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Why do we wear the Tzitzit?

Shalom! May YHWH be praised!

            I will be using the King James plus the Strong’s number version in much of this study to aid the reader in identifying certain Hebrew and Greek words, as well as their definitions. I have taken the liberty of restoring the correct Names and tittles, (YHWH, Yahushua, Elohim, etc.) to the KJV texts, as well as underlined and emboldened for emphasis. Otherwise the texts should read exactly as they appear in the KJV. Where the KJV is not used I will be using the ISRV “The Scriptures”.

In this study we will examine what the Scripture has to say concerning the wearing of tzitziyot (plural of tzitzit). Is it commanded, what is their purpose, how does one make them, and more? I hope that you find this study helpful. Another aspect of this study is to examine and debunk some of the objections to wearing tzitziyot that people often times offer. Our main source of evidence should be and will be the Scripture. However as we shall see, humanism and not Scripture is usually the road taken by objectors to substantiate their position on this matter. They are usually backed up with fallacious arguments designed to persuade or appease rather than getting to the truth.  As we explore some of these objections, I will attempt to expose the flaws in their logic by appealing to your ability to discern. “Prove all things, hold fast to that which is good.” Often times the way in which I do this is might seem a little sarcastic, but I hope that it doesn’t come across as caustic or mean spirited. That is not my intention at all, (much of it is done “tongue in cheek”). By applying their logic to a couple of other reasonable situations we can see if that logic is sound or does it demonstrate absurdity. I stress, reasonable situations; you see, we can twist anything and risk becoming absurd ourselves. We want to be fair here. The idea here is to give the reader a little “food for thought” to consider, should you have to answer these objections yourself. This study is actually written in Yahushua’s love, for my brothers and sisters out there who are diligently and desirously searching for the knowledge of YHWH’s perfect will for them in their lives, and the power to carry it out! HalleluYah! My intention is to inform the reader and hopefully, this will help clear up the tzitzit matter for you. With that being said, off to the study!

Why do we wear the tzitzit?

Num 15:37  And the YHWH3068 spoke559 unto413 Moses,4872 saying,559Num 15:38  Speak1696 unto413 the children1121 of Israel,3478 and bid559, 413 them that they make6213 them fringes6734 in5921 the borders3671 of their garments899 throughout their generations,1755 and that they put5414 upon5921 the fringe6734 of the borders3671 a ribbon6616 of blue:8504 Num 15:39  And it shall be1961 unto you for a fringe,6734 that ye may look upon7200 it, and remember2142 (853) all3605 the commandments4687 of YHWH,3068 and do6213 them; and that ye seek8446 not3808 after310 your own heart3824 and your own eyes,5869 after310 which834 ye859 use to go a whoring:2181 Num 15:40  That4616 ye may remember,2142 and do6213 (853) all3605 my commandments,4687 and be1961 holy6918 unto your Elohim.430 Num 15:41  I589 am YHWH3068 your Elohim,430 which834 brought you out3318, (853) of the land4480, 776 of Egypt,4714 to be1961 your Elohim:430 I589 am YHWH3068 your Elohim.430

So we see here in verse 38 that YHWH told Moses to tell the children of Yisra’el to make fringes6734 in the borders3671 of their garments throughout their generations, and that they put upon the fringe of the borders a ribbon of blue:

But why?

Reading on we see,

Num 15:39  And it shall be to you for a fringe, that you may look upon it and remember all the commands of YHWH, and do them; and so that you do not seek after your own heart and your own eyes, after which you prostitute yourself,Num 15:40 that you may remember and do all My commands, and be set apart to your Elohim.

Here are some important words of point to consider in these verses, “look upon, remember, all, of YHWH, do them, do not seek own heart, own eyes, prostitute self, be set apart to your Elohim”, and two times in these two verses,  “remember all the commands of YHWH/ My commands”.

But why do I need a reminder?

He just told you! “so that you do not seek after your own heart and your own eyes, after which you prostitute yourself,”This is YHWH speaking, not me!

Is this fringe or tassel anywhere else in Scripture?

