A Daily Sharing by Eudora

In 2014, I shared how the feast of Dedication came about. I shared a portion each night on my Facebook wall.  This is a copy of that sharing:

The light of life… What is the light of life?

The Spirit of holiness is the power through which Yahwey activates or manifest’s His supernatural revelation, strength, wisdom, courage and knowledge.

His presence dwells in selected individuals for the operation of speaking too and through, the children of the God of Israel. This is all made possible through the work of Messiah – He Who came in the name of His Father.

The folks in Whom His Spirit dwells are the set apart ones. The Spirit of holiness and truth that indwells in true believers leads, guides, teaches comforts and empowers us to live righteously.

The day of the first night of:     The Feast of Dedication –

Do you know anything about the Feast of Dedication? If you believe in Yahushua, it would behoove you to learn why I celebrate the Feast of Dedication, also known as Hanukkah. The next eight days I will be sharing here on face book ( And a few friends in an email) not only what Hanukkah is all about but I will share it with you from the perspective of a full blown; sold out believer and follower of Yahushua HaMashiach, known by many as Jesus The Christ.

The Feast of Dedication is not one of the seven feast’s that Yahwey ordained, but it is a feast day that was instituted by man to commemorate the purification of the temple after a heathen king by the name of Antiochus Epiphanies’, defiled the temple of the God of Israel. This event happened after the Old Testament was written and 168 before Christ. It was the prophet Daniel that prophesied this event as a dual prophecy. Throughout this week I will try to share briefly what happened and why we should not only know about this event, but should never forget it either.

Because of the horrible dark period in Israel’s history, the Feast of Dedication is now a traditional holiday, similar to America’s traditional holidays such as Thanksgiving and Independence Day. It is now most often referred to as Hanukkah.

Nevertheless, Yahushua did observe this feast that is often called Hanukkah, which is the Hebrew transliteration of the word ‘dedication’. Because Yahushua did observe this feast, we can deduce that He did not find it unacceptable to remember a time of mercy, shown on behalf of a people and their place of gathering to worship in the temple of the God of Israel.

Although Hanukkah is not a solemn feasts day (mow`ed, a day of appointment), of the LORD, a similar time is coming that was spoken of by the prophets Daniel and Isaiah as well as Yahushua and Paul. Like I mentioned Daniel spoke of this prophecy as a dual prophecy but Isaiah, Yahushua and Paul spoke of a time in our future, when we will go through an ‘appointed time’ (A mow’ed), such as never before that will be VERY SIMULAR to the time that brought about the Feast of Dedication that Yahushua did celebrate. I am speaking of a future day when the Anti-Christ who will come on the scene in the future of this world, who will seek to get the Jews first to bow down to His image. (More about this later)

The Feast of Dedication often referred to as Hanukkah is an eight day celebration that will begin at sunset THIS EVENING.

What I find interesting about what transpired during the brief mention of this traditional holiday in scripture, was written by John the beloved. The Holy Spirit reveals to us in chapter ten what was going on and the season in which it occurs, (winter) and tells us that Yahushua walked in the temple, in Solomon’s Porch. A bunch of Jewish men gathered around Him and began to question how long He would keep them in doubt. I find that ironic. They were the ones who doubted who He was and who He claimed to be. He did not control their disbelief, nor does He control anyone’s disbelief.

Yahushua answered them, “I told you, and ye believed not: the works that I do in my Father’s name, they bear witness of Me. But ye believe not, because ye are not of My sheep, as I said unto you. My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of My hand. My Father, which gave them Me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of My Father’s hand. I and my Father are one.

Yahushua knew full well that those people were trying to trap Him but He didn’t hesitate to tell them that they were not His sheep. It doesn’t matter how much His sheep are scattered here or there, in this country or that country, He knows where each and every one of His sheep are and none are lost to Him. No matter how the enemy tries to steal their identity, kill their hope or destroy their relationship with Him, the enemy cannot and does not have the power to pluck them from His hand. His hand… by the power of the Holy Spirit… guides and protects those whom He has chosen.

To all who celebrate Yahushua as the light of the world, just as those who restored and then re-dedicated the temple again to the pure worship of the house of Yahwey, I celebrate with you.

As the Hanukkah Menorah is lit each evening at sunset on the memorial of this winter festival, I too, will light candles in remembrance. When I light the candles, I remember the words of Yahushua spoken later on that same evening. “As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”

It is He whom I celebrate, Yahushua… The Light of the world.

