Happy Hanukkah or Chag Urim Sameach
Did you know that Jesus was present at the time of the Hanukkah celebration?
John 10:22-24 says, “It was now winter, and Jesus was in Jerusalem at the time of Hanukkah. He was at the Temple, walking through the section known as Solomon’s Colonnade. The Jewish leaders surrounded him and asked, how long are you going to keep us in suspense? If you are the Messiah, tell us plainly.”
We need to remember and reflect on Jesus, who is the life and true light of Hanukkah.
John 1:4-9 (NIV), “In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. There was a man sent from God whose name was John. He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all might believe. He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light. The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world.”
Hanukkah remembers a battle of light versus darkness.
This battle is recorded in Daniel 11. This was the Maccabian War, a historical event when good fought against evil when the forces of evil were far larger than the forces of God, but God’s people won the day and overcame evil by the Grace and Mercy of the Lord.
Daniel 11:31-32 (NLT), “His army will take over the Temple fortress, pollute the sanctuary, put a stop to the daily sacrifices, and set up the sacrilegious object that causes desecration. He will flatter and win over those who have violated the covenant. But the people who know their God will be strong and will resist him.”
TODAY WE NEED THE LIGHT!
Today the light of Hanukkah is lit in the dark of winter when there is more darkness than light. On this day, December 1, 2021, we will have 9 hours and 35 minutes of light. We will have 15 hours and 25 minutes of darkness. When darkness covers the face of the earth, and it is cold and wet outdoors, that’s when we need the light that will create warmth, hope, and really shine, exploding the dark. Today is a time of deep spiritual darkness in the soul of humankind. We need the light to shine in the dark!
Romans 13:11-14says, “Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness and let us put on the armor of light. Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.”
How do we put on this armor of light? How do we live?
We clothe ourselves with Christ. We “put on” Christ (Ephesians 4:24; Colossians 3:10). This means we live a deliberate, conscious lifestyle where Jesus is the Lord of our lives, and all our desires and actions are under His control. We live according to the WILL OF GOD and the WORD OF GOD.
In response to the darkness over the surface of the deep (Genesis 1:2), God spoke, and light came into being. Darkness is the contrast to the light and amplifies the need for light.
Proverbs 4:19 (ESV), “The way of the wicked is like deep darkness; they do not know over what they stumble.”
1 Thessalonians 5:5 (ESV), “For you are all children of light, children of the day. We are not of the night or of the darkness.”
Colossians 1:13 (ESV), “He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son.”
Light Is Good. The light was the first of the Creator’s works. Genesis 1:3 says, “God saw that the light was good.” The Lord God did not abolish darkness at creation. He added light to life. God Is Light, and His light is the antithesis to the evil associated with darkness, the ultimate good, that is, light.
Light symbolizes the Holy God. Light is the revelation of God’s love in Jesus Christ. Jesus declares that he is “the light of the world” (John 8:12). Jesus is the incarnate Word of God, who has come as the light that enlightens all people (John 1:4-14) so that those believing in Him will no longer be in darkness (12:46). Jesus Christ is life-giving light!
John 3:19 says, “Jesus said this is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil.”
In the Light, together.