I love the symbols of Judaism because they are powerfully sensory and serve to help us understand spiritual concepts. I've read that children most effectively when they use all of their senses. Chanukkah (and all of the Feasts and Festivals really) are rich in sensory learning:
Placing and lighting the candles - the sense of touch
The burning lights - the sense of sight and smell
The prayers and songs - the sense of sound
The chocolate gelt - the sense of taste
And last, playing dreidyl - teaches Hebrew!!!
Hanukkah teaches several spiritual lessons other than the history of the rededication of the Holy Temple by the Maccabees. My post Yeshua is the Light of Chanukkah gives that history and my post Christmas - Unplugged tells how I celebrate the holidays together.
The symbolism of the Hanukkah celebration reminds us to yearly rededicate ourselves to be vessals for the holy oil of the Spirit. We are reminded to be set apart from the world, unique, different so as to be remarkable to others. The bright and shining light of the candles reminds us to bring light (truth) to the world.
The holy oil required for the Hanukkah menorah reminds us that we are to be holy. G-d really, really does want us to obey Him. Love and obedience are hallmarks of the believer. We are to love G-d and others. are to obey G-d, and share His teachings with others. The scriptures say:
Mercy and truth are met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other.
Hashem required that the oil in the menorah be holy. There was only enough oil for the light to burn for one day. It would take seven days to purify more oil. Hashem performed a miracle by making that small amount of oil last for seven more days. This miracle teaches us that depending on His power, we can meet the requirements of his commandments for purity and holiness. His power can accomplish what He requires. The Maccabees committed what they had to Hashem, and He did the rest.
The lessons and the joy of Hanukkah are for our good and for our blessings. It is a holiday and a celebration that teaches us about, and draws us closer to G-d. A much better lesson than Santa Claus (a lie told to children), don't you think? Holiness and dedication to Hashem and His ways are the way to happiness and blessings. That truth is symbolized by the Tree of Life, another spiritual lesson of Judaism. But that is a lesson for another day.
I hope you will take the time to be still and listen to this song about Yeshua - the Light Of The World and worship Him.
Learn how we combine Chanukah wtih a celebration of Yeshua's birth: Christmas Unplugged
I'm sharing over at Spiritual Sundays
and over at