Matisyahu – “Happy Hanukkah”

2nd Day:   “How The Feast Of Dedication All Began”

Let us begin with scripture:

And as I was considering, behold, an he goat came from the west on the face of the whole earth, and touched not the ground: and the goat had a notable horn between his eyes. Daniel 8:5

Daniel is unveiling the spiritual realm and the spiritual kings and princes that were the true power behind the Babylonian, Medo Persian, Greek and pre-AD 70 Roman Empire. There are actually two animals in Daniels prophetic dream but for the sake of ease, I will just say that the ram with two horns clearly represented the Medo-Persian Empire while the he-goat clearly represents the Grecian Empire. The reason I am sharing this information is because it is pertinent to the story of Hanukkah and how it all began.

The he-goat or rough goat in some bibles, corresponds to the belly and thighs of brass in the image shown to Daniel in chapter two (SEE IMAGE) and also the leopard with four wings of a fowl and four heads in chapter 7 (SEE IMAGE). The fact that the ram is marching and ‘touched not the ground’ and later in chapter seven had ‘four wings of a fowl’ indicates the rapidity of the Grecian armies attack and conquest. As we will see, history reveals to us the reality as to what Daniel saw in his vision. Yet Daniel explains things to the best of his ability of what he saw in the visions, never having seen them manifest in the future. It is important that we keep this in pour mind. To give you clear understanding, before you ever saw a plane fly, how would you have described it, if you saw it in a vision before it was ever invented?

In Daniel 7 the four empires shown in chapter 2 are shown again in the form of four beasts: Babylon, as a lion; Medo-Persia as a bear; Greece as a leopard; and (pre-AD 70) Rome as a dreadful non-descript beast (Daniel 7:4-8). Each of these beasts represents a confederation of demonic rulers behind each of the four respective empires.

In Daniels prophetic vision, the notable horn between the eyes of the ram symbolized the Grecian kingdom’s first and greatest king. How do I know? Often times the Bible reveals its own written word.

And the rough goat is the king of Grecia: and the great horn that is between his eyes is the first king. ~ Daniel 8:21

From history we have learned that more than just a king, the rough goat was one of history’s most powerful generals ever, known as Alexander the Great. The fact that the ram only had one horn, was actually called to our attention because most rams we have ever seen have two horns. This single horn located between the eyes indicates the great military wisdom and power of Alexander.

At the age of twenty two, Alexander’s brilliant tactics along with his highly trained and disciplined army, Alexander the Great defeated the Medo-Persian army in an astounding three years even though the Medo-Persian army was said to have had 800,000 million men strong while Alexander’s army was merely 50,000 soldiers strong. Let’s look at the graphic way that Daniel describes the battle:

And I saw him (The he-goat) come close unto the ram (Medo-Persia), and he was moved with choler (anger) against him, and smote the ram, and brake his two horns: and there was no power in the ram to stand before him, but he cast him down to the ground, and stamped upon him: and there was none that could deliver the ram out of his hand. ~ Daniel 8:7

Alexander’s defeat of the Medo-Persian army was complete and devastating thus helping us understand scripture how the leopard took flight and ‘touched not the ground’. During the next seven years of Alexander’s brief twelve years of power, he continued sweeping south to Europe and east all the way to India spreading his Greek world view upon all his military conquest’s known as ‘Hellenism’. His plan was to make all defeated peoples adapt to a Grecian way of life and in doing so he would have the power of keeping them loyal to him and his growing empire. When he entered Asia he captured everything in sight and although he was a king, he lived like a soldier. Yet after he left Greece, he never returned.

Stay tuned tomorrow night for the history of ‘How the Little Horn Grew’ .

3rd Day:   ‘How the Little Horn Grew’

Like I mentioned last evening at the age of twenty two, Alexander the Great left the scene of history just as quickly as he sprang upon it. His unexpected and untimely death shocked the world and left his conquered Empire without a reigning king. The kingdom consisted of Eastern Europe to Asia Minor, India and Egypt. Without an heir apparent before his death, he divided his kingdom among four generals who took the reins and divided the Greek Empire into four regions. Remember last evening I mentioned that the he-goat in chapter two represented Alexander and also connecting the he-goat to the leopard with four wings of a fowl in chapter 7? Now you know why. Alexander’s swift movement marching across the land, ‘touched not the ground’ having ‘four wings of a fowl’ helps us to now understand what the four wings represent on the leopard looking beast with the four heads and the four wings.

Remember that I also mentioned that the he-goat and the four winged leopard also represented the belly and the thighs of the image revealed in chapter two of Daniel’s writings? Suffice it to say that once Alexander’s belly was full and he took flight into Asia never having been seen again, from his loins (thighs) grew these four generals (Four wings of a fowl) who took over and divided what would now be known as the Grecian Empire.

I am going to skip mentioning the other three generals of the four headed beast for the same reason that Daniel did. For reasons known to Yahwey, the Holy Spirit doesn’t make mention of three of these generals but does reveal to Daniel quite a bit about one of these wings.

