| 12-12-2009, 08:07 PM || #52 |
Join Date: May 2009
| | Re: HOLIDAY NEWS: Menorahs Due to Light Up for Hanukkah
Hanukkah (Meaning "To Dedicate") is also known as "The Festival of Lights" and is an eight-day
Jewish holiday commemorating the re-dedication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem.
The Temple in Jerusalem or "Holy Temple" or "House of the Holy", refers to a series of structures
located on the Temple Mount in the old city of Jerusalem.
The "Mount" refers to Mount Moriah, and is considered to be the holiest site in Judaism. It is believed that this mount was where God gathered the dust he used to create the first man,
In 167 BC, The Holy Temple was desecrated when King Antiochus of Syria invaded and outlawed
Jewish religious rites and traditions. He forced the worship of Zeus (God of the sky and thunder
from Greek mythology) at the temple. Many Jews were killed for refusing to worship Zeus.
In 164 BCE, the Maccabees (a Jewish rebel army) liberated the site, reasserting the Jewish
religion. The Temple was purified but there was only enough consecrated olive oil to fuel the
eternal flame in the Temple for one day. Miraculously, the oil burned for eight days.
Today, Jews commemorate the event by lighting the eight candles one day at a time. An extra
candle is also lit each night for the purpose of lighting the others, which is why the menorah
contains 9 candleholders.
Hanukkah is celebrated by a series of rituals that are performed every day throughout the 8-day
holiday. Some are family-based and others are communal. There are special additions to the daily
prayer service, and a section is added to the blessing after meals.
Today, most Jewish people go to work as usual, but may leave early in order to be home to
kindle the lights at nightfall. In Israel schools close from the second day for the whole week of
Hanukkah. Many families exchange gifts each night, and fried foods (another reference to the oil)
For those of us who are not Jewish, but are Christian believers, we are reminded to bless the Jewish people in our own prayers.
And I will bless them that bless thee, (the Jewish people) and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed (through the birth of Jesus) Genesis 12:3
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