Chanukah remembers a great miracle that took place in Jerusalem. After the desecration of the Temple in the second century B.C.E, the priests could only find one day’s worth of oil that had not also been defiled. According to legend that oil burned for eight days in the Temple lampstand the full length of time it took to purify more oil. On each of the eight nights of Chanukah, we light candles representing those eight days.
On this first night of Chanukah, we place one candle in the far right holder of the Chanukiah. The Servant Candle is set apart from the other Chanukah candles. We light it first and then use it to light the nightly Chanukah candles. The Servant Candle gives its light to the others. Messianic Judaism reflects on Yeshua (Jesus), our Servant Messiah, who is set apart among men, high above all else. He came to give us His light and life.
As the candles are lit each night of Chanukah, Jewish people around the world recite two Chanukah blessings. On the first night, a third blessing is included. Messianic Jewish people have adapted these blessings to include Yeshua who is the Light of the World.
We’ve also included some verses from the Tanakh (Old Testament) and the Brit Hadashah (New Testament) that bring together a celebration of Chanukah with the life we have found in the Light of the World, Yeshua. We recite Chanukah blessings and celebrate both Chanukah’s miracle of light and the Light of the World, Yeshua.
Messianic Jewish Chanukah Blessings – 1st Night
Blessed are You, LORD, our God, king of the universe, who has sanctified us by His commandments and has given us Yeshua the Messiah, the light of the world.
Blessed are You, LORD, our God, king of the universe, who has performed miracles for our ancestors in those days at this time.
Blessed are You, LORD, our God, Kind of the universe, who has kept us alive, sustained us, and enabled us to reach this season.
Yeshua, the Light of the World
“Yeshua spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. The one who follows Me will no longer walk in darkness but will have the light of life” (John 8:12 TLV).
“As light I have come into the world so that everyone who trusts in Me should not remain in darkness” (John 12:46 TLV).
“…so that you may proclaim the praises of the One who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light” (1 Peter 2:9 TLV).
Yeshua, You performed a miracle of light so many years ago in Israel’s history, but You also performed a miracle of light in our lives by rescuing us from the darkness of life without You. You have called us to walk with You in Your light, and it is marvelous! Thank You for loving us so much that You would die in our place to bring us into fellowship with You. May we never lose our sense of amazement and deep gratitude for what You have done for us through Your death and resurrection.
For the history of Chanukah, visit our recent post, “A Great Miracle Happened There”.
For more information about Chanukah, click here.
To learn more about the history of Israel, the Feasts of Israel, Messianic Judaism, and read testimonies of Jews who believe in Jesus, visit our website.