After this I beheld, and lo another, like a leopard, which had upon the back of it four wings of a fowl; the beast had also four heads; and dominion was given to it. After this I saw in the night visions, and behold a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, and strong exceedingly; and it had great iron teeth: it devoured and brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with the feet of it: and it was diverse from all the beasts that were before it; and it had ten horns. I considered the horns, and, behold, there came up among them another little horn, before whom there were three of the first horns plucked up by the roots: and, behold, in this horn were eyes like the eyes of man, and a mouth speaking great things.~ Daniel 7:6-8

For more than 100 years these four generals and their sons behind them ruled and controlled Alexander’s kingdom that had been divided. I am only going to work with two of the generals that were in power at the time point that I am trying to get to, to explain how Hanukkah came about. One general named Ptolemy would rule Egypt with Israel to his north while the other ruled both Syria and Southern Israel. His name was General Seleucus. For the longest time, poor Israel was trapped between these two generals who actually often fought over her. Their fate depended upon who was the ruling general at the time that determined who Israel would pay taxes too. After 150 years, an eighth ruler of this Selecus (Selecid) dynasty came into power. He was King Antiochus IV who later became known as ‘Epiphanies’, a title that he gave to himself. This name means: ‘manifestation of God’.

In Daniels vision, Antiochus is that ‘little horn’. He came to power as a weak leader and later waxed exceeding great, as is written in Daniel 8:9 :   And out of one of them came forth a little horn, which waxed exceeding great, toward the south, and toward the east, and toward the pleasant land. (Israel)

Daniel mentions ‘the little horn’ twice. Once in the scripture above and then again in the following:

I considered the horns, and, behold, there came up among them another little horn, before whom there were three of the first horns plucked up by the roots: and, behold, in this horn were eyes like the eyes of man, and a mouth speaking great things. ~ Daniel 7:8

If you want to know all that Daniel wrote of this ‘little horn’ read the following in your Bible: Daniel 8:9-25, chapter 11:21-35.

King Antiochus Epiphanies’ IV is an ascendant of the future anti-christ. It is extremely important that we learn about and understand this fella because the future anti-christ that is coming on the scene in the future of this world will portray very similar characteristics as this mad ruling king who rose up from the Seleucid dynasty. AND…. The anti-christ will obviously be a descendant of this dynasty. A descendant of evil.

The next step of our journey, I will be introducing the writings of a couple of historical authors because there are other writings outside of the books of the Bible where we learn about history that may be only hinted at through prophecy in the scriptures. The Book of Maccabees 1 is one such book in the apocryphal collection. There are a few books of the Maccabees but I will focus only on book 1 and maybe book 2. Just so you know, these books are recognized by scholars only as historical in value. They are obviously not canonized. Another writing I will be using is the writings of a first century fella by the name of Josephus, also recognized by conservative scholars. He also wrote a bit on the life of King Antiochus Epiphanies IV that will help us peer into the history past.

Stay tuned for more tomorrow night!

4th Day

Like I mentioned the night before, Antiochus ‘the little horn’ came to power as a weak leader and later waxed exceeding great, as is written in Daniel 8:9. He sought to defeat the surrounding nations in his region and gathered them into his so called kingdom of ruler ship by using the Greek cultures through adopting Hellenistic values and morals. He expected them to wear Greek clothing and style, learn the Greek language, worship the Greek gods and accept this way of philosophy and life. He expected the conquered to also join in his military conquests by serving in his army of peoples.

It was this thought and intention that he took with him when he marched into Israel; the pleasant land. History records that He sought to turn the Jewish people and those Gentiles who had assimilated themselves into the ways of the God of Israel, and turn them from the Torah; it’s instructions as well as circumcision which identify the children of the God of Israel as being in a covenant relationship with Him. It was his fullest intention to Hellenize these people and he did so with success.

A large segment of the Jewish people entered into a covenant with him and willingly gave in to his demands. We can read about this in Maccabees 1 1:11-15. I found the books of Maccabees pretty easily at Bible Gateway. Here is the following link:

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Maccabees+1%3A11-15&version=DRA

1 Maccabees 1:11-15Douay-Rheims 1899 American Edition (DRA)

And there came out of them a wicked root, Antiochus the Illustrious, the son of King Antiochus, who had been a hostage at Rome: and he reigned in the hundred and thirty-seventh year of the kingdom of the Greeks. In those days there went out of Israel wicked men, and they persuaded many, saying: Let us go, and make a covenant with the heathens that are round about us: for since we departed from them, many evils have befallen us. And the word seemed good in their eyes. And some of the people determined to do this, and went to the king: and he gave them license to do after the ordinances of the heathens. And they built a place of exercise in Jerusalem, according to the laws of the nations:

This falling away by many of the people, living in Israel who went to the king and made a covenant with him; apostatized from the God of Israel, from His Instructions and ways. First Maccabees 2:15 says it this way: And they that were sent from king Antiochus came thither, to compel them that were fled into the city of Modin, to sacrifice, and to burn incense, and to depart from the law of God.

