Sunday, October 30, 2016

Hannukah's Second Witness

In I shared many bible verses regarding the Feast of Dedication.  These covered the practices of consecrating the Temple of YHWH and how they pertain to consecrating ourselves also, since we are now the Temple of YHWH, if His Spirit dwells in us.

For me this was enough reason to count the days of Hannukah (hebrew word meaning Dedication) and consecrate my home and family members each year.

But for many it was not.

As Deuteronomy 19:15 says, "on the evidence of two or three witnesses a matter shall be confirmed."  While we have witnesses that a Dedication was observed on the building of the temples, did we have a witness that WE were to observe a Dedication yearly?

For our first and most apparent witness we look at the book of Maccabees.
After the Maccabees battles were over, they cleaned the temple, rebuilt the altar and began the Feast of Dedication. "For eight days they celebrated the rededication of the altar. With great joy they brought burnt offerings and offered fellowship offerings and thank offerings. 57 They decorated the front of the Temple with gold crowns and shields, rebuilt the gates and the priests' rooms and put doors on them. 58 Now that the Jews had removed the shame which the Gentiles had brought, they held a great celebration. 59 Then Judas, his brothers, and the entire community of Israel decreed that the rededication of the altar should be celebrated with a festival of joy and gladness at the same time each year, beginning on the twenty-fifth of the month of Kislev and lasting for eight days." 1 Maccabees 4:56-59

This event occurred around 165 BC.

But in 520 BC YHWH spoke to a prophet named Haggai.

Haggai Prophecying As They Rebuild The Temple 520 BC

Haggai 2:10-23
10 On the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month, in the second year of Darius, the word of the Lord came by Haggai the prophet, saying, 11 “Thus says the Lord of hosts: ‘Now, ask the priests concerning the law, saying, 12 “If one carries holy meat in the fold of his garment, and with the edge he touches bread or stew, wine or oil, or any food, will it become holy?”’”
Then the priests answered and said, “No.”
13 And Haggai said, “If one who is unclean because of a dead body touches any of these, will it be unclean?”
So the priests answered and said, “It shall be unclean.”
14 Then Haggai answered and said, “‘So is this people, and so is this nation before Me,’ says the Lord, ‘and so is every work of their hands; and what they offer there is unclean.
15 ‘And now, carefully consider from this day forward: from before stone was laid upon stone in the temple of the Lord— 16 since those days, when one came to a heap of twenty ephahs, there were but ten; when one came to the wine vat to draw out fifty baths from the press, there were but twenty. 17 I struck you with blight and mildew and hail in all the labors of your hands; yet you did not turn to Me,’ says the Lord. 18 ‘Consider now from this day forward, from the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month, from the day that the foundation of the Lord’s temple was laid—consider it: 19 Is the seed still in the barn? As yet the vine, the fig tree, the pomegranate, and the olive tree have not yielded fruit. But from this day I will bless you.’
20 And again the word of the Lord came to Haggai on the twenty-fourth day of the month, saying, 21 “Speak to Zerubbabel, governor of Judah, saying:
‘I will shake heaven and earth.
22 I will overthrow the throne of kingdoms;
I will destroy the strength of the Gentile kingdoms.
I will overthrow the chariots
And those who ride in them;
The horses and their riders shall come down,
Every one by the sword of his brother.
23 ‘In that day,’ says the Lord of hosts, ‘I will take you, Zerubbabel My servant, the son of Shealtiel,’ says the Lord, ‘and will make you like a signet ring; for I have chosen you,’ says the Lord of hosts.”

Couldn't verses 20-23 be direct prophecy about the Maccabees revolutionary war and victory?  Given directly to the tribe of Judah, who would face this trial!

Couldn't verses 10-19 be direct prophecy about our need to stop and CONSIDER the cleanliness of our souls before YHWH?  Wouldn't that mean, On THIS DAY, the twentyfourth day of the ninth month, begin your observation of a CONSECRATION and DEDICATION to YHWH?  That evening is when we are told to start our CELEBRATION of the Feast of Dedication.

The Jews of his day HEARD and HEEDED Haggai's words from YHWH.  And what blessings they were given for it. <3

Haggai 2:19 ".... From this day I will bless you."
Haggai 2:23 "In that day ....will make you a signet ring; for I have chosen you."

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