What is the Feast of Dedication?


Clarify Share Report Asked September 23 2014 Mini Anonymous

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Mini Guy Gifford
The Feast of Dedication is what Jews today call Hanukkah, but don't stop reading here by presuming you know what Hanukkah is!

The feast of dedication is only mentioned once in the Bible and is found in John 10:22, where context is absolutely critical. The context is in essence the format of a witness' testimony in court: detailing the answers to who, what, when, where, and how. Why is this important? Because, this is absolutely huge, the start of the passage where Jesus publicly declares His deity (John 10:30), and the Christ/Messiah/Anointed One (John 10:36).

The Feast of Dedication is NOT one of God's seven ordained feasts found in Leviticus 23, which fall under God's mandates "to not add anything to or take anything away" from the commands/teachings/feasts of God (Deuteronomy 4:2 & Deuteronomy 12:32), but rather fall under Jesus condemnation of those things that the priests and teachers added or took away from God's teachings (Mark 7:1-13).

In John 10:22-39 we learn that only the people of Jerusalem, and not all or even most of Israel celebrated the Feast of Dedication / Hanukkah. Additionally, we don't see anyone in the Temple celebrating Hanukkah, because Hanukkah is considered a secular festival and not a sacred festival, and thus was rather celebrated in the Jerusalem synagogues and/or homes.

Thus, although Jesus publicly declared His deity and Messiah-ship during the week of Hanukkah, in the Temple in Jerusalem, since Hanukkah was not celebrated in the Temple, we have no evidence that Jesus celebrated Hanukkah, adding to God's laws, and thus sinning.

But why would adding festivals be so serious a sin that it would be breaking faith with God? Because each of the seven God ordained feasts point directly to the redemptive acts of Jesus the Messiah, who has now fulfilled four of them and will fulfill the three remaining. Any additional feasts detract from the focus God intends for us to have on the Messiah's redemptive fulfilling of the feasts. If there were a feast for every miracle or victory of Israel, as important as the miracle of Hanukkah, listed in the Bible, there would literally be a feast on every day, and the Messiah's times would lose the attention God intends for them.

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