Specifically, this sacrifice was the killing of a pig in the worship of the heathen deity Zeus Olympus. This was an abomination of great magnitude for observant Israel. Some of the children of Israel rebelled against this and obviously some gave in and made a covenant with Antiochus. The ancient historian continues telling his family story in 1st Maccabees 1:41-49

Her sanctuary was desolate like a wilderness, her festival days were turned into mourning, her Sabbaths into reproach, her honours were brought to nothing. Her dishonour was increased according to her glory, and her excellency was turned into mourning. And king Antiochus wrote to all his kingdom, that all the people should be one: and every one should leave his own law. And all nations consented according to the word of king Antiochus. And many of Israel consented to his service, and they sacrificed to idols, and profaned the Sabbath. And the king sent letters by the hands of messengers to Jerusalem, and to all the cities of Juda: that they should follow the law of the nations of the earth, And should forbid holocausts and Sacrifices, and atonements to be made in the temple of God. And should prohibit the Sabbath, and the festival days, to be celebrated. And he commanded the holy places to be profaned, and the holy people of Israel.

Remember I mentioned that Daniel’s writing is more than likely a dual prophecy? This means that what happened in one era, may happen again in a different era. This covenant which many of the people entered into with Antiochus foretells the covenant which many from Israel will enter with the Anti-christ in a future day, according to the scriptures. Daniel, The prophet of the Bible said it this way: And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate. ~ Daniel 9:27

This actually happened to Israel already through this era with Antiochus. The events surrounding Antiochus, his defilement of the Temple in Israel and the apostasy of many of the Jewish people is one of the most apparent & visible events in Jewish history.

If you are an avid reader of the Bible, you might just now be beginning to understand what was really being taught by Yahushua. He was calling the people back to Torah, back to the ways that His Father had taught to Moses and the children of Israel whom Yahwey had brought out of bondage from the land of Egypt. What you may not be aware of is that those who were called sojourners that came out with the children of Israel are the people that were called Gentiles in the Second Testament. When Antiochus came on the scene, many of these people chose to apostatize from what they knew and joined Hellenism and yet others who had followed in the ways of Yahwey, had gone overboard in their ways.

Before I close for this evening, I will share just a small example of what I mean by going overboard. You probably remember reading in your own Bible where Yahushua said the following… “But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the Sabbath day: For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.” – According to the Rabbi’s and their added traditions, a Sabbath day’s journey is 2,000 feet, a little more than half a mile. In light of His admonition Yahushua was telling them that if they had to run for their life to the hills on a Sabbath during the great tribulation, they weren’t going to make it very far if they held to their man- made traditions.

For the success of war is not in the multitude of the army, but strength cometh from heaven.

5th Day

~ 1st Before moving on through the story of Antiochus, I want to spend tonight showing the similarities of what has been written regarding King Antiochus Epiphanies IV and the wanna be king (Anti-christ) that will one day make himself known. I can tell you that it has not escaped my attention that even saying the name Antiochus really isn’t too far from saying anti-christ.

We know from the words of Yahushua recorded in both Matthew and Mark, and from the writings of the first book of Maccabees that both Antiochus and the antichrist cause the breaking of the covenant that the people had then and still have with Yahwey, by introducing a false god into the Temple.

Let’s look first at the words of Yahushua that Matthew and Mark recorded:

Matthew 24:15 When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)

Mark 13:14 ¶ But when ye shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing where it ought not, (let him that readeth understand,) then let them that be in Judaea flee to the mountains:

It sounds to me as if a statue of sorts will be set up in a future temple. From the time that Yahushua said these words to the time of the last writing in the book of Revelation, we do not read anything recorded of a statue being set up in the Temple, so we know that this is still a prophecy to be fulfilled.

