Hello John and Doves,
Hanukkah is a rabbinic holiday. Rabbinic holidays are the second major category of Jewish holidays. They were created, mandated by the rabbis since arriving in the Promised Land.
Hanukkah (Chanukah) is the most well-known of the rabbinic holidays. It is also called the Festival of Lights and the Feast of Dedication. The eve of Hanukkah is the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month, so Hanukkah begins on the evening of the twenty-fourth day of the month of Kislev. The day of Hanukkah is the twenty-fifth day of Kislev.
The only reference to Hanukkah in the New Testament is in John 10 where Jesus walked in the Temple.
John 10:22: Now it was the Feast of Dedication in Jerusalem, and it was winter. And Jesus walked in the Temple, in Solomon's Porch.
The Jews in Jesus' day were very much aware of what happened on Hanukkah, what happened in the Temple with King Antiochus IV and what happened in the revolt against him.
Antiochus placed idols in the Temple, sacrificed a pig upon the altar and took the name of 'God manifested', Epiphanes. Changing his name to Antiochus IV Epiphanes. The Jews knew Antiochus was 'just a man' and that he wasn't god. This was done on the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month.
The High Priest and his 5 sons led an army of Jewish dissidents to revolt against the Seleucid Dynasty headed by King Antiochus IV. Their revolt was successful and the Seleucid army was defeated and run out of Jerusalem on the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month. Exactly three years after Antiochus declared himself god.
Jews that opposed Jesus placed themselves around Him on Solomon's Porch that day very and deliberately demanded of Jesus "If you are THE MESSIAH, tell us plainly? So they were now setting Jesus up to declare Himself as 'God manifested' as Antiochus had done. They could then turn the people against Him in a revolt and effectively destroy His ministry/kingdom.
John 10:25-29: Jesus answered them, "I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in my Father's name, these testify about me but you do not believe, because you are not of My sheep. My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish. No one can snatch them out of My Hand. My Father, who have given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father's hand."
And then Jesus really hit it home: "I am my Father are one." John 10:30
And with that "the Jews again picked up rocks to stone him". John 10:31
It is written that they again picked up rocks. This implies they had already picked up rocks before they asked Him to tell them who He was. They knew what His answer would be; they were ready to attack Him, they even said they weren't stoning Him for any good work, "but for blasphemy! You are just a man, and here you are claiming to be God!" John 10:33. At the Temple, on the Feast of Dedication! They'd seen this before.
Jesus responded to them "How can you say to the one whom the Father has consecrated and sent into the world, 'You're blaspheming,' because I said, 'I'm the Son of God'? John 10:36
After this they tried to seize Jesus, but He escaped from them.
It was on this day, Hanukkah, that Jesus declared Himself the Messiah, the Son of God. Jesus fulfilled the Feast of Dedication, on the twenty-fifth of Kislev.
When Jesus spoke of His sheep and that no one could snatch them from His hand - 'snatched' in Greek ἁρπάζειν (harpazein) means "to seize, snatch, take by force, to pluck". This is the same word used in several other verses. In 2 Corinthians 12:4 when Paul was caught up into Paradise; in 1 Thessalonians 4:17 when Paul was describing the Rapture 'will be caught up together'; in Acts 8:39 when the Lord 'caught away' Philip; and in Revelation 12:4 and the woman's child was 'caught up' to God.
Could the use of this word to 'seize, snatch, take by force' In John 10 be a reference to the Rapture? "..we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds.." 1 Thessalonians 4:17 Could the reference of His voice to call His sheep be a reference to "For the Lord Himself will descent from heaven with a loud command.."? 1 Thessalonians 4:16
Jesus talked about His sheep being already in His hand and that He gives them eternal life. He said this on Hanukkah. Since this happened on the twenty-fifth day of Kislev (Hanukkah), might this be a veiled reference to the Rapture taking place on the twenty-fourth day of Kislev (the Eve of Hanukkah)? (See my other letters today about the Eve of Hanukkah)
"Was Christ saying that the Rapture will have taken place and that He will have already snatched His believers from the Earth, making it impossible to snatch them back again? This seems like a viable conclusion and fits very nicely with the links between the day before Hanukkah and the prophecies about it."http://www.duncanlong.com/christian/gog.html
The Rapture, Gog, and Hanukkah Puzzle: Putting It All Together
Will this Hanukkah season be just another 'Festival of Lights' or will something amazing happen again?
Pray for the peace of Jerusalem!
(The blowing of the trumpet in Jewish tradition is linked to the raising of the dead to life and sounding the alarm for battle. So the 'last trump' may be for the 'raising of the dead to life' and not associated with a Feast Day, if one is expecting the Rapture to occur on a Feast Day.)