’s Are You Grasping?

Eddie Rogers

NOTE: Unless otherwise noted all Scripture references are from The Scriptures Version. Any comments made are either from the The Scriptures Version translation or by Eddie Rogers.

Avoiding Truth

There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which is Proof Against All Argument, and which cannot fail to keep man in everlasting ignorance. That principle is Condemnation Before Investigation.” ~ Edmund Spencer

In the Hebrew Roots and Messianic movements, there is a great misunderstanding concerning a prophecy we find in the book of Zechariah.

Thus said YHWH of hosts, ‘In those days ten men from all languages of the nations take hold, yea, they shall take hold of the edge of the garment (kânâph/tzitzit) of a man, a Yehuḏite (Jew), saying, “Let us go with you, for we have heard that Elohim (the Mighty One/God) is with you.” ’ ” ​(Zechariah 8:23)

There are many in the Hebraic Roots and Messianic movement who follow the Messiah and they recognize the need to keep/do the Commandments written in the Torah. When they read Zechariah 8:23, they “think” that they need to find a Jewish person and ask them how to obey the Commandments written in the Torah. On the surface, this seems to be what the text is saying and many are “assuming” that the Orthodox Jews are following what is written in the Torah. This is far from the truth. Once a person discovers their need to keep and do the Commandments which are written in the Torah, they sometimes look to Judaism for their guidance.

Some people do use Zechariah 8:23 to justify their submitting to Judaism and thus follow the directions of the Rabbinic Jews, which is a grave mistake. We need to stop and take a closer look at Zechariah 8:23 to see what it is really saying.

The “kânâph/tzitzit” is sometimes referred to as “fringe, wings” or the “corner of a garment.” It is closely connected with the “tzitzit” that we read about in the book of Deuteronomy.

Make tassels (kânâph/tzitzit) on the four corners of the garment with which you cover yourself.” ​(Deuteronomy 22:12)

In the Torah (Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy), we find the primary Commandment concerning the wearing of the tzitzit. We find this Commandment in the book of Numbers.

38 Speak to the children of Yisra’ĕl, and you shall say to them to make tzitziyot (this is the plural form of tzitzit which is the singular form) of on the corners of their garments throughout their generations, and to put a blue cord in the tzitzit of the corners39 “And it shall be to you for a tzitzit, and you shall see it, and shall remember all the commands of YHWH and shall do them, and not search after your own heart and your own eyes after which you went whoring, 40 so that you remember, and shall do all My commands, and be set-apart (Holy) unto your Elohim.” 41 I am YHWH your Elohim, who brought you out of the land of Mitsrayim (Egypt), to be your Elohim. I am YHWH your Elohim.” ​(Numbers 15:38-41)

Tzitzit is the singular form of the plural form of Tzitziyot. We find the tzitzit in both the Torah and the Messianic Scriptures (New Testament). Again, the tzitzit is worn as a remembrance of the Commandments written in the Torah. Yeshua also wore the tzitzit as we see in the book of Matthew.

And see, a woman who had a flow of blood for twelve years came from behind and touched the tzitzit of His garment.” ​(Matthew 9:20)

​“35 And when the men of that place recognised Him, they sent out into all that surrounding country, and brought to Him all who were sick, 36 and begged Him to let them only touch the tzitzit of His garment. And as many as touched it were completely healed.

​(Matthew 14:35-36)

Based on what the above Scriptures are teaching us is the Tzitziyot’s are specifically meant to remind us of the Commandments written in the Torah that Almighty YHWH has given us in the Bible in order that we can do them. The Tzitziyot’s are supposed to contain a blue thread (Numbers 15:38). This is interesting in that most Orthodox Rabbinic Jews do not wear Tzitziyot’s with a blue thread. Most Jews wear only white Tzitziyot’s. So, the Commandments YHWH gave us to remind us to keep/do/obey His Commandments IS being ignored by the “traditions” of the Orthodox Rabbinic Jews.

