Hanukkah Day 3, 5782/2021

As we think of the third night of Hanukkah, I am reminded of the price it took for the Maccabees to rally the children of Israel to fight against the Greek/Syrian invaders who had taken over their land and forced idolatry upon God’s people. In 168BC Antiochus ruler of Rome invaded Jerusalem. The name Antiochus means, “God Manifest.”

He turned his armies loose to conduct massacre upon Jerusalem. He took an Idol of Jupiter and placed it in the Holy of Holies and sacrificed a pig on the sacred altar. From it’s juices he
desecrated all the furniture of the Holy of Holies. Also, He brought in prostitutes and had an orgies in the Temple and He forced every Jew to conform to all Greek idolatry and costumes.

In 167 BC, Antiochus sent an officer to Modi’in, a city in Northwest Israel. There was an aged priest, Mattathias Maccabee, who had five sons. The Maccabee family headed up the insurgency against Antiochus. In 166 BC Antiochus tried to crush the Maccabees. But Judah, Mattathias’ son, overwhelmed this group with a much smaller army. To stop the uprising Antiochus, in 165 BC, entered Israel with a great army, however, in Emmaus (Luke 24) Judah
surprised Antiochus at night and almost defeated him (I Maccabees 3:43-60, 4:8-11, 19-25). Antiochus then retreated, only to return to invade Israel later. Judah totally defeated him.

Like then and now we are at war, a spiritual war against the principalities, spiritual wickedness, powers, and the rulers of darkness in this culture. 2 Corinthians 10:4-“For the weapons of our warfare are not fleshly but mighty for the pulling down of strongholds.”

Imagine the Maccabees being outnumbered, out spent financially, and no military training. The hundreds who gave their lives for the cause of Elohim and Righteousness. Yet with God on their side, “They were Well Able.” It took three years to fight the good fight of faith to Victory.

As we light the third candle of the Menorah, I am reminded of this one thing, our fight is not with each other, with our culture, or governments. We fight a spiritual battle with spiritual weapons.

They are: faith, prayer, fasting, worship, obedience, rest, and love.

Tonight as you light your Menorah take a few moments to meditate on God’s Victory in your battle(s).

Do we have to celebrate Hanukkah? No, you don’t. It is your choice. But since Yeshua, King Jesus is the fulfillment of this Festival and He celebrated it, I choose to do what Jesus did. Shalom!

Wellspring Israel

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