Now let’s read what is written in the first book of Maccabees. Of Antiochus it is said:

And after Antiochus had ravaged Egypt in the hundred and forty-third year, he returned and went up against Israel. And he went up to Jerusalem with a great multitude. And he proudly entered into the sanctuary, and took away the golden altar, and the candlestick of light, and all the vessels thereof, and the table of proposition, and the pouring vessels, and the vials, and the little mortars of gold, and the veil, and the crowns, and the golden ornament that was before the temple: and he broke them all in pieces. And he took the silver and gold, and the precious vessels: and he took the hidden treasures which he found: and when he had taken all away he departed into his own country. And he made a great slaughter of men, and spoke very proudly. And there was great mourning in Israel, and in every place where they were. 1st Maccabees 1:21-26

Later on in the same chapter we read this:

And all nations consented according to the word of King Antiochus. And many of Israel consented to his service, and they sacrificed to idols, and profaned the Sabbath. And the King sent letters by the hands of messengers to Jerusalem, and to all the cities of Juda: that they should follow the law of the nations of the earth, And should forbid holocausts and sacrifices, and atonements to be made in the temple of God. And should prohibit the Sabbath, and the festival days, to be celebrated. And he commanded the holy places to be profaned, and the holy people of Israel. And he commanded altars to be built, and temples, and idols, and swine’s flesh to be immolated, and unclean beasts. And that they should leave their children uncircumcised, and let their souls be defiled with all uncleanness’s, and abominations, to the end that they should forget the law, and should change all the justifications of God. And that whosoever would not do according to the word of king Antiochus should be put to death.

According to all these words he wrote to his whole kingdom, and he appointed rulers over the people that should force them to do these things. And they commanded the cities of Judah to sacrifice. Then many of the people were gathered to them that had forsaken the law of the Lord: and they committed evils in the land: And they drove away the people of Israel into lurking holes, and into the secret places of fugitives. On the fifteenth day of the month Casleu, in the hundred and forty-fifth year, king Antiochus set up the abominable idol of desolation upon the altar of God, and they built altars throughout all the cities of Judah round about: ~ 1st Maccabees 1:43-57

Paul even wrote the following in his letter to the folks at Thessalonica regarding this future anti-christ: ¶ Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto Him, That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand.

¶ Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God. Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things? And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time. For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way. And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness. ~ 2nd Thessalonians 2:1-12

Paul makes a lot of things clear for us.

We can also read the following in the book of Revelation:

¶ And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon. And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men, And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live. And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed. And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six. ~ Revelation 13: 11-18

One small thing I want to touch on that was recorded of the edit of King Antiochus is this:

1st Macabees 1: 63-64 Now the women that circumcised their children, were slain according to the commandment of king Antiochus. And they hanged the children about their necks in all their houses: and those that had circumcised them, they put to death.

The reason I wanted to share this horrific piece of information is to help folks understand why Yahushua said the following: Matthew 24:16 Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains:

Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house: Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes. And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days! ~ Matthew 24:16-19

Will these one day be your words :

God be merciful unto us: it is not profitable for us to forsake the law, and the justices of God: We will not hearken to the words of king Antiochus (anti-christ) neither will we sacrifice, and transgress the commandments of our law, to go another way. ~ 1st Maccabees 2:21-22 [Parentheses added.]

Will you one day apostatize from Yahwey and His commandments, or have you already done so? Maccabees 3:19

Preparation Day

What seemed good in the eyes of Antiochus certainly did not look good in the eyes of Mattathias Maccabees. Remember at the close to the last part of my last segment I mentioned that the ancient historian continues telling his family story in 1st Maccabees. This is because the Maccabees were a Jewish family who did not bow down to what Antiochus wanted.

After the Jewish Temple was seized by Syrian-Greek soldiers and dedicated to the worship of the god Zeus, many folks in the Jewish communities were upset by what was going on but were too afraid to fight back. Antiochus was very upset about the defiant Jews who were disobeying his orders. In 167 B.C.E. Antiochus made the observance of Judaism an offense punishable by death. He also ordered all Jews to worship Greek gods. He did all of this by issuing a decree. Let’s read about that from the second book of Maccabees.

And he spoke to them peaceable words in deceit: and they believed him. And he fell upon the city suddenly, and struck it with a great slaughter, and destroyed much people in Israel. And he took the spoils of the city, and burnt it with fire, and threw down the houses thereof, and the walls thereof round about: And they took the women captive, and the children, and the cattle they possessed. And they built the city of David with a great and strong wall, and with strong towers, and made it a fortress for them: And they placed there a sinful nation, wicked men, and they fortified themselves therein: and they stored up armor, and victuals, and gathered together the spoils of Jerusalem; And laid them up there: and they became a great snare. And this was a place to lie in wait against the sanctuary, and an evil devil in Israel. And they shed innocent blood round about the sanctuary, and defiled the holy place. And the inhabitants of Jerusalem fled away by reason of them, and the city was made the habitation of strangers, and she became a stranger to her own seed, and her children forsook her. Her sanctuary was desolate like a wilderness, her festival days were turned into mourning, her Sabbaths into reproach, and her honors were brought to nothing. Her dishonor was increased according to her glory, and her Excellency was turned into mourning.

