Chanukkah light

Yeshua — His Light is the Way Forward

5 December 2023

6.3 MINS

Nine days after the 7th of October attack on Israel by Hamas, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated – the fight with ‘Nazi’ Hamas is a war between light and darkness.

That was the headline, and this is his full quote:

“A war between forces of light and forces of darkness, between humanity and animalism.”

This is no ordinary war, and we are living in no ordinary time. It feels as though we have crossed over into a new day, a new season and even a new era.

A good contingent of intercessors from Canberra Declaration, the nation of Australia, the region of Oceania, as well as representatives from 40 nations, were present in Perth, Western Australia for the World Prayer Assembly, which ended on the 6th of October. At this event, we heard Rick Ridings, founder of Succat Hallel, Jerusalem, share similar sentiments to those of Prime Minister Netanyahu.  Rick Ridings said that this is not a political war but a spiritual war and that it will be won in the heavenlies.

Now is the time to pray for Israel like never before, as she is threatened from within and without.

Historical Parallel

With this Hamas war in mind, I am reminded of the battle that Israel endured with Antiochus IV Epiphanes (Greek: “God Manifest”), who was conquering nations and hellenising them. It was the year 167 BC when Jason (the brother of Onias III, High Priest of Jerusalem) also took control of Jerusalem except for the citadel.

Antiochos returned from Egypt in 167 BC and enforced his hellenising policies. He suppressed Judaism, and a revolt against the Greeks rose up. Priest Mattathias was joined by his five sons, Judah, Yohanan, Simon, Eleazar and Jonathan. This team chose the scripture in Exodus 15:11, “Who is like You, Lord, among the mighty?” (Mi chamocha b’elim Adonai). From these words in scripture, the acronym developed into Maccabees.

The Maccabees fought for three years to regain their territory and finally ended up at the Temple Mount.

Now Antiochus was not satisfied either with his unexpected taking the city (Jerusalem), or with its pillage, or with the great slaughter he had made there; but being overcome with his violent passions, and remembering what he had suffered during the siege, he compelled the Jews to dissolve the laws of their country, and to keep their infants uncircumcised, and to sacrifice swine’s flesh upon the altar; against which they all opposed themselves, and the most approved among them were put to death. — Flavius Josephus, The War of the Jews, Book 1.1 §2

Antiochus had built an altar to Zeus right on top of the altar of burnt offerings. He even sacrificed a pig in December 167 BC. The quote above talks about a “great slaughter”, and this is what we saw on the 7th of October, 2023.

The Maccabees were able to tear down the altar of Zeus and rededicate the Temple in 164 BC. It then became time for the Temple to be cleansed and rededicated. After the sacrifice, the golden menorah was lit. They had found only enough sacred oil for one day’s light, but by the grace of God, this oil lasted for eight days, which was the required time for purification. This was the origin of the Feast of Dedication that Yeshua celebrated in John 10:22 —

And it was at Jerusalem the feast of the dedication, and it was winter. (KJV)

It was the Feast of Hanukkah at Yerushalayim. (HNV)

And the dedication in Jerusalem came, and it was winter. (YLT)

As we ponder the victory of the Maccabees over Antiochus Epiphanes and the cleansing of the temple, what is the Lord saying to us in this Chanukkah season for Israel?

Under Attack

Antiochus Epiphanes persecuted the Jews for their beliefs. One can read more in the apocryphal books of Maccabees and the “Scroll of Antiochus”.

Antiochus IV is remembered as a major villain and persecutor in the Jewish traditions associated with Hanukkah, including the books of Maccabees and the “Scroll of Antiochus”.

When these happenings were reported to the king, he thought that Judea was in revolt. Raging like a wild animal, he set out from Egypt and took Jerusalem by storm. He ordered his soldiers to cut down without mercy those whom they met and to slay those who took refuge in their houses. There was a massacre of young and old, a killing of women and children, a slaughter of virgins and infants. In the space of three days, eighty thousand were lost, forty thousand meeting a violent death, and the same number being sold into slavery.

— 2 Maccabees 5:11–14

This is what the slaughter of Antiochus looked like, which is not dissimilar to the Hamas attack on the 7th of October.

These are my previous articles on Chanukkah if you wish to read more background on this festival.

Each year, the Jewish community celebrates Chanukkah, and they remember what happened in their Temple.

The rabbis proclaimed that this miracle of the oil should be an annual festival. The lighting of the Chanukkah menorah (Chanukkiah) has continued since then.

Understanding His Ways

Some of us understand that when the Lord is about to move in a significant way, often the enemy will attack to get believers off course. One term that is used regarding this is “threshold attack”. This attack of the enemy tries to prevent a person or a nation from entering into God’s purposes.

Rick Ridings, at the World Prayer Assembly in Perth, October 2023, shared with us how World War I prevented young men who were keen to be missionaries from doing so because of the outbreak of World War I.