The idea of taking hold of a Jewish man’s kânâph/tzitzit was meant to convey that the nations would one day desire to learn how to obey the Torah. We have to ask the question “How then are the nations around the world going to learn the Commandments written in the Torah by taking hold of kânâph/tzitzit of a Jewish man who lacks the blue thread?” The answer to that question should be obvious. Do you want to listen to someone who does not set the correct example of what is clearly written in the Bible?

What we really need to realize here is that the Jewish man referred to in the book of Zechariah is none other than Yeshua the Messiah and not an Orthodox Rabbinic Jew. After all, Yeshua is a Jew from the tribe of Judah. The “ten men from all languages of the nations” represent the Ten Tribes of the House of Israel who are scattered to the four corners (kânâph) of the Earth.

In the book of Matthew, Yeshua specifically stated:

“And He answering, said, “I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Yisra’ĕl.” ” ​(Matthew 15:24)

He also commanded His disciples saying:

5 Yeshua sent these twelve out, having commanded them, saying, “Do not go into the way of the gentiles, and do not enter a city of the Shomeronites (Samaritans)6 but rather go to the lost sheep of the house of Yisra’ĕl.” ” ​(Matthew 10:5-6)

We learn in the book of John that Yeshua came as a Shepherd to gather His lost sheep and He also trained His disciples to be shepherds to help gather those sheep as He came to do. Those lost sheep were not of the same fold as the house of Judah.

14 I am the good shepherd (See Ezekiel 34:11-12; Hebrews 13:20; 1 Peter 2:25 and 5:4). And I know Mine, and Mine know Me, 15 even as the Father knows Me, and I know the Father. And I lay down My life for the sheep (lost sheep of the House of Israel and the House of Judah). 16 “And other sheep (lost sheep of the House of Israel) I have which are not of this fold (the House of Judah) – I have to bring them (lost sheep of the House of Israel) as well, and they shall hear My voice, and there shall be one flock (the House of Judah and the House of Israel), one shepherd (See Ezekiel 34:23 and 37:24).” ” ​(John 10:14-16)

Yeshua came as the Son of David to fulfill the prophecy written about in the book of Ezekiel concerning the Shepherd.

while Dawiḏ (David) My servant is sovereign over them. And they shall all have one shepherd and walk in My right-rulings and guard My laws, and shall do them.” ​(Ezekiel 37:24)

Did you notice the purpose of this Shepherd was to “guide” the sheep so they can “walk in My right-rulings (judgments) and guard (keep/do/obey) My laws (statutes), and shall do them?” Sad to say, this is something that is often missed in Christianity because most are taught that Jesus “fulfilled” the Law and thus by His doing so, He abolished the Law. As a result of this wrong teaching, Christians do not wear Tzitziyot and as a result, they are not reminded of the Commandments which Yeshua came to point people to.

This Christian teaching directly contradicts what Yeshua said:

17 Do not think that I came to destroy the Torah or the Prophets (The Law and the Prophets is a term used for the pre-Messianic Scriptures.) I did not come to destroy but to complete (fulfill). 18 “For truly, I say to you, till the heaven and the earth pass away, one jot or one tittle shall by no means pass from the Torah till all be done (See Luke 16:17).” ”

​(Matthew 5:17-18)

When the light comes on, we come to understand that Yeshua did not abolish the Torah by fulfilling the Torah. With this, we need to start to obey and by being obedient, we are looking to the Great Shepherd to teach us how to obey His Absolute Written Word. This is why Yeshua said “Follow Me.” In other words, what He is saying would show us how to walk with Elohim. Yeshua was obedient to what is written in the Torah. He was and still is our example on doing what is written in the Scriptures. We are familiar with the saying “Do what Jesus did.” He obeyed the Absolute Written Word of Almighty YHWH His Father. So, do as He did. Walk in His footsteps if you love Him.