And King Antiochus wrote to his entire kingdom, that all the people should be one: and everyone should leave his own law. And all nations consented according to the word of King Antiochus. And many of Israel consented to his service, and they sacrificed to idols, and profaned the Sabbath. And the king sent letters by the hands of messengers to Jerusalem, and to all the cities of Juda: that they should follow the law of the nations of the earth, and should forbid holocausts and sacrifices, and atonements to be made in the temple of God. And should prohibit the Sabbath, and the festival days, to be celebrated. And he commanded the holy places to be profaned, and the holy people of Israel. And he commanded altars to be built, and temples, and idols, and swine’s flesh to be immolated and unclean beasts. ~ 1 Maccabees 1: 31-50

The decree that Antiochus wrote to all the nations in his empire was that they were to abandon their own customs and become one people. All the Gentiles and even many of the Israelites submitted to this decree. They accepted the new official pagan religion and they began to offer sacrifices to idols, and no longer observed the Sabbath. Even in Jerusalem and all the towns of Judea were made aware that they were to comply too the new order and were no longer allowed to offer the burnt offerings, grain offerings, or wine offerings in the Temple that they had always done before. Because of the foreign sacrifices that were now being offered on the altar, the temple and all of its holy things were defiled. Their Sabbaths and their holy days were supposed to be just an ordinary work day. They were even forbid to circumcise their sons because that was now considered a violation. The penalty for disobeying the king’s decree was death.

SABBATH

The beginning of the uprising of the Jewish resistance began in the mountain village of Modin, near Jerusalem. Greek soldiers forcibly began to gather the Jewish villages to force the peoples too comply with the demands of Antiochus.

In those days there lived a man given the name of Mattathias the son of John, the son of Simeon, a priest of the sons of Joarib, from Jerusalem, and he lived in the mountain of Modin with his five sons. They had heard and witnessed the great evil that was happening to their brethren both in Judea and Jerusalem. And Mattathias said: Woe is me, wherefore was I born to see the ruin of my people, and the ruin of the holy city, and to dwell there, when it is given into the hands of the enemies? The holy places are come into the hands of strangers: her temple is become as a man without honor. The vessels of her glory are carried away captive: her old men are murdered in the streets, and her young men are fallen by the sword of the enemies. What nation hath not inherited her kingdom, and gotten of her spoils? All her ornaments are taken away. She that was free is made a slave. And behold our sanctuary, and our beauty, and our glory is laid waste, and the Gentiles have defiled them. To what end then should we live any longer?”

Evidently some messengers or perhaps soldiers were sent to the village of Modin to persuade Mattathias and his family to make sacrifices acceptable to the Greek gods and to forsake the commandments of the most High Elohim, the God of Israel. They did not compromise their way of life and would not bow down to the new ruler, or his appointed ways. They knew that Mattathias had a great reputation and that he was a priest. A Greek officer ordered Mattathias, the Priest, too comply with their demands, but Mattathias refused. When another villager stepped forward and offered a sacrifice to the idol of the Greek god, Mattathias became outraged. He drew his sword and killed the villager, then turned on the Greek officer and killed him too. Then in all of his righteous anger, Mattathias pulled down the altar.

After the incident of the villagers death, Mattathias cried out with a loud voice telling the folks in the village that if they wanted to continue to follow to Torah and all of its instructions to follow him.   Mattathias and his five sons hid themselves in the wilderness of Judah as well as all those who did follow Mattathias. They took their families and their livestock and headed to the desert to hide until they could figure out a plan.

Some of the soldiers had reported the incident that had occurred at Modin to some other soldiers of the Kings army of Antiochus that were based in Jerusalem. They reported that certain men (Mattathias and his family) had broken the Kings commandment and were now hiding in the wilderness so a platoon of sorts went after them to seek them out. They waited until the Sabbath day to confront some of the regiment that had now been formed with Mattathias. They told them that they had only two options, obey the Kings order or die. They were not about to profane the Sabbath and the battle began. The folks did not fight back and many died there in the desert land on the Sabbath.

When Mattathias heard about this he deeply mourned for the loss of his brethren in the faith. Everyone that had followed Mattathias into the wilderness got together and decided that if they didn’t fight back their oppressors on the Sabbath that they would all soon die. They determined the following: “Whosoever shall come up against us to fight on the Sabbath day, we will fight against him: and we will not all die, as our brethren that were slain in the secret places.”

More people began to attach themselves to this band of brothers in the faith of the God of Israel, all those that had belief and the will to do the good will of Torah’s instructions. The Maccabees led an army of Jewish nonconformist in a fight with some of the Seleucid dynasty in guerrilla warfare type battle. This ended in a victory which sparked more battles. The Maccabees destroyed pagan altars in the villages, circumcised boys and insisted that those who were in their confines were to continue following Torah’s Instructions as they had originally been commanded according to the Law.

