In Numbers 15:37-40 we find God giving a very interesting direction to the children of Israel. They’re told to make fringes on the borders of their garments, and to include a blue ribbon attached to the fringe. But why?
God never does or says anything by chance!
The reason is given in vs. 39, 40: “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.”
Ok, so the color blue was supposed to help them remember God’s commandments, but why? Do we have any evidence anywhere before this command that would help us answer this question?
Ezekiel 1:26, 10:1 gives us a glimpse into the heavens. In vision, Ezekiel sees the throne of God, with the covering cherubs surrounding His glory. What does Ezekiel tell us the throne is made of? Answer: sapphire stone.
Now, rewind back to Exodus 24:9-12, long before God’s instructions in Numbers 15. Moses, Aaron, Nadab and Abihu, along with the 70 elders of Israel are summoned up onto Mount Sinai to receive the 10 commandments from God. Collectively, they’re shown a brief glimpse into the same heavens as Ezekiel! What do they see under the feet of God? Answer: sapphire stone.
The Lord begins to speak to them in vs. 12, where He tells them “I will give thee tables of stone, and a law, and commandments, which I have written; that thou mayest teach them.” Notice here 2 things: 1. God provides the stone and the writing 2. The Hebrew word used here for stone has the definite article “the” in front of it. So it reads “tables of the stone…” What is the ONLY stone mentioned in the context? That’s right, sapphire stone!
So, armed with context and background, what was blue supposed to represent to Israel? And why was blue the color selected to serve this purpose? You guessed it!
- God’s throne is made of blue sapphire stone
- God made the 10 commandments from His very throne
- He told them to wear blue to remind them of His law and authority
In “Blue Commandments? Part 2”, we’ll look at the prophetic significance of the color blue.