A Season of Dedication – Hanukkah

For most of us as Christians Hanukkah is an unfamiliar Jewish tradition. Yet when we understand the history of what happened in Jerusalem about 160 years before Jesus’ birth, and that Hanukkah literally means dedication, our perspective changes. Just as the Temple in Jerusalem was cleansed and rededicated to the worship of the LORD, so too we as the living dwelling place of God can dedicate ourselves afresh to following Christ.

  • At that time the Feast of Dedication took place at Jerusalem. It was winter, and Jesus was walking in the temple, in the colonnade of Solomon. (John 10: 22-23 ESV)

Here in John’s gospel we find the only mention of Hanukkah, the Feast of Dedication. It is during this annual festival that Jesus makes yet another clear declaration of His divinity, “I and the Father are one” (v. 30). The Jews (i.e. the religious leaders) wanted to stone Jesus because they thought He spoke blaspheme as a mere man claiming to be God. Jesus went on to tell them that the works He had done proved that what He said was true; “the Father is in me and I am in the Father” (v. 38).

LORD, give us wisdom to understand. Just as Jesus walked through the actual Temple in Jerusalem, may we see that He now walks among us; He is the one like a son of man “in the midst of the lampstands” (Rev. 1:13).

The Jews still tried to arrest Jesus, but He escaped their hands and returned to the Jordan where John the Baptist had first come baptizing in water. Many who had heard Jesus at the Temple found Him there saying among themselves, Continue reading “A Season of Dedication – Hanukkah”