The term Maccabees as used to describe the Jewish army is taken from the Hebrew word for “hammer” so you can just imagine how the folks may have been more afraid of the Maccabees than they were of the oppressive Greek soldiers.

The revolt involved many battles, in which the Maccabean forces gained notoriety among the Seleucid army for their use of guerrilla tactics. After the final victory, the Maccabees entered Jerusalem in triumph and ritually cleansed the Temple, reestablishing traditional Jewish worship there and installing Jonathan Maccabee as high priest. Of course a large Seleucid army was sent to take control of the revolt, but ended up returning to Syria because of the death of Antiochus IV and freedom was simultaneously restored.

It is said that according to Rabbinic tradition, that after the victorious Maccabees completely restored and cleansed the Temple from all the defilement that had transpired with-in, that the Jewish troops were determined to purify the Temple by burning ritual oil in the Temple’s menorah but upon discovery found only small jug of oil that would only last for one day. However, even though they were dismayed, they discovered that after they lit the menorah anyway the small amount of oil lasted a full eight days. Thus the reason for the celebration of Hanukkah lasting eight days, but it did not require attendance at Jerusalem. It was an occasion of much festivity, and was celebrated in nearly the same manner as the feast of tabernacles, with the carrying of branches of trees and with much singing.

But what does all of this have to do with Christians who follow in the faith of what is written in the Bible? Stay tuned for tomorrows conclusion to what the season of Hanukkah represents to all peoples.

1st Day of the week

Exodus 27:20-21 ¶ And thou shalt command the children of Israel, that they bring thee pure oil olive beaten for the light, to cause the lamp to burn always. In the tabernacle of the congregation without the vail, which is before the testimony, Aaron and his sons shall order it from evening to morning before the LORD: it shall be a statute for ever unto their generations on the behalf of the children of Israel.

Knowing that the special oil required does take a long time to make, it certainly could take at least eight days to prepare it and certainly our Father is a plenty capable of a miracle of that nature. What we do know is this; the menorah was to be kept continually filled with pure olive oil.

In 164 before Christ, Judas Maccabees instituted this holiday in memory of the cleansing of the Temple from the pollution of Antiochus Epiphanies’ IV. The holiday is called Feast of Dedication which in Hebrew is Hanukkah which means dedication. It is also known as the Feast of Lights. It was also called by other names; for instance, the days of dedication [renewal] of the altar, the purification of the temple, also by the single name Lights, because it is said that the Jews profusely lighted their abodes during the festival, in remembrance of the return of peace and joy. IN the apocryphal books, 1st Maccabees 4.52-59, 2nd Maccabees 10.1-8, an account is given of this new consecration of the temple.

This feast began that first year, on the twenty-fifth of the month Cisleu, (which answers to the eighteenth of our December and continued for eight days. As a side note, it is also said that the prayers of Judah the Maccabee, before the battles, is especially poignant and faith-inspiring. I for one have never seen this prayer written anywhere with the exception that before the battles they did ask mercy and compassion. (Written in the third chapter)

What we also know is that Yahushua did attend the Feast of Dedication because it is written in our Bible. The Author of the book of John records that it was winter and that Yahushua walked in the Temple in Solomon’s porch. The Greek word for winter is cheimon, pronounced khi-mone’ from a derivative of cheo (to pour; akin to the base of 5490 through the idea of a channel), meaning a storm (as pouring rain); by implication, the rainy season, i.e. winter:–tempest, foul weather, winter. And this is the reason, probably, why our Messiah is represented as walking under the cover of Solomon’s porch, or portico.

John 10:22-23 ¶ And it was at Jerusalem the Feast of the Dedication, and it was winter. And Jesus walked in the temple in Solomon’s porch.

What does all of this have to do with Christians who follow in the faith of what is written in the Bible?

As a Jew, Yahushua would certainly have celebrated Hanukkah. He would have observed the Hanukkah festival according to the customs of His community. I am guessing that this festival may have been celebrated, at least, with the lighting of a Hanukkah lamp which would clearly be different than the Menorah in the Temple. The Menorah has seven stems whereas the Hanukkah Lamp would have I think eight because they would have needed to light the lamp for eight days. In any case, we do not read that Yahushua condemned this celebration and He was obviously there.

There is always more to a story and there is with this one too. The Anti-christ mentioned in the Bible that is to come upon the scene in the world ahead of us is going to be very similar to the fella Antiochus. I firmly believe that there are strong similarities of what has been written regarding King Antiochus Epiphanies IV and the wanna be king (Anti-christ) that will one day make himself known. I can tell you that it has not escaped my attention that even saying the name Antiochus really isn’t too far from saying anti-christ.