There is another Scripture that is overlooked that is connected to Matthew 5:17-18. Let’s see what it says:

Whoever, then, breaks one of the least of these commands (the Commandments given in the Torah), and teaches men so, shall be called least in the reign (Kingdom) of the heavens; but whoever does (obeys the Commandments written in the Torah) and teaches them, he shall be called great in the reign (Kingdom) of the heavens.” ​(Matthew 5:19)

In other words, all who do not obey the Commandments written in the Torah and also teach others not to obey those Commandments will be called “least” in the Kingdom of Heaven. All who do obey the Commandments written in the Torah will be called “great” in the Kingdom of Heaven. Will you be called “least” or “great” in His Kingdom when He returns?

Let’s put our thinking caps on for a moment. What Bible was Yeshua using as well as His disciples when He was here? The “only” Bible that existed at the time He was here was the Hebrew Scriptures, the Tanakh, known as the Old Testament. The Messianic Scriptures (New Testament) text did not exist at the time He was here. It came about many years after He ascended into heaven. While Yeshua was here on earth, He taught the Commandments as well as He wore the Tzitziyot and surely His Tzitziyot had a blue thread because He kept His Father’s Written Word — the Torah. We know from various Scriptures that people would grasp His tzitzit for healing.

And see, a woman who had a flow of blood for twelve years came from behind and touched the tzitzit of His garment.” ​(Matthew 9:20)

​“35 And when the men of that place recognised Him, they sent out into all that surrounding country, and brought to Him all who were sick, 36 and begged Him to let them only touch the tzitzit of His garment. And as many as touched it were completely healed.

​(Matthew 14:35-36)

​“And wherever He went, into villages, or cities, or the country, they were laying the sick in the market-places, and begged Him to let them touch if only the tzitzit of His garment. And as many as touched Him were healed.” ​(Mark 6:56)

As we can see from the above Scriptures this was a frequent and regular occurrence where ever He traveled to. People would touch His kânâph, His tzitzit for healing. The people knew to do this because of what is written in the book of Malachi.

But to you who fear My Name the Sun of Righteousness shall arise with healing in His wings (kânâph/tzitzit). And you shall go out and leap for joy like calves from the stall.” ​(Malachi 4:2)

Yeshua came with healing in His kânâph, His tzitzit. This was a clear “sign” and a confirmation that He was indeed the Messiah, the Anointed One.

It is sad when some people begin to observe the Commandments written in the Torah that they look to Judaism for instructions and guidance because they “assume” that the Jews are the ones who are obeying the Commandments that are written in the Torah. Many mistakenly interpret Zechariah 8:23 to support such a course of action. We have already noted where most Orthodox Rabbinic Jews do not properly obey the Commandment concerning the tzitzit. They do not use the blue thread in their Tzitziyot. This is the tip of the iceberg. It is critical to understand here that the religion of Judaism derives from the Pharisaic sect and the Pharisees were not obeying what is written in the Torah when Yeshua was here then and up until today.

What did Yeshua say about these Pharisees when He was here?

So you (Pharisees) too outwardly indeed appear righteous to men, but inside you (Pharisees) are filled with hypocrisy and lawlessness.” ​(Matthew 23:28)

There is another very important Scripture that connects to Matthew 23:28. Let’s see what it says:

For I (Yeshua) say to you, that unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees (See Matthew 15:3-9; Mark 7:7-13; John 7:19; Acts 7:53; Romans 2:23-27, and Galatians 6:13.), you shall by no means enter into the reign (Kingdom) of the heavens.” ​(Matthew 5:20)

This is why Yeshua described the Pharisees as being “lawless” (Matthew 23:28). They were following their own man-made traditions handed down to them which led to their transgression of the Commandments (Matthew 15:3) because they were adding to and taking away from YHWH’s Commandments talked about in the book of Deuteronomy, Proverbs and the book of Revelation. Yeshua’s point here is that the Pharisees are not getting into the Kingdom. Their form of righteousness practiced through their traditions and man-made laws was not sufficient to get them into the Kingdom.

Do not add to the Word which I (YHWH) command you, and do not take away from it, so as to guard the commands of YHWH your Elohim which I am commanding you.” ​(Deuteronomy 4:2)

​“All the words I (YHWH) am commanding you, guard (keep/do/obey) to do it – do not add to it nor take away from it.” ​(Deuteronomy 12:32)

​“Do not add to His Words, Lest He reprove you, and you be found a liar.” ​(Proverbs 30:6)

​“18 For I witness to everyone hearing the words of the prophecy of this book: If anyone adds to them, Elohim shall add to him the plagues that are written in this book, 19 and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, Elohim shall take away his part from the Book of Life, and out of the set-apart city, which are written in this Book.