Deu 22:12  Thou shalt make6213 thee fringes1434 upon5921 the four702 quarters3671 of thy vesture,3682 wherewith834 thou coverest3680 thyself.Zec 8:23  Thus3541 saith559 YHWH3068 of hosts;6635 In those1992 days3117 it shall come to pass, that834 ten6235 men376 shall take hold2388 out of all4480, 3605 languages3956 of the nations,1471 even shall take hold2388 of the skirt3671 of him376 that is a Jew,3064 saying,559 We will go1980 with5973 you: for3588 we have heard8085 that Elohim430 is with5973 you.

What are these fringes # 6734?

According to Strong’s,

tsee-tseeth'

Feminine of H6731; a floral or wing like projection, that is, a fore lock of hair, a tassel: - fringe, lock.

According to Brown-Driver-Briggs’

tsi^ytsith

BDB Definition:

1) fringe, tassel, lock

Part of Speech: noun feminine

A Related Word by BDB/Strong’s Number: from H6731

What is this border #3671


According to Strong’s,

kaw-nawf'

From H3670; an edge or extremity; specifically (of a bird or army) a wing, (of a garment or bed clothing) a flap, (of the earth) a quarter, (of a building) a pinnacle: -  + bird, border, corner, end, feather [-ed], X flying, + (one an-) other, overspreading, X quarters, skirt, X sort, uttermost part, wing ([-ed]).

According to Brown-Driver-Briggs

ka^na^ph

BDB Definition:

1) wing, extremity, edge, winged, border, corner, shirt

1a) wing

1b) extremity

1b1) skirt, corner (of garment)

Part of Speech: noun feminine

A Related Word by BDB/Strong’s Number: from H3670

Are women supposed to wear them?

Well, to tell you the truth most translations render it similar to the way that the King James does here, Num 15:38 Speak unto the “children of Israel”, and bid them that they make them fringes in the borders of their garments throughout their generations, and that they put upon the fringe of the borders a ribbon of blue: Some translations say, “people of Israel” or “the Israelites” but not the “sons of Israel”. Then, there are some translations that do render it “sons of Israel” but not most. The Hebrew word in question here is Strong’s number H1121 (pronounced “bane” and usually spelled “ben”). It has a long list of definitions of which “son” and “children” are only two. You can study it out for yourself; but one has to ask, were the Ten Commandments only for the men or all of the children of Israel? Was Passover only for the men or was it for all of the children of Israel? Were the Prophets only for the sons or were they for all of the children of Israel? Are the men the only ones who need a reminder to keep all that YHWH has commanded? I don’t think so. The women need it just as much as the men. The Torah applies to the women just as much as it does to the men. I can find no real evidence that this is a “man thing”. This is a, “YHWH thing” and I believe that the women are expected to wear them just as much as the men. If someone has evidence to the contrary we would love to see it. We are about truth, not our own opinions.

What about in the “New Testament”?

Matt 9:20  And,2532 behold,2400 a woman,1135 which was diseased with an issue of blood131 twelve1427 years,2094 came4334 behind3693 him, and touched680 the3588 hem2899 of his846 garment:2440 Mat 9:21  For1063 she said3004 within1722 herself,1438 If1437 I may but3440 touch680 his846 garment,2440 I shall be whole.4982 Matt 9:22  But1161 Yahuahua2424 turned him about,1994 and2532 when he saw1492 her,846 he said,2036 Daughter,2364 be of good comfort;2293 thy4675 faith4102 hath made thee whole.4982, 4571 And2532 the3588 woman1135 was made whole4982 from575 that1565 hour.5610 Luk 8:43  And2532 a woman1135 having5607 an(1722) issue4511 of blood129 twelve1427 years,2094 which3748 had spent4321 all3650 her living979 upon1519 physicians,2395 neither3756 could2480 be healed2323 of5259 any,3762 Luk 8:44  Came4334 behind3693 him, and touched680 the3588 border2899 of his846 garment:2440 and2532 immediately3916 her846 issue4511 of blood129 staunched.2476 Luk 8:45  And2532 Yahuahua2424 said,2036 Who5101 touched680 me?3450 When1161 all3956 denied,720 Peter4074 and2532 they3588 that were with3326 him846 said,2036 Master,1988 the3588 multitude3793 throng4912 thee4571 and2532 press598 thee, and2532 sayest3004 thou, Who5101 touched680 me?3450 Luk 8:46  And1161 Yahuahua2424 said,2036 Somebody5100 hath touched680 me:3450 for1063 I1473 perceive1097 that virtue1411 is gone1831 out of575 me.1700 Luk 8:47  And1161 when the3588 woman1135 saw1492 that3754 she was not3756 hid,2990 she came2064 trembling,5141 and2532 falling down before4363 him,846 she declared518 unto him836 before1799 all3956 the3588 people2992 for1223 what3739 cause156 she had touched680 him,846 and2532 how5613 she was healed2390 immediately.3916 Luk 8:48  And1161 he3588 said2036 unto her,846 Daughter,2364 be of good comfort:2293 thy4675 faith4102 hath made thee whole;4982, 4571 go4198 in1519 peace.1515

