Israel and the Diaspora Jewish Holidays

Hanukkah, Night Five

Written by my friend Aaron Gann, reproduced here with permission.

Today on the fifth day of Hanukkah, let us focus on another aspect, that of lights.

Every night we will kindle lights which serve to remind us of all that God has done and will continue to do for us.

One of the most fundamental aspects of celebrating Hanukkah, aside from the food and festivities is that of lights. Every night we will kindle lights which serve to remind us of all that God has done and will continue to do for us. When we light the candles, we are not to make use of them, for that would downplay their purpose. These are not simple lights that are used for everyday purposes where another candle or light would easily suffice. These lights are to serve as a visual reminder of the Menorah which stood in the Holy Place and the miracle thereof.

By the time of first century Israel, Hanukkah had taken on a second title, the festival lights. Indeed, for not only do we light these lights, but we place them by a window for all the world to see. In essence it is a testimony of our faith in The Lord and His promises of deliverance. It also stands for a light that shines in the darkness, for though the darkness of the world was closing in on the Jewish people, the Light of The Lord continued to shine, and never was able to be completely snuffed out. Instead it shines defiantly against the dark, its brilliance shining for all to see.

In his book, the prophet Isaiah spoke of person, known as the servant of The Lord. This man would be One in whom The Lord delights, that He would have His Spirit upon Him. He would not break a bruised reed, nor extinguish a burning wick. Of This servant Isaiah writes,

He says, “It is too small a thing that You should be My Servant

To raise up the tribes of Jacob and to restore the preserved ones of Israel;

I will also make You a light of the nations

So that My salvation may reach to the end of the earth.”

This servant would be none other than The Lord Himself, His Word come in the flesh. For as John writes, “In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men.” the servant would be known by the name of Yeshua, Salvation from The Lord, a man who would not only save His own people from their sins, but also would be a light to the nations. Just as the Menorah would shine bright illuminating the darkness, so too Has His light shone in the darkness of the world and illuminating the hearts of those who have believed on His Name.

He is the Light of the World and those that follow Him shall also have the Light of life, and will no longer stumble in darkness (John 8:12). Today as we celebrate the fifth day of the Feast of Dedication, let us look at the lights and remember our Messiah and Savior. Yeshua, the servant of The Lord who sets the captives free and opens up the eyes blinded by darkness.

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