The children of Israel found a man gathering sticks on the Sabbath and came to Moses to see what should be done to him. The Lord said that he must be put to death. They stoned him and he died.
The Lord told the children of Israel to make tassels on the corners of their garments. The were also to put a blue thread in the tassels. The tassels would remind the Israelites of the commandments of God.
While these may seem like harsh and/or random things that God spoke to, they had significance for a few reasons. First, God had commanded to keep the Sabbath day and do no work in it. If we willingly neglect the commandments of God, whether concerning the Sabbath or other things, we tell God that He does not know best. If we live that way, we die spiritually, whether we are stoned to death or not. Also, if we remind ourselves of the commandments of God, even with quaint or cute methods, it will help us to live according to those commandments. God is looking for people who will heed His voice and live within His commandments. Be that man or woman for Him!