Inside Israel – The first light of Chanuka / 8 Dec. 2012

JerAtNight1

Hi and welcome to a look Inside Israel during this time of Light.  Our sis in Jerusalem gives us some background about Chanuka and how it blesses her .. .and hopefully us too.  God bless you as you read and pray for Israel and J!  Now, here she is . . .

LIGHT!  HE rescued us from darkness and brought us into the kingdom of His wonderful LIGHT.  His very Name is The Light (“I Am the Way, the Truth and The Light”…”I Am the Light of the world…”). I love meditating on LIGHT and it seems to me that I can never exhaust the paths of its delights! 
 
Tonight at sundown the first light of Chanuka will be lit across this nation and in Jewish homes (and many of those attached to us) through out the world.  Chanuka is NOT a scripturally commanded holiday, but it, like Purim (the Esther holiday) is basically celebrated by all Jews because the miracle that it commemorates so points to God’s
deliverance.  I am sure that you all know the story by now…how the temple was desecrated by the Greek invasion and how Judah Macabee and his brothers led the demoralized, rag tag Jews to victory against the Greeks and reclaimed the Temple.  They found that all of the ‘holy oil’ had been desecrated as well and there was no oil with which to light the menorah, the lamp in the temple that was to never go out.  It took 8 days to prepare the oil…and only one vessel was found unbroken.  Chanuka celebrates the mighty way in which God multiplied the Light…the oil…for eight days, until the people could provide their own. What an example of Who HE is and His ways in provision! 
 
Jesus walked in the Temple during Chanuka…the feast of the dedication in winter.  THE LIGHT walked in the temple and celebrated the miracle of Light!  And we continue to celebrate that today, although as a nation and a people we don’t yet understand WHO we are celebrating!
 
The chanukiah (special Chanuka menorah) is lit each night at sundown (we also have huge community ones lit on many street corners) – another light added each night from right to left until all 8 are lit on the last night.  A prayer is recited and most of them include that we are COMMANDED to light these lights, but since we aren’t, most believers don’t say this.  This is a lovely prayer that many use:
 
We kindle these lights [to commemorate] the saving acts, miracles and wonders which You have performed for our forefathers, in those days at this time, through Your holy priests. Throughout the eight days of Chanukah, these lights are sacred, and we are not permitted to make use of them, but only to look at them, in order to offer thanks and praise to Your great Name for Your miracles, for Your wonders and for Your salvations.
 
Chanuka is considered mainly a holiday for children and gifts are given to them as well as candies…there are special games played (spinning the deride being the most popular) and songs sung.  Ofcourse, being a ‘Jewish’ holiday, there are tons of special foods…and being a people who love symbolism, most of the food is o-i-l-y! ‘Sofganioat’, the most popular Israeli treat, is like a filled donut without a hole. Ashkenazi Jews  (eastern European in origin)eat ‘latkes’ – a deep friend potato pancake, often topped with applesauce.  Everyone has their own ‘tradition’.  It is a joyous holiday and everyone is happy (although SOME of us, whose children and grandchildren aren’t here might struggle… L a bit) and taking children here and there for special doings for all 8 days. 
Shortly I will be leaving for our fellowship where we will light the first candle together and sing some of the traditional songs along with our own worship. 
To me, this is an extraordinary season in which to be celebrating HIS miracle of multiplied Light, as darkness seems to be multiplying all around us, HIS Light still prevails, and WILL prevail!  Soon, against much opposition, we who believe will ALSO, in various ways, celebrate THE LIGHT THAT CAME INTO THE WORLD…silently, so silently. 
This ISN’T a very ‘anointed’ letter, but it IS The totally anointed GOD Whom I can’t but point to as we prepare to light these small lights here shortly.
I wish you…us…all…LIGHT, and the blessing of seeing Light in His Light. Happy Chanuka!   Lovingly from Jerusalem, your sis   
ani b’derek

 

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Published in: on December 16, 2012 at 9:18 am  Comments (16)  
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16 Comments

  1. Thanks for sharing. I love to read about what’s happening in Israel. Blessings,
    Dana

  2. I had not known what Chanuka was abut until recently and then only that it had to do with God keeping the lamp burning. I did not know the rest that she puts so clearly.

  3. Amen, I confess that I have never known why Chanuka was celebrated or what its purpose was until I read this, and I saw the “Light” about it. 🙂 Thanks so much for sharing these letters from our sister in the Lord, so that we can know her and love her and pray for both her and Jerusalem.

    Love,
    Cheryl

  4. Reblogged this on Burning Fire Shut Up In My Bones and commented:
    For those who are ignorant about why Chanuka (Hanukkah) is celebrated, read this message from our sister in Jerusalem, and as always let us pray for the peace of Jerusalem!

  5. I never knew the origins of chanuka before – neat!

  6. Lots of things are happening in the Middle East and we better be praying and watching for time is drawing near.

  7. It is wonderful to hear of the Jewish culture from someone in it who does know the “WHO we are celebrating.”
    Blessings ~ Wendy

  8. Me too, Dana! Thanks for being here, and I will send your comment off to our Sis in Jerusalem .. to bless you! God bless you!

  9. I really like the way she explains things. 🙂 Sometimes she feels bad for talking about the feasts or holidays when she has before, but I never get tired of her telling about it all. God bless you , Mike, as He keeps His lamp lit in you!

  10. Oh, you bless me again and J will be too, that there was a reason for her to explain about Chanuka the way she did . ..her feeling it wasn’t anointed, but we really needing to hear about it all just the way she did. God bless you, Cheryl, as He brings you Light and love!

  11. Thanks so much for the reblog blessings! 🙂

  12. Yay! She will be thrilled to know that her letter was just what we needed! 🙂 God bless you, Melody, as you walk in His light!

  13. I know what you mean, dear Desiray. God bless you as you watch and pray!

  14. That is what makes these letters so special, Wendy! She can share what she sees with her eyes but also what her spiritual eyes see too, in Jesus. God bless you and yours as you celebrate Him!

  15. Everything in the Old Temple services was symbolic of our relationship with YAHWEH as His spiritual priesthood…a holy nation of people… as it says in Peter. So the menorah was a symbol of Yeshua the Light of the world in this dark place… and the precious aromatic oil that filled it daily of the Holy Spirit who fills us daily as well… or so we SHOULD be filled up daily and not run out of the anointed Aroma and Light of Christ!
    Love from Psalmist Susan… a singer of the Lord’s song in Australia..

  16. Thank you, Susan, for how you explain this all so beautifully! 🙂 God bless you! Your comment has been sent off to Jerusalem .. a song for our sis there!
    love and prayers!


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