To all celebrating Hanukkah,
The Warmth of Joy,
Glow of Prosperity,
Sparkle of Happiness.
May You Be Blessed With All These and More.
Fox News by Rabbi Tuly Weisz
This year, Jews around the world will celebrate Hanukkah from Sunday at sundown until Dec. 10 at sundown. While the holiday is widely known as the Festival of Lights, it is really the Festival of Miracles. During these eight days, we acknowledge God’s supernatural role in our lives and in the world.
Many people assume that the gift-giving holidays of Hanukkah and Christmas are similar. True, Hanukkah starts on the 25th of the Hebrew month of Kislev and Christmas on the 25th of December, but the similarities between these two holidays start and end there.
While Christmas marks the birth of Jesus, Hanukkah commemorates the victory of the Maccabees over the Greeks and the rededication of the holy Temple in Jerusalem.
To appreciate Hanukkah, a little history is in order:
When King Antiochus IV of Greece reigned over Jerusalem (215 to 174 BCE) he was brutal and barbarous. To unify his empire, he forced the people to renounce their religions and abandon their cultures.
Specifically, the king sought to eradicate anything having to do with the Jewish faith. Shabbat observance, Torah study and keeping kosher were forbidden under penalty of death. The wicked king even removed the Jewish high priest from his post and defiled the holy Temple with Greek idols[…]
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