Everything about experiencing the mystery of the prayer shawl points to Yeshua, the Teacher. The tallit is all about Him.
It represents the Word of God, and He is the Living Word. It is most likely that Yeshua always wore a tallit because doing so was required by the Torah and He obeyed the Law of Moses. But there was something special about the Teacher's tallit. In the Word of God, we see instances of people reaching out to take hold of the hem of His garment, the tzitzit, so they would be healed. This was a profound, faith-filled act that, as we will see in this chapter, confirmed that Yeshua was indeed the promised Messiah.
The Scriptures tell us: "But for you who fear My name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its wings" (Mal. 4:2).
The sun of righteousness has been interpreted to mean the Messiah, and the Hebrew term for "wings" is kanaph or kanaphecha. Consequently, the verse has been interpreted to read, "When the Messiah arises there will be healing through His kanaph or tzitzit, the corner of His tallit." This is why those who were ill wanted to grab the corner of Yeshua's garment, the tzitzit, which represents the Word of God. They believed that Yeshua was the Messiah and that there was healing in His "wings."
We read in the book of Matthew: "Then a woman, who was ill with a flow of blood for twelve years, came behind Him and touched the hem of His garment. For she said within herself, 'If I may just touch His garment, I shall be healed.' But Jesus turned around, and when He saw her, He said, 'Daughter, be of good comfort. Your faith has made you well.' And the woman was made well instantly" (Matt. 9:20-22).
I recall with fond memories that when I was 10 years old, my parents took me to see the movie Ben Hur at Radio City Music Hall. What stood out to me was that this Messiah had multitudes and multitudes of followers wherever He journeyed, and those He touched were healed. The movie was actually showing me the fulfillment of Yeshua's Word:
"And when the men of that place recognized Him, they sent word to all the surrounding country and brought to Him all who were sick, and begged Him that they might only touch the hem of His garment. And as many as touched it were made perfectly well" (Matt. 14:35-36).
Of course, I had no idea what that passage said because as a young Jewish boy growing up in the United States in post-Holocaust times, I was never taught about Yeshua. I had no idea the garment He was wearing was a tallit katan, a garment that contained the tzitzit or the kanaph, and that there is healing through the power of His Word.
Still today healing comes through the power of the Word. While Adonai Himself is the One who heals—His name is Adonai Rofecha, "the Lord your Healer" (Ex. 15:26)—He does so through the Word of God.
The preceding is an excerpt from Rabbi Charlie Kluge's book, The Tallit (© Charisma House, 2016, all rights reserved).
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