Scripture readings for the first day of Hanukkah
Hannukah is a celebration for the glorious restoration of the Temple of God in Israel in 165 B.C. when Antiochus Epiphanes attempted to force the Jewish people to worship false gods. By the time that the Lord Jesus Christ began his ministry, Hanukkah was well established as a time of celebration. The Lord Jesus also celebrated this time of thanksgiving as we find in:
And it was at Jerusalem the feast of the dedication, and it was winter. And Jesus walked in the temple in Solomon’s porch. Then came the Jews round about him, and said unto him, How long dost thou make us to doubt? If thou be the Christ, tell us plainly. Jesus answered them, I told you, and ye believed not: the works that I do in my Father’s name, they bear witness of me. But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.
Scripture readings for the first day of Hanukkah are these:
Genesis 37:1-40:23 from the Torah or the First Testament and it covers the account of Joseph being sold into slavery and how God established him or ‘settled’ him, even in the time of his imprisonment and the years of slavery that his brethren forced upon him. The readings from the Torah for this day are called, ‘VaYeshev,’ which means ‘And He settled.’ Even when dire circumstances arise in our lives or persecution comes upon us because of our walk with the Lord Y’shua because of our determination to walk righteously even as He did, we can know in our hearts that God has already ‘settled’ an end for our time of tribulation. It is He that shall restore us.
The second reading is this: Amos 2:6-3:8 which speaks of the enemy who has overtaken the people of God, God Himself shall bring them down even as He has done throughout the annals of history. The swift shall not be able to deliver himself as in:
Amos 2:9b – yet I destroyed his fruit from above, and his roots from beneath.
Which clearly represents the total destruction of any enemy that rises up against the people of God. Even as Antiochus Epiphanes attempted to destroy and subvert the people of God, so God destroyed Him. The final reading for this first day of celebration concludes in:
And the patriarchs, moved with envy, sold Joseph into Egypt: but God was with him, And delivered him out of all his afflictions, and gave him favour and wisdom in the sight of Pharaoh king of Egypt; and he made him governor over Egypt and all his house. Now there came a dearth over all the land of Egypt and Chanaan, and great affliction: and our fathers found no sustenance. But when Jacob heard that there was corn in Egypt, he sent out our fathers first. And at the second time Joseph was made known to his brethren; and Joseph’s kindred was made known unto Pharaoh. Then sent Joseph, and called his father Jacob to him, and all his kindred, threescore and fifteen souls. So Jacob went down into Egypt, and died, he, and our fathers, And were carried over into Sychem, and laid in the sepulchre that Abraham bought for a sum of money of the sons of Emmor the father of Sychem.
…But God was with him, and delivered him out of all his afflictions! Yes and Amen! This is what God our Father and Creator does for those who worship Him and Him only and who choose to live righteously. He delivers, lifts up and restores those who have been brought down through the unrighteousness of others.
So think upon these things as you light your first candle tonight.