Many of us believe that we are on the verge of seeing the greatest harvest of souls of all time. We are experiencing the beginnings of a mighty move of God.  Rick Ridings encouraged us to pray that there will be no World War III at this time, and that our Father’s purposes will be fulfilled.

Israel is also on the doorstep of the Lord’s restoration of His people, not just to the land but to His heart. Let us also pray that the enemy will not prevent Israel from entering into God’s purposes at this time.

Closing Thoughts

In October, the Lord said to me:

Behold Me, for I hold the victory in My hands.

As I was praying for Israel and the Hamas War, the Lord showed me a vision of the flag of Israel with a round hole in the middle of the Star of David, in the centre of the flag. As I pondered this vision, it spoke to me that the hole is not just the grieving of His people, but an emptiness in the spirits of His people – many are empty of God. Some of us would say it is like a God-shaped hole that needs to be filled. It is time for God, through Yeshua, to be at the centre of Israel.

Israel flag - need Jesus' light

The real victory will not just be when Israel wins the war over Hamas, but Israel’s ultimate restoration will be when the hole in the heart of the nation is filled with Yeshua, and they come into Father’s greater purposes for the nation, a full restoration of all of the promises.

Yeshua is the true Chanukkah light, not just for a day, or eight days, but for eternity.

Light comes when oil is there.  There needs to be oil in the lamp for the light to work.

Abba Elohim (Father God), we pray that in this season, You will move in Israel through the Holy Spirit. May the oil of Your Spirit visit the LAND in an unprecedented way to bring forth YESHUA, so that Your people may see that He is the LIGHT OF THE WORLD. Ba Shem Yeshua (in the name of Jesus).

There is or was a kind of defilement, because of what Hamas did to Israel on the 7th of October. By the grace of God, may Israel be rededicated to the Lord in this season – a season of purification, cleansing, not in an Old Testament way but a John 3:7 way:

It is necessary for you to be born again, born anew. (OJB)

In fact, the light, His light, needs to come back to Israel. The principle in scripture of the death, burial and resurrection still holds true today. The Lord moved even through the Holocaust to restore them to the LAND and now He is moving to restore them to His heart.

The Lord also told me:

Israel will never be the same again.

Many of us have had “never again” moments. Israel is in one of these moments right now. Let us love Father’s Beloved Chosen People, support them with prayer, with finance and with attending rallies.  They are not alone, but we need to share with them so that they know in a meaningful way that we are standing with them.

May the Lord open up to you opportunities to be one with Father’s Beloved Chosen People, and at the right time, we will know what it means to be “One New Man”.

As we review what happened at the time of the Chanukkah miracle, that the Temple was rededicated to the Lord’s service, sanctifying it by the sacrifice, the lamps, and the oil, may Israel also be rededicated to the Lord in this season. May Israel see the enemy defeated by His might, and may His people rededicate their hearts and the nation to the Lord in a deeper way than ever before.

These are the times that are upon us. We will move forward by His light and His grace. Amein.


Photos by cottonbro studio and Leon Natan.

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  1. Jim Twelves 5 December 2023 at 9:22 am - Reply

    Nel, thank you so much for this piece. A wonderful history lesson and lesson of faith too.
    My reading to day was 2 Chronicles 27 & 28. Note particularly ch 28: 9- 15. It seems to me that God’s people have always tended to fall away and God always come to restore them. I agree from my heart that this war will be won in the heavens in prayer and intersession. My pray is that ‘the Church of Jesus Christ’ will humble herself and pray for the peace of Jerusalem.

  2. Stephen Lewin 5 December 2023 at 12:14 pm - Reply

    Thank you Nel …Amen the True Light is the Way forward .
    .Wonderful article

  3. Linda Wilsdon 5 December 2023 at 8:22 pm - Reply

    Dear Nel….wonderful article and loved the beautiful little video at the end….Thank you

  4. Ian MONCRIEFF 5 December 2023 at 8:40 pm - Reply

    Thanks for shedding light on this wonderful celebration of God’s provision for his treasured possession. He will do it again.

  5. Marlane Guy 7 December 2023 at 8:03 pm - Reply

    Excellent article Nel, which has illuminated this Channukah festival of lights. Yes, Jesus/Jeshua is the Light of the world. Well researched! (in an aside Jim Twelves was Gordon’s Geography teacher in England)

    • Jim Twelves 24 December 2023 at 5:42 pm - Reply

      Marlane, so good to see you on the Daily Declaration!
      ‘Many of us have had “never again” moments. Israel is in one of these moments right now. Let us love Father’s Beloved Chosen People, support them with prayer, with finance and with attending rallies. They are not alone, but we need to share with them so that they know in a meaningful way that we are standing with them.’
      Nel, thank you for your call to stand up and to stand with the Jews at this time.

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