We study a Hebrew book-written by Hebrews; we serve a Hebrew Lord-who had Hebrew disciples; we desire to follow the first century church-which was first predominately Hebrew; and through Christ, we are grafted into a Hebrew family! It makes sense to study the Hebrew culture.
To fully comprehend our Christian faith, we should know about this fascinating heritage.
This is a refreshing, new, exciting way to view the Bible! Much of the Bible is mysterious to most Americans. The perplexing phrases, puzzling actions, the sometimes difficult-to-understand words of Jesus, unconventional holidays, and parables are only understood with an awareness of the Hebrew culture.
Celebrating the feasts is not works nor a way to earn a way to heaven. We are obeying Deuteronomy 6 teaching our children God’s ways.
Hanukkah is not one of the seven God appointed Feast, it is a Jewish appointed feast to remember a miracle. Jesus observed Hanukkah.
How to Celebrate Hanukkah
If you decide to celebrate Hanukkah in your home you’ll need a menorah, available here (proceeds go to support Israeli families!)
Beautiful multi-colored Israeli-made candles are available for those who light menorahs. Any library or bookstore should have a good selection of illustrated books telling the story of Hanukkah for children.
Have festive meals for the eight days, say silent prayer three times a day and each night while lighting the menorah, talk to your children about Jesus being the light.
- Blessed are you, Lord our God, King of the universe, who has sanctified us by His commandments, and has commanded us to kindle the lights of Chanukah.
- Blessed are you, Lord our God, King of the universe, who wrought miracles for our fathers in days of old, at this season.
- The following blessing is said only on the first evening (or the first time one kindles the lights this Chanukah):Blessed are you, Lord our God, King of the universe, who has kept us alive, and has preserved us, and enabled us to reach this season.
After Kindling the Lights the Hallalu is Recited.
“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 kohanim. 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.”
Hanukkah is not considered sacred, so all work is allowed during the eight-day period except for the weekly Sabbath.
Gift giving on each of the eight nights is an American tradition that probably came from the pressures American Jews faced from their children missing Christmas. If you’d like to give a small gift each night, or a large gift the first or last night of Hanukkah, it is up to your family. Create your own family tradition.
Each night read verses about the light, the commentary, and talk of the different symbolism of Jesus.