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When it comes to celebrating Hanukkah at home, it is important to know how to A.C.T. (Apply. Change. Transform.) as you study the spiritual and prophetic significance of the holiday.
To understand the basics of building a spiritual warfare strategy using the Hanukkah story as a tool, click here.
After you review how to prepare by using the teaching principles of A.C.T. and G.R.O.W., it is time to get your Hanukkiah and prepare for Hanukkah at home!
The Hanukkiah | Celebrating Hanukkah at Home
- The Hanukkiah is lit daily and is generally in a window or in a place of public view as a personal declaration of faith and trust.
The traditional Temple menorah has 7 branches representing creation. The 9-branched menorah is exclusive to the celebration of Hanukkah and the miracle of the oil.
Click HERE to discover more about the similarities and differences of each.
- Begin by lighting the middle candle, known as the “Shamash” or Servant candle. Then light an additional candle per night (one the first night, two the second night, and so on) until the Hanukkiah is fully lit.
Get step-by-step instructions for lighting your Hanukkiah HERE.
The Light | Celebrating Hanukkah at Home
- The Servant candle is used to light the other candles of the Hanukkiah. It is symbolic of Messiah. Lighting this candle acknowledges that God is the source of all light, just as it is written in Genesis when Yahweh said, “Let there be light” (see Genesis 1:3)
- Lighting the Hanukkiah is a physical act that serves as a spiritual reminder of the importance of faith and maintaining your spiritual identity.
- We light the Hanukkiah as a reminder that we serve a God of miracles and miraculous provision.
- We light the Hanukkiah candles for 8 nights (significant of new beginnings), having an opportunity to realign our lives with the Judeo-Christian roots. We are a people of faith without compromised culture in our homes.
Lighting the Hanukkiah | Celebrating Hanukkah at Home
Below is a list of the candles (remember the Servant candle is lit first, representing Messiah) and the letter of the Hebrew alphabet associated with it. Each number and Hebrew letter is followed by a brief explanation.
- Aleph א (the first letter in the Hebrew alphabet)
When you light the first candle, you acknowledge that you choose to follow Father God. “Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one!” —Deuteronomy 6:4
- Bet ב (the second letter of the Hebrew alphabet)
When you light the second candle, you acknowledge that you choose to be in covenant agreement and unity with God. The number 2 is symbolic of the covenant (see Ephesians 2:14-22).
- Gimel ג (the third letter of the Hebrew alphabet)
When you light the third candle, you trust the strength and power of the trinity—the three-stranded cord of God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (see Ecclesiastes 4:12).
- Dalet ד (the fourth letter of the Hebrew alphabet)
In Hebrew, dalet is symbolic of a ‘door.’ When you light the fourth candle, decree that the door to your heart opens, allowing the light of God into your life (see John 10:9). Declare, “Shine your light in me and through me, O Lord!”
- He ה (the fifth letter of the Hebrew alphabet)
The number 5 is symbolic of grace. When you light the fifth candle, know that the way forward is only by His grace (see Ephesians 2:8-9).
- Vav ו (the sixth letter of the Hebrew alphabet)
The number 6 represents man. When you light the sixth candle, it is symbolic of reconciling the reality that you are human, created in His image, and in need of God (see Genesis 1:27).
- Zayen ז (the seventh letter of the Hebrew alphabet)
The number 7 represents God’s perfect number or completion. When you light the seventh candle, you acknowledge the only perfection for man is to receive Yeshua, the perfect One, and our righteousness is in Him alone (see Colossians 2:9-10).
- Het ח (the eighth letter of the Hebrew alphabet)
When you light the eighth candle, you celebrate the symbolism of new beginnings. Through the light of Messiah, you are a new creation, and He gives you new seasons and fresh starts (see 2 Corinthians 5:17). Through Him, you are One New Man—one new humanity and one new creation.
