Wednesday, 18 October 2017

M Michele's Musings

The Hem

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“Press through Life to Jesus”

                                         “You will be made whole…”

One of my favorite stories in the New Testament is found in three of the Gospels, the story of the woman with the issue of blood. Matthew 9:20-21 reads, And, behold, a woman, which was diseased with an issue of blood twelve years, came behind him, and touched the hem of his garment:   For she said within herself, If I may but touch his garment, I shall be whole.”  

Can you imagine the faith this woman had? She had faced possible death to reach Jesus as it was against the Law for a woman to come into town when she had an issue of blood. If the authorities had discovered her issue, she could have been stoned. Then the woman had to press through the crowd that was following Jesus just to reach or touch Him. Because of her condition she was probably in a weakened state. She had to fight against all odds to reach Him. And continually she had thoughts in her heart “If I just touch the hem of His garment, I shall be whole.” Not an ounce of doubt, she was confident that to be healed she did not even need to touch Him personally, just the hem of His garment. Amazing. I absolutely love this story. She was totally determined and she KNEW in her heart that Jesus was her answer. She was willing to press through all obstacles, even at the cost of her life, to reach the goal and touch the hem of Jesus’ garment. Mark 5:27 tells us, When she had heard of Jesus, came in the press behind, and touched his garment.She had spent everything she had to be healed but nothing worked until she heard of Jesus. The woman was completely healed when she touched His garment, Luke 8:44 reads, came behind him, and touched the border of his garment: and immediately her issue of blood stanched.

This story is amazing to me. There are such valuable lessons in this story that will help us in life. Press through life to Jesus. Press through troubles to Jesus. Press through heartache to Jesus. Press through trials to Jesus. Press through depression to Jesus. Press, press, press. Never stop pressing through to Him because He is your answer. Never give up. He is the only way to wholeness. He is your only hope in this life. He is your only hope in troubles. He is your only hope in heartache. He is your only hope in trials. He is your only hope with depression. He is your hope and He will make you whole. Just as Jesus touched the woman and she was made whole, when He touches your life you will begin to become whole. It is a constant walk and requires that you reach for Him daily. But, He will make you whole because that is what God desires to do in your life through His beloved Son, Jesus Christ.

It is interesting to me that women with an issue of blood were required to stay outside the border of the camp. These women were shut off from society because of their condition. This particular woman was ostracized for 12 years, yet she was willing to go inside the borders where she was not allowed. She was determined in her heart to touch the border of Jesus’ garment because she believed that Jesus could heal her. The woman touched the hem of His garment. The Bible says virtue went forth from Him and the woman was healed. It was her faith that made her whole. The woman was welcomed back into society because she had been made whole and no longer had the issue of blood. She was welcomed back into the borders of the camp because of the touch of Jesus.   Isn’t this a perfect picture of how salvation works in our lives? Because of sin we are separated from God; Outside the life of God. Outside the will of God; Outside the love of God. We are not allowed in the “border” of a relationship with God because He is righteous and we are not washed from our sin apart from the blood of Jesus. Then we hear of Jesus. We put our faith and trust in Him and Jesus brings us into a loving relationship with the Father. We are made His children. We are in His care. We are restored and we are placed within the “border” of His love and His keeping power. We can come boldly to the throne of grace because of Jesus’ sacrifice for us.  

           

There are other references in the New Testament to touching the hem or the border of His garment: Matthew 14:36 tells us “And besought him that they might only touch the hem of his garment: and as many as touched were made perfectly whole.And Mark 6:56 “And whithersoever he entered, into villages, or cities, or country, they laid the sick in the streets, and besought him that they might touch if it were but the border of his garment: and as many as touched him were made whole.   Many seeking only to touch the hem of his garment and they were made whole. I ask my self why the hem, why the border of His garment? What is significant about this? The hem or the border was significant in Jewish dress. In Numbers 15:38-41 the word says, 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 ribband of blue: And 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: That ye may remember, and do all my commandments, and be holy unto your God. I am the LORD your God, which brought you out of the land of Egypt, to be your God: I am the LORD your God.   The children of Israel were bid to make fringes in the borders of their garments throughout their generations with a ribband of blue. Blue represents truth.

The Bible says that Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. These borders/hems with the fringes were there to remind the Jewish people of the commandments of the Lord and to keep them. Jesus is the Word. It is the Word that can and will make us whole if we obey and apply the Word to our lives. Dean E. Wheelock of Hebrew Roots writes of the incident of the women touching the hem of Jesus’ garment: “The tallit has fringes or tzit-tzit on it’s corners. Our Messiah, Yeshua wore these same fringes or tzit-tzit on His garments. That is what the woman with the issue of blood touched when she became healed. The tzit-tzit are tied in such a way that they represent the 613 commandment that are found in the Torah. When she touched Yeshua’s tzit-tzit she touched His outward, physical symbol of righteousness and, because she believed it would heal her, it did. This was an outward act of an inner faith. (Faith without works is dead, being alone. James 2:17)”  

Other scriptures regarding borders (not necessarily for clothing) reflecting God’s care and mercy and what He does and will do in our lives are throughout the Word of God: “And he brought them to the border of his sanctuary, even to this mountain, which his right hand had purchased. Psalms 78:54   He maketh peace in thy borders, and filleth thee with the finest of the wheat. Psalms 147:14   The LORD will destroy the house of the proud: but he will establish the border of the widow. Proverbs 15:25   And I will make thy windows of agates, and thy gates of carbuncles, and all thy borders of pleasant stones. Isaiah 54:12   Violence shall no more be heard in thy land, wasting nor destruction within thy borders; but thou shalt call thy walls Salvation, and thy gates Praise. Isaiah 60:18   “And there is hope in thine end, saith the LORD, that thy children shall come again to their own border. Jeremiah 31:17   Moreover, when ye shall divide by lot the land for inheritance, ye shall offer an oblation unto the LORD, an holy portion of the land: the length shall be the length of five and twenty thousand reeds, and the breadth shall be ten thousand. This shall be holy in all the borders thereof round about.Ezekiel 45:1   God truly surrounds, encircles, encompasses, envelops us (makes a border around us) with his love and care. He brings us to His sanctuary through Christ. He makes peace within our hearts. He blesses us with his goodness. He gives us His salvation. He gives us hope. He makes us beautiful in Him as we follow and worship Him.

Remember He loves you with an everlasting love. He will never leave you nor forsake you. He will keep you in the “border” of His care and love. He is your redeemer and the lover of your soul. He is your Lord and Master. He is the Hope of your Salvation. He is the Wonderful Saving Healing Savior. Trust Him always. He keeps what you have entrusted to Him.   Press, press, press into Him daily. Don’t ever quit pressing and don’t ever let go. You are His and He loves you.

Love in Christ, Michele

Michele LeDoux Abshire ~ November 2004

 

Columnist: Michele's Musings

Picture Michele Abshire is a housewife, mother, grandmother, and full time legal assistant. She has been published in Lake Charles, Louisiana publications, Christian Star Newspaper and Gumbeaux Magazine.  

Michele began writing notes of encouragement to people God put on her heart which led her in the direction of writing short encouraging stories, letters, essays and analogies.  This quickly became a ministry for her.  

Michele's vision is to reach people with encouraging messages that will lift their heart and bring joy for sorrow and hope for discouragement. Michele enjoys your feedback so leave a comment in the form at the bottom of the page or email her at  

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