We know from the words of Yahushua recorded in both Matthew and Mark, and from the writings of the first book of Maccabees that both Antiochus and the antichrist cause the breaking of the covenant that the people had then and still have with Yahwey, by introducing a false god into the Temple.

Let’s look at the words of Yahushua that Matthew and Mark recorded:

Matthew 24:15 When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)

Mark 13:14 ¶ But when ye shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing where it ought not, (let him that readeth understand,) then let them that be in Judaea flee to the mountains:

It sounds to me as if a statue of sorts will be set up in a future temple. From the time that Yahushua said these words to the time of the last writing in the book of Revelation, we do not read anything recorded of a statue being set up in the Temple, so we know that this is still a prophecy to be fulfilled.

No matter because we can still learn from the past to be prepared for the future. The fact that the temple had to be cleansed reminds me that we too are daily cleansed by the washing of the word, if we actually spend each day letting the oil of truth be poured into our daily existence. For my own thoughts, I fully expect that the Light of the World will return in what I suspect will be the eighth day. And yet again no matter because right or wrong, the re-dedication of the Temple in Jerusalem is no different than our lives being representative of a filthy rag that is cleansed/sanctified and re-dedicated as a temple where the Holy Spirit resides – at least FOR NOW until Yahushua returns and builds His Kingdom.

I can certainly see the value of celebrating this Festival. I find great encouragement through this stretch of history. The Maccabees were willing to fight for their faith and way of life (Torah) and the God of Israel honored their devotion by causing them to reclaim their land and their Temple in one historic battle after another, where in each one they were greatly outnumbered. The Feast of Dedication is a celebration of a time in History when the God of Israel delivered/saved Israel out of the hands of her enemy. Hanukkah is not a holy day by any means, but it certainly is a time of remembrance of the national deliverance of Israel.

Now in celebration each year, one candle is lit on the first night of Hanukkah, two on the second, and so on, until eight candles are lit. This festival still remains to this day as a celebration of the re-dedication of the Temple. What I learned early on is that the middle candle is lit first ‘if’ it is the tallest. . The single candle that lights the others is called the Shamash – the servant. My home made menorah for Hanukkah has the Shamash on the left end so this one is considered my servant candle that lights all of the others. This one to me represents Yahushua, the Light of the world. “That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.” John 1:9

I find joy in this knowing that one by one, His family is being chosen and each one has the oil of the Holy Spirit dwelling with-in them. Knowing this reminds me of this scripture passage: Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. ~ Matthew 5:14

Although candles are the main source of light for the Hanukkah in our day, it was oil that lit the menorah in the Temple.

“Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them: But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him. Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out. But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves. And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut. Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us. But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not. Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.” ~ Matthew 25:1-13

Again for my own thoughts I can think of eight things that I as a believer am reminded of that I am to continuously be steadfast in and it is this: In order for me to bear witness of The Light, I am to continuously believe in the Lord, love in the Lord, boast in the Lord, be faithful in the Lord, be strong in the Lord, hope in the Lord, stand firm in the Lord and last but not least, rejoice in the Lord. We are the children of light and as children of light we are to walk as children of The Light.

Although there are many Christians that comprehend and celebrate Hanukkah, there is an even greater majority of people that profess Christ as Lord but do not understand the meaning of the Festival of Lights or its significance in reference to the Messiah, Yahushua. I once read somewhere that now days, on each of the eight nights, gifts are given to one another. I can certainly understand this as a celebration of the provision of the oil that kept the candles lit. Personally I can see the spirituality of this too, knowing that the Holy Spirit is a gift and the word of Yahwey is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. I also read once before that the light produced by the Hanukkah, is said to be representative of the “Light of the Torah.” Anyone who knows me, knows that I would certainly appreciate this.

“For the commandment is a lamp; and the law is light; and reproofs of instruction are the way of life.” ~ Proverbs 6:23

My prayer and my hope for everyone who celebrates this awesome time of year is that they understand that this is a celebration of rededication, a renewal of sorts as an annual reminder of who we are in Messiah and Who He is in us. The days of our consecration are seven days. But O hallilu-Yah… when the eighth day comes, we will be completely circumcised and prepared for Kingdom living.

Leviticus 8:33 And ye shall not go out of the door of the tabernacle of the congregation in seven days, until the days of your consecration be at an end: for seven days shall he consecrate you.

If you read two chapters of the first book of the Maccabees both on the first night and the last night and only one chapter during the days in the middle, you will have read the whole book during the eight day celebration.

As the glow of the Hanukkah brings light to the darkness; may the True Light, Yahushua HaMashiach (Jesus the Messiah), bring the Light of Truth into your life.

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About eudoranachand

A Spirit filled disciple who continually seeks His kingdom and His righteousness.
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