“Your faith has made you whole”… Faith in what?

Well, did she not touch that thing which was Yahushua’s own personal reminder of YHWH’s standard of righteousness, His commands? She wanted to touch Yahushua’s reminder. His life and obedience to YHWH’s laws demonstrated His own righteousness!

Matt 14:34  And2532 when they were gone over,1276 they came2064 into1519 the3588 land1093 of Gennesaret.1082 Matt 14:35  And2532 when the3588 men435 of that1565 place5117 had knowledge1921 of him,846 they sent out649 into1519 all3650 that1565 country round about,4066 and2532 brought4374 unto him846 all3956 that were diseased;2192, 2560 Matt 14:36  And2532 besought3870 him846 that2443 they might only3440 touch680 the3588 hem2899 of his846 garment:2440 and2532 as many as3745 touched680 were made perfectly whole.1295, 8

What is this hem/border #G2899?

According to Strong’s,

kraspedon

kras'-ped-on

Of uncertain derivation; a margin, that is, (specifically) a fringe or tassel: -  border, hem.

WWJD?

We see this all the time these days on wristbands, bookmarks, tee shirts, car tags, etc. (of course we know it should be WWYD, What Would Yahushua Do?). Are we not to follow His example? If we want to know WWYD in order to follow His example then we need to ask WDYD, (What Did Yahushua Do?) and do likewise.

Did Yahushua wear the tzitzit?

Yep! He sure did.

Why?

Because it is a command from Elohim!

I know a minister that says, “You can put them on if you think that you need a reminder”.


Let us get something clear here. YHWH does not say, “You can put them on If you think that you need a reminder”, that is a man using humanism to substantiate his reluctance to obey. YHWH said to wear them because YHWH thinks that we need a reminder. Let’s use that same line of logic on some other commands shall we? Would you say to someone, “you can observe the Sabbath if you think that you need a day of rest to set apart to YHWH”? How about this one; “You can love your neighbor as yourself if you think that you need to love them as yourself”. Do you see where this line of thinking leads? Lawlessness. It is really a pretty arrogant excuse not to obey YHWH when you stop and think about it, isn’t it? YHWH is big on reminders, even for Himself!


Gen 9:13  "I shall set My rainbow in the cloud, and it shall be for the sign of the covenant between Me and the earth.

Gen 9:14  "And it shall be, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the rainbow shall be seen in the cloud,

Gen 9:15  and I shall remember My covenant which is between Me and you and every living creature of all flesh, and never again let the waters become a flood to destroy all flesh.

Gen 9:16  "And the rainbow shall be in the cloud, and I shall see it, to remember the everlasting covenant between Elohim and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth."

Gen 9:17  And Elohim said to Noah, "This is the sign of the covenant which I have established between Me and all flesh that is on the earth."

Lev 26:41  and that I also have walked contrary to them and have brought them into the land of their enemies - if their uncircumcised heart is then humbled, and they accept the punishment of their crookedness,

Lev 26:42  then I shall remember My covenant with Ya’aqob, and also My covenant with Yitshaq, and also remember My covenant with Abraham, and remember the land.

I know people who say, they don’t have to wear the tzitzit because Yahushua is their tzitzit!

