Hanukkah – A Pattern for the Church

To most Christians Hanukkah is a mystery, but if we go deeper into its meaning it is far more important to the Church than one can imagine.  In John 10:22-23 it says that Jesus was in Jerusalem at the time of the Feast of Dedication (or Festival of Lights).  Hanukkah means to set apart for a special purpose or to make holy.  If you have never read the story of the origin of Hanukkah it is found in the Maccabees in the Apocrypha. While it is not part of the Protestant Bible this story is very important to Christians especially in these last days.

Alexander the Great, after conquering the known world at that time died and his kingdom was divided into four separate kingdoms.  The Greeks where Hellenizing their kingdom forcing everyone to follow the Grecian ways of life, including idol worship.  But the Jews were not accepting it and continued to live according to their Jewish traditions.  In response to their rebellion Antiochus Epiphanes (or the Illuminated God or God Manifest – for us a type of the Antichrist.) was sent to Israel to put an end to Jewish worship and force the Jews into worshiping the gods of Greece and Rome.  Antiochus promoted a philosophy that all kingdoms should be as one people, everyone living the exactly the same.  To many he was considered to be insane and did many cruel and tortuous things to the Jews and many of the Jews did surrender to the pressures of the world and turned their backs on the ways of God Yehovah.  Antiochus went so far as to corrupt even the priests and leaders of Israel and setup a statue of Zeus in the temple and sacrificed a pig on it.  Such an act desecrated the temple and was called the abomination of desolation.   (1 Mac 1:41).

Do these things sound familiar?  They should because many of these things are happening in our world today and will happen again in even greater ways as we approach the time of Christ’s return.  Jesus mentioned them in Matthew 24:15-16 referring to the prophecies in Daniel.  The book of Daniel was written before the Maccabees and Jesus was pointing to both as a pattern for both the Jews and the Church in the last days.  This is a three part witness to us warning to be prepared.

Even before Antiochus came to Jerusalem, the Grecian empire was pressuring the Jews to abandon the ways of God and adopt the ways of the world, worshiping Greek and Roman gods.  Many fell away and surrendered to the will of the world adopting their gods and celebrating in their festivals and customs.  They gave in to the pressure to accept the abomination of desolation as normal everyday life.  An abomination condemned by God.  Today we are facing the exact same things as kingdoms are rising up proclaiming that we need to be as one people in a one world government and many, even Christians are falling in line with that doctrine.  And the day is coming when we will once again see the abomination of desolation standing in the temple setup by the Antichrist and the Church will be here to see it and all will be forced to accept the mark (or swear their allegiance to the Antichrist).  And those who do, God has promised in his word will be cast into the lake of fire. This abomination must happen before the Rapture and the Church will be here to see it, as God has revealed in his Word and the teachings of this ministry and the book: Tell Them to Prepare – The Final Restoration.  (http://www.richinsight.org/book.html)

In the midst of this falling away incited by Antiochus (the Antichrist) and their own priests (false prophets), there arose a small group, a family of average people who stood against this rebellion of Gods ways and called others into their cause hammering Antiochus’ kingdom until it fell.  In the same way the Church will have a remnant who are committed to the ways to God, not willing to submit to the demands of this world and they will do mighty exploits and show forth the glory of God to the world, saving many from certain destruction.  The Maccabees overcame the rebellion of the people and returned the kingdom to God and in the process rededicating (Hanukkah) the temple and gave birth to the Festival of Lights.  And in this way Hanukkah is even more Christian (the ways of God) than even Christmas, which was born out of pagan celebrations as revealed in the teaching “The Holiday Paradox.” (http://www.richinsight.org/the-holiday-paradox.html)  While many will fall away and be caught up in the ways of this world. There will be a rising up in the midst of turbulent times and those who know their God will do great exploits and display His glory.  They will cast off the ways of this world to pursue with passion the ways of God.  Your job is to decide, which kingdom will you belong to?

Live in Yehovah’s Love!

Richard Billingsley


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