Understanding Growth and Blessing | Celebrating Hanukkah at Home
Hosea 4:6 tells us that we are destroyed for a lack of knowledge. Opportunities for growth and blessing are directly tied to understanding. It is important to note that when we do not understand or practice something that is a reflection of God, the truth is not negated. Rather it means that you simply can’t access it.
In other words, this is not about legalism, it is about having the knowledge to access what is already yours.
The Word of God is a full opportunity to put into practice God’s instruction and reap a harvest of blessing.
- Isaiah 58:13-14 promises joy and fulfillment to those who keep the Sabbath.
- Malachi 3:10 promises an open Heaven for those who honor God with their finances.
- Isaiah 58:6-8 shows that taking care of the needs of the poor is key to releasing healing.
Hanukkah is an opportunity for us to reset, rededicate, and choose to fight for the truth for ourselves and His Kingdom.
Each night that we celebrate Hanukkah at home by lighting the candles, we are reminded of the importance of:
- Keeping our temples, which are our bodies, according to 1 Corinthians 6:19, clean and dedicated to God’s purpose. We do this by overseeing what goes in and what comes out. This includes words of repentance and praise.
- Keeping the oil in our spiritual lives full. In other words, be full of the Holy Spirit, as 1 John 2:27 says, “But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you…” We do this by staying in the Word of God and remaining steadfast in our faith. Feed your faith and starve your fears!
- Joining Yeshua in being a light to the world and a city on a hill, according to Matthew 5:14. Like the Hanukkiah in the window, we are to allow our lives to shine publicly.
- Keeping our wicks trimmed and lamps full of untainted oil, just like the five wise virgins in Matthew 25:1-13. The Bridegroom is returning for His bride, even when it feels like He is a long time coming.
Celebrating Hanukkah at Home
Suggested ways to celebrate Hanukkah at home:
- Lighting the Hanukkiah in your homes each night (get more ideas in The Believer’s Guide to Hanukkah).
- Declare the traditional Hanukkah blessing as you light your candles (see below).
- Recite Psalm 30 (a Psalm for the dedication of the Temple).
- Host a Hanukkah meal for family and friends where you recount the Lord’s faithfulness to provide in the past year. This meal can be varied, but foods fried in oil are traditionally served at Hanukkah.
- Play the dreidel game with gelt.
- Give small gifts to one another.
- Share the Hanukkah story with your children, grandchildren, and/or friends.
- Take a spiritual “culture check” to find areas in your life that might need adjustment in the coming year.
- Use this unique 8-day period to join Yeshua in being the light of the world in the darkness (see Matthew 5:14) by doing something kind for others.
The traditional Hanukkah blessing…
.ברוך אתה יי, אלוהינו מלך העולם, אשר קידשנו במצוותיו, וציוונו להדליק נר של חנוכה
Baruch atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech ha’olam, asher kid’shanu b’mitzvotav v’tsivanu l’hadlik ner shel Hanukkah.
Praised are You, our God, Ruler of the universe, who made us holy through Your commandments and commanded us
to kindle the Hanukkah lights.
Traditions can become negative when they become routines that our hearts are not engaged in. However, when our hearts are engaged with positive traditions, they serve as important reminders of what the Lord has done.
They are physical acts that trigger something in our minds and spirits so that we can remember the goodness of God…
- The seas He has parted
- The faithfulness in the midst
- His great love poured out for us
The traditions of Hanukkah remind us that the enemy’s attempt to hijack and infiltrate our identity cannot stand when we call and align with the Lord who is faithful to deliver and provide.
Remembering the God of Miracles When You Celebrate Hanukkah at Home
No matter how you choose to celebrate Hanukkah at home, I would encourage you to take time to thank the God of Miracles for His faithfulness to provide for you. Even when you just had “one day’s worth of oil,” so to speak,
He miraculously stepped in, so that your oil did not run out.
We have all had those moments. It is good practice to stop, reflect, and encourage your heart in the faithfulness and goodness of God. The God who sees, hears, provides—the God of Miracles. This is the God you serve in dedication.