How absurd! Ask them to show where the Scripture says anything at all about Yahushua being a tzitzit! I think that they will be hard pressed to show you the verse where it says that.  Also ask them how is anyone supposed to look upon their tzitzit and remember all that YHWH has commanded if Yahushua is his tzitzit. This is just another flimsy excuse for being disobedient to YHWH’s command based on humanistic reasoning. Lets apply it to a few other commands since we’re picking and choosing, shall we? I have actually heard this next one as well. Yahushua is my Sabbath so I don’t have to keep the seventh day Sabbath, I can keep Sunday now. Again, show me where it says in the Scripture that Yahushua is your Sabbath. But let’s keep going okay? How about, Yahushua is my fidelity, so I don’t have to be faithful to my spouse! Yahushua is my honesty, so I can bear false witness if I want! Yahushua is my contentment, so I can covet everything that belongs to my neighbor, including his wife! Yahushua is my respect for the property of others, so I can steal your belongings if I want! Yahushua is my clean meats, so I can eat a pig a dog a buzzard a rat! How silly! Using a line of reasoning like that a person could make Yahushua anything that they wanted and commit any and every sin that is an abomination to Elohim even murder! Remember, if it is not in the Scripture its unscriptural…duh! I am always amazed at the people who say, “I don’t have to obey the law because I have a circumcised heart” yet they wander constantly after the ways of the uncircumcised! If your life does not display a circumcised lifestyle it’s pretty unlikely that you truly have a circumcised heart. You can’t have it both ways. If you have a circumcised heart you will desire to do the things of the circumcised, it’s that simple! Yahushua is not a liar! When He says heaven and earth will pass away before one jot or title be struck from the law, that’s what He means. When you hear people make statements like “Yahushua is my tzitzit” or “that’s been done away with” it is usually people twisting the words of Paul (Sha’ul). But remember what Peter (Kepha) said about this.

2Pe 3:14  So then, beloved ones, looking forward to this, do your utmost to be found by Him in peace, spotless and blameless,

2Pe 3:15  and reckon the patience of our Master as deliverance, as also our beloved brother Sha’ul (Paul) wrote to you, according to the wisdom given to him,

2Pe 3:16  as also in all his letters, speaking in them concerning these matters, in which some are hard to understand, which those who are untaught and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do also the other Scriptures.

2Pe 3:17  You, then, beloved ones, being forewarned, watch, lest you also fall from your own steadfastness, being led away with the delusion of the lawless,


The command to wear the tzitzit is sort of a “catch 22”. The fact that a person decides to take it off is evidence that he needs to put it on. You see, at the point in which he takes it off he has just stopped keeping all that YHWH has commanded and demonstrates the fact that he needs a reminder. What kind of reminder? Oh I don’t know…um…let’s see…what kind of reminder should he use…hmmm…maybe he could use something like a…like a…like a…hmm… I got it!  He could wear a tzitzit! Why? It’s perfect!

It’s already YHWH approved!

I have heard some people say that they don’t have to wear them because “I have the law written on my heart”.

 Ask yourself this; did Yahushua have the Law written on His heart? I would say yes He did! Did Yahushua wear the tzi-tzit as well?  He sure did! Are we more righteous than Yahushua? See above paragraph about the command to wear the tzi-tzit is a catch 22.


Well isn’t this a statute or a precept or a judgment and not actually a law?


The following three passages are from the MKJV because the ISRV uses the words, ” laws” and “right-rulings” instead of the words, “statutes and judgements”.

Lev 26:14  But if you will not listen to Me, and will not do all these commandments,

Lev 26:15 and if you shall despise My statutes, or if your soul hates My judgments, so that you will not do all My commandments, so that you break My covenant;

Lev 26:16  I will also do this to you: I will even appoint terror over you, consumption, and burning fever, consuming the eyes and causing sorrow of heart. And you shall sow your seed in vain, for your enemies shall eat it.

Lev 26:17  And I will set My face against you, and you shall be slain before your enemies. They that hate you shall reign over you. And you shall flee when none pursues you.

Lev 26:18  And if you will not yet listen to Me for all this, then I will punish you seven times more for your sins.