​(Revelation 22:18-19)

It is important to recognize that the Pharisees “thought” that they had the power to “bind and loose” things that were written in the Scriptures. To this day, it is seen as “their” power to interpret what is written in the Torah. Through the traditions of Judaism different rules and regulations were developed over the centuries. As a result of this process, they decided what was acceptable and what was not acceptable to do.

 What did Yeshua say about the doctrine of the Pharisees and Sadducees in the book of Matthew?

11 How is it that you do not understand that I did not speak to you concerning bread, but to beware of the leaven (false teachings) of the Pharisees and Sadducees12 Then they understood that He did not say to beware of the leaven of bread, but of the teaching of the Pharisees and the Sadducees.” ​(Matthew 16:11-12)

Yeshua taught what His Father gave Him which is written in the Tanakh (Old Testament). After Yeshua warned His disciples about the false doctrines of the Pharisees and Sadducees, He went on to confirm that He was indeed the Messiah and He stated:

And I (Yeshua) shall give you the keys of the reign (Kingdom) of the heavens, and whatever you (Yeshua’s followers) bind on earth shall be having been bound in the heavens, and whatever you loosen on earth shall be having been loosened in the heavens.” ​(Matthew 16:19)

We see in the above Scripture where Yeshua gave His disciples the power to “bind” and “loosen” things on earth. What they bind and loosen on earth would be likewise in heaven. Binding and loosening is a Hebrew idiom for exercising authority to prohibit and to permit things to be done and not done.

 Yeshua taught His followers what was written in the Torah and He gave them the keys of the Kingdom. He gave them the power to “bind” and to “loose” that which is written in the Torah. In other words, the followers of Yeshua were given the ability to interpret Torah. The ability to “bind” and “loosen” does not belong to the Pharisees. Yeshua gave this authority to His followers. This is why He sent the Set-Apart (Holy) Spirit. We know this from what is written in the book of John.

But the Helper, the Set-apart (Holy) Spirit, whom the Father shall send in My Name, He shall teach you all, and remind you of all that I said to you.” ​(John 14:26)

​“But when He comes, the Spirit of the Truth, He shall guide you into all the truth. For He shall not speak from Himself, but whatever He hears He shall speak, and He shall announce to you what is to come.” ​(John 16:13)

We see here that if we permit the Set-Apart (Holy) Spirit to guide us into His Truths, He will teach us how to obey the Commandments Yeshua instructed His followers to do. True believers in Yeshua are not to look to the Pharisees and their man-made religion of Judaism for instructions and guidance on what is written in the Bible. Yeshua did not give them, Rabbinic Judaism, His authority but rather He gave that authority to every true believer in Yeshua who is bought and paid for by Yeshua’s shed blood.

With this understanding, we can now correctly understand the passage written in Zechariah 8:23 to mean . . . In those days the remnant of the house of Yisrael who are scattered among the nations shall grasp the tzitzit of Yeshua and they will follow Him as He teaches them how to walk with Elohim.

This teaching is presented to clarity “who” has been given the authority and who does not have the authority to interpret what is written in the Scriptures. Rabbinic Judaism does not nor did they ever have the authority to interpret the Scriptures.

Those who choose to grab ahold of the tzitzit of a Rabbinic Jew are placing themselves under the authority of Rabbinic Judaism and the false teachings and man-made traditions of the Pharisees. The true believer in Yeshua who looks to Rabbinic Judaism for guidance and understanding of the Scriptures is thus denying the power and authority that He gave them. Unless the true believer repents, He will turn them over to believe the false teachings of Rabbinic Judaism.

Do not fall for nor come under the false authority of Rabbinic Judaism.

Eddie Rogers, Minister, D.D.
I am One Crying in The Wilderness!

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