At that time the