652. Fringes

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According to the Mosaic law every Jew was obliged to wear a fringe or tassel at each of the four corners of the outer garment, one thread of each tassel to be deep blue. These tassels were to be to them a perpetual reminder of the law of God, and of their duty to keep it. See Numbers 15:38-3938Speak 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 ribband of blue: 39And it shall be unto you for a fringe, that ye may look upon it, and remember all the commandments of the Lord, and do them; and that ye seek not after your own heart and your own eyes, after which ye use to go a whoring: (Numbers 15:38‑39); Deuteronomy 22:1212Thou shalt make thee fringes upon the four quarters of thy vesture, wherewith thou coverest thyself. (Deuteronomy 22:12). This was the “hem” which the poor woman touched, supposing there was some peculiar virtue in it. So the people of Gennesaret brought their sick to Christ for a similar purpose. See Mark 6: 56, where the same word in the original, κπισπεὀον is rendered “border.” The Pharisees prided themselves greatly on these tassels, considering them as marks of special sanctity in the wearers, and therefore sought to enlarge their size. See Matthew 23:55But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments, (Matthew 23:5).