Tassels of Remembrance

from Lynda Lindsey

The Lord to Moses: “Speak to the people of Israel, and tell them to make tassels on the corners of their garments throughout their generations, and to put a cord of blue on the tassel of each corner. And it shall be a tassel for you to look at and remember all the commandments of the Lord, to do them, not to follow after your own heart and your own eyes, which you are inclined to whore after. So you shall remember and do all my commandments, and be holy to your God. I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt to be your God: I am the Lord your God.” Numbers 15:38-41

“This is my body, which is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” In the same way also He took the cup, after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.”  I Corinthians 11:24(b)-25

Reminders are visual and auditory prompts that help us be mindful of important things we need to do, to not do, or to remember. We make lists, set timers, and use calendars. To remind the Israelites not to repeat the faithlessness and disobedience of the spies who refused to enter the Promised Land, God instructed His people to make tassels on their garments. These tassels served as a visual prompt to obey everything God said. Just as wedding rings symbolize a couple’s faithfulness and commitment to one another, tassels were symbols of Israel’s commitment and devotion to the Lord. 

The tassels reminded God’s people to not follow their own heart and eyes, but to follow God, for the heart of man is deceitful and inclined to wickedness. To follow the counsel of our heart and eyes is to stubbornly defy God, to debase and defile ourselves, and God, by setting ourselves up as God, replacing Him with whatever we selfishly hold dear. Tassels reminded the Israelites, and the pagan nations around them, that God’s people are to live as distinct, separate, and holy people, people the Lord God had brought out of Egypt.

We need tassels of remembrance, prompts that remind us that God has called us out of our own Egypt of sin; tassels that remind us we are made holy and righteous by Jesus’ blood. Our tassels of remembrance? The celebration of communion. Each time we eat the bread and drink the cup, we remember God’s faithfulness and commitment. We examine ourselves, repent, ask for forgiveness, and recommit ourselves with renewed devotion to our Savior. Remember Jesus; trust and obey Him. Jesus is our all in all; He’s all we need. Remember and celebrate His goodness.