Mal 4:4  Remember the Law of Moses My servant, which I commanded to him in Horeb for all Israel, the statutes and judgments.

Eze 18:5  But a man that is just and does what is just and right,

Eze 18:6  and has not eaten on the mountains, nor has lifted up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, nor has defiled his neighbor's wife, nor has come near a menstruating woman,

Eze 18:7  and has not ill-treated any man, but has given the debtor's pledge back to him, has robbed none by violence, has given his bread to the hungry and has covered the naked with a garment;

Eze 18:8  he has not given out on usury, nor has taken any increase, he has withdrawn his hand from iniquity, has done judgment between man and man,

Eze 18:9  has walked in My statutes, and has kept My judgments to deal truly, he is righteous, he shall surely live, says Yah YHWH.


Though men will try, YHWH does not make a distinction; regardless of the category they are still commands.

But won’t this make me look funny?

Are we asking the wrong question here? I mean, how many times in the Scripture can we find where YHWH has asked His people to fit in and try to be just like everybody else. The tzitzit is not a fashion statement. I take that back; it does make the statement that we are to remember to walk in a righteous fashion, so I guess it is a righteous fashion statement. I stand corrected! One cannot base their level of obedience on how they will be viewed by the world. Regardless of the issue, we need to stand with YHWH and Yahushua and not worry so much about what the world thinks.

Luk 12:9 "But he that has denied Me before men shall be denied before the messengers of Elohim.

Jam 4:4  Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with Elohim? Whoever therefore intends to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of Elohim.


Doesn’t it bring attention to me?

It can if that’s where your heart is; but what it should be bringing is attention to the commands of YHWH! Remember? That’s what it is for. Remember? So it will be a reminder. Remember? To keep all that YHWH has commanded. Remember? So that you do not seek after your own heart and your own eyes, after which you prostitute yourself. Remember? So just in case you should forget, put them on! Remember! YHWH says that we need a reminder. I believe YHWH knows best. He made us and He knows what makes us work best! HalleluYah!

Psa 147:5  Great is our Master and mighty in power, There is no limit to His understanding.

I actually know and know of people who will use Matthew 6:1-2 as an excuse to either wear the tzitzit under their clothes, or not wear them at all for fear of drawing attention to themselves.

Mat 6:1 "Beware of doing your kind deeds before men, in order to be seen by them. Otherwise you have no reward from your Father in the heavens.

Mat 6:2  "Thus, when you do a kind deed, do not sound a trumpet before you as the hypocrites do, in the congregations and in the streets, to be praised by men. Truly, I say to you, they have their reward.

This Scripture is taken very much out of context in order to support their pretext for disobedience. Take note: what Yahushua is warning against here is doing things to draw attention to yourself in order that others will esteem you. He is not talking about being obedient in secret.  If you are going to use this Scripture to say that you have to hide (or not wear at all) YHWH’s reminder the tzitzit, lest you risk someone seeing you, then neither can you congregate on Shabbat! Someone might see you doing a righteous act! You can’t be seen carrying the Scriptures! Someone might see you doing a righteous act! You can’t open the door for a person with their arms full of groceries or help someone broke down on the side of the road because someone might see you doing a righteous act! This is not what Yahushua was talking about. This particular Scripture was taken from the Sermon on the Mount and as a matter of fact just a few verses before in Matthew 5, Yahushua says,

Mat 5:14  "You are the light of the world. It is impossible for a city to be hidden on a mountain.

Mat 5:15  "Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it shines to all those in the house.

Mat 5:16  "Let your light so shine before men, so that they see your good works and praise your Father who is in the heavens.

What Yahushua is warning about here is the same attitude or state of the heart that he condemns later in Mat 23:5 But they do all their works in order to be seen of men. They make their phylacteries broad and enlarge the borders (or tzitzit) of their garments.

Yahushua does not condemn the wearing of the tzitzit (He wore them Himself!); He condemns making them large in an attempt to get praise from other people under the pretense that a larger tzitzit translates into greater attention to the Torah by the wearer and thus means that he is more righteous than the next guy. All the while doing it “in order to be seen of men”.

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