“With the trustworthy You act trustingly and with the crooked You act perversely. For You save the afflicted nation and haughty eyes You bring down low. For it is You Who will light my lamp, HaShem, my Elohim, will illuminate my darkness.” Psalms 18:27-29
As I put this Op together, it is Shabbat, 27 November 2021, the eve before Chanukah 2021 begins. I thought I would put together a very quick Op to discuss the importance of Chanukah, especially in light of now in the day and times we live in.
Before we jump into this, always remember the following eternal characteristics of HaShem:
- HaShem never changes per Num 23:19/Mal 3:6/Hebrews 13:8/James 1:17
- His Word is firmly established per Psalm 119:89
- He reveals the end out of the beginning per Is 46:10
- He does nothing without first revealing it to His prophets per Amos 3:7
- He says there is nothing new under the sun per Ecclesiastes 1:9
- He says His Torah is the ONLY truth there is per Psalms 119:142
- He says His Torah is a tree of life and eternal per Proverbs 3:18-19 and Psalm 119:160
- He says His Torah is perfect and restores the soul per Psalm 19:7
- He says His Torah makes the simple one wise per Psalm 19:7
- He says His Torah Is freedom and liberty per Psalm 119:45 and James 1:25
- He says His Torah is the only good doctrine there is Proverbs 4:2
- He says His Torah will add length of days and years of life and peace per Proverbs 3:2
- He says all of the ways of His Torah are ways of pleasantness and peace per Proverbs 3:17
- He says His Torah is for our good and well-being per Deuteronomy 6:24
- He says His Torah is health for our lives per Proverbs 3:8
- He says His Torah is life to our soul and a graceful ornament for our neck per Prov 3:22
- He says His Torah is better than pearls and all desires cannot compare to it per Prov 8:11
- He says those who walk with His Torah are praiseworthy per Psalms 119:1
- He says observing His Torah is how we purify our path per Psalms 119:9
- He says His Torah is better than thousands in gold and silver per Psalms 119:72
- He says His Torah brings abundant peace to those who love Him and His Torah per Psalms 119:165
- He says there is one Torah for all per Exodus 12:49/Leviticus 24:22
- He says those who hate His Torah love death per Proverbs 8:36
- He says His Torah is the way of faith per Psalms 119:29-30
- He says His Torah makes us wiser than our enemies per Psalms 119:98
- He says His Torah is a lamp for my feet and a light for my path per Psalms 119:105
- He says one who finds His Torah has found life per Proverbs 8:35
- He says one who finds His Torah has found favor from HaShem per Proverbs 8:35
- He says Messiah Yeshua is the GOAL of His Torah, meaning without His Torah, Messiah cannot be known per Romans 10:4
- He says if we had believed Moshe/Torah, we would have believed Messiah per John 5:46
- He says His Torah makes us wiser than our enemies per Psalms 119:98
- He says His salvation is far from the wicked for they sought not His Torah per Psalms 119:155
- He says to hold fast to and guard His Torah, for it is our life per Proverbs 4:13
Chanukah, which means ‘Dedication’ in Hebrew, points too the dedication and re-dedication of the Temple of HaShem in Jerusalem. It is all about purity and service to HaShem. Biblically, Chanukah begins on the 25th day of the month of Kislev, and lasts for eight days. No, it is not in any way shape or form added too by the Rabbis, as is routinely accused of happening. It is from HaShem and the doing of Chanukah is prophesied in the very End of Days.
What separates Chanukah out from the Moedim (Feasts) of HaShem as listed in Vayikra (Leviticus) 23, is there is no level of Kedusha (Holiness/Separation) with Chanukah, meaning, we can still work as normal, eat as normal, as opposed to Pesach, Shavuot, Yom Kippur, etc.
Historically, the name ‘Chanukah’ was given in commemoration of the historical fact the Jewish fighters rested from their battles against the Syrian-Greeks on the 25th day of Kislev. Further, when the Altar was defiled by idolatry by the Greeks, it had to be rebuilt. We read in Tractate Avodah Zarah 52b in the Talmud Bavli, the Hasmoneans (Also known as the ‘Maccabees’) cleansed the Temple and rebuilt the Altar and dedicated it to the service of HaShem. The Hasmoneans completed the cleansing of the Temple and the dedication of the Altar to HaShem on the 25th of Kislev. The Chanukah festival commemorates the rededication of the Temple in the days of the Hasmoneans. As such, it is perceived as relating in many ways to the original dedication of the Tabernacle in the time of Moses.
Why is Chanukah a time which lasts for eight days? Since nothing new can be added too or subtracted from the Tanach (Torah, Nevaim and Ketuvim), Chanukah would be a time which lasts for eight days because the Moedim of Succot lasts for eight days. Chanukah and Succot are very closely related.
The light of the Menorah is very important and significant! The light of the candles are kindled to give inspiration, for the light of Messiah must burn brightly in our hearts…point is, the lights of the Menorah signify illuminating the light of Messiah. We are to let burn within us the light of Messiah so others can see that light. Further, the light symbolizes the Torah of HaShem. This is why Tractate Shabbos 23b in the Talmud Bavli says “One who scrupulously observes the kindling of the Chanukah light will have children who are Torah scholars.” Proverbs 6:23 says “For the lamp is a mitzvah and Torah is light…” As a result of the command to kindle the lights of Chanukah, the light of Torah follows.
The center candle of the Menorah is referred to as ‘Shemash’ branch or ‘The Servant Branch’. It is from this branch that the other candles receive their light from. This Shemash Branch is another picture of Messiah for the light of Chanukah is the Light of Messiah.
The summation of Chanukah can be stated as follows: It is a festival which the Temple and the Torah of HaShem are front and center! It commemorates standing strong in defiance against idolatry and Replacement Theology. It is about choosing to Whom and where will our loyalties lie! Do we choose to serve ourselves and embrace the idolatry of the world at this time of year i.e. Christmas, or do we choose to stand up for and with HaShem, the Sovereign of the Universe and His Torah in the face of all the idolatry and Replacement Theology?
Further significance of Chanukah signals the ultimate salvation, redemption and rededication of the entire world in service to HaShem, may it be so very, very soon in our days!
I have included a very good YouTube teaching from my teacher, Joseph Good, of HaTikvah Ministries, which he is discussing Chanukah and dispelling a lot of the common accusations thrown about by Christendom, Hebrew Roots and Messianic Christendom for those who may be interested. Here is the link: https://www.facebook.com/HatikvaMinistries/videos/579712373327193/.
As I stated above this is intended to be a very quick Op.
Shabbat Shalom and Chanukah Sameach!