Summary: The Hebrews were required to have tassels on their garments to remind them of God and their commitment to him. Christians have special clothing, too!
A young lawyer was setting himself up in his first private practice. As he sat in his office, which was basically bare except for his desk with a telephone on it and a book case filled with important-looking legal books, he wondered how long it would be before he got his first client.
Then, as luck would have it, he saw a man across the road cross the street and stride towards his front door. Feeling nervous and wanting to make a good impression on the working class man, he quickly picked up the phone receiver and began talking to an imaginary client on the phone. The man, now standing in the office in front of his desk, waited several minutes while he concluded his conversation with this very important client.
Finally after ending the conversation, he looked up at the man, now directly in front of his desk and with an air of superiority said to the man "Can I help you?"
The man looked at the young lawyer and without missing a beat said "I’m from the phone company. I’m here to connect your phone."
We face a dilemma: 16In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. Matthew 5.16
5"And when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites. For they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, that they may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. 6But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you. Matthew 6.5-6
The key is our intentions -- not just appearances
Tallit – Prayer Shawl
Worn by Yeshua – 44She came up behind him and touched the fringe of his garment, and immediately her discharge of blood ceased. Luke 8.44
The little girl -- 41 Taking her by the hand he said to her, "Talitha cumi," which means, "Little girl, I say to you, arise." 42And immediately the girl got up and began walking (for she was twelve years of age), and they were immediately overcome with amazement. Mark 5.41-42
I. A Generational Reminder (15.37-38)
A. A Physical Pedigree is not Enough
1. Easy to rest on the past – Luke 3.7-9
7He said therefore to the crowds that came out to be baptized by him, "You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? 8Bear fruits in keeping with repentance. And do not begin to say to yourselves, 'We have Abraham as our father.' For I tell you, God is able from these stones to raise up children for Abraham. 9Even now the axe is laid to the root of the trees. Every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire."
2. Display of Sabbath-Circumcision-Kashrut
B. Faith in God is Essential
And he believed the LORD, and he counted it to him as righteousness. Genesis 15.6
Place of infant baptism????
C. Power in Passing on Faith
1. Parents to Children
a. Training for God – 4"Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. 5You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. 6And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. 7 You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. 8 You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. 9 You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. Deuteronomy 6.4-9; Ephesians 6.1-4
b. Not an institutional responsibility
2. Outreach Efforts – 2 Timothy 2.1-2
1You then, my child, be strengthened by the grace that is in Christ Jesus, 2and what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.
Making Disciples – Rabbinic approach – the imposition to our time
3. Community Aspects of Faith
Don’t live in a vacuum – Navel reminds us of our attachment to another
Continue an attachment – Americans/OK/Family/Church/etc.
Church – Acts 2.42-47
42And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. 43And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. 44And all who believed were together and had all things in common. 45And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. 46And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, 47praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.