Chanukkah and Christmas are One

By Asher Intrater

Christmas and Chanukkah are One

Neither Christmas or Chanukkah are appointed feasts commanded in the Torah, yet they are central to the messages of both Judaism and Christianity.

Christmas and Chanukkah have parallel themes.

The birth of Yeshua, according to Scriptures, seems to be during Sukkot – Tabernacles.

Zechariah, the father of John Yohanan, served as Temple Priest in the watch of Abijah (Luke 1:5), which is in the fourth month (I Chronicles 24:10), six months before the annunciation and conception of Miriam – Mary (Luke 1:36). In summary: Zechariah’s vision and Elizabeth’s conception at end of 4th month; Mary’s visitation and conception at end of 10th month; Yeshua’s birth in 7th month.]

If Yeshua was born during Tabernacles; then He was conceived during Chanukkah. The light came into the world at the supernatural virgin conception by Miriam. Jews light the candles of Chanukah in the same season that Christians are celebrating Christmas. It is the same light.

(Christmas may be more likely the time of Yeshua’s conception, not His birth. The connection between Christmas and Channukah harmonizes the narratives of Judaism and Christianity: dedication of Temple, coming of Messiah, light of Christ.)

Chanukkah is called the feast of Dedication in John’s gospel (10:22). It lasts eight days. Why? The dedication of the Temple of Solomon lasted eight days during the feast of Tabernacles (II Chronicles 7:9). The Temple dedication is an eight-day ceremony.

The Maccabean dedication was the same number of days but not the same month.

Yeshua’s light came into the world at Miriam’s conception during Channukah. The light is the conception; the body at birth is the tabernacle.

Channukah was a later celebration of the earlier Sukkot dedication of the Temple. The original Temple dedication was at Tabernacles. The Maccabean dedication was at Channukah. The two dates provide an opportunity to celebrate the conception and birth separately.

The Temple Menorah has 7 lights. The Channukah Menorah has 9 candles: 8 for each of the 8 days of dedication, and the 9th being the shamash-servant candle that lights the others.

The Lampstand is a symbol of the people of God: first the people of Israel, then multiplied through the global Church ekklesia (Exodus 25:31; Zechariah 4:2; Revelation 1:12-13, 20).

Yeshua is the heavenly priest who lights the Lampstand; He is the shamash-servant of Channukah who lights the other candles.

Yeshua is the light that came into the world. However, the light doesn’t just come into the world. The light has a continuing battle to overcome the darkness. The fight of light against darkness is another way in which Channukah and Christmas are connected.

The Maccabees were fighting for a Jewish state against the evil empire at that time. It was a fight of light against darkness. Of Israel against the pagan nations. This has past, present and future meaning.

Today, our soldiers in the field see themselves as modern day Maccabees. They are fighting on behalf of the rest of the nations of the world; fighting for good against evil; light against darkness. This is not a war against Gaza but against global murderous Jihadist extremism.

The prophecies of the end times describe a battle in which all the nations of the world attack Israel. At the very end, Yeshua intervenes, leading the armies of heaven. He destroys all those nations that attacked Jerusalem, and sets up the Messianic kingdom on earth, with Jerusalem as its capital.

Yeshua came the first time as a babe; the second time will be as a general. He is the prince of peace and the commander of the armies. He is the lamb of God, slain for the sins of mankind. He is the lion of the tribe of Judah, roaring in battle.

At this season, we join our hope together for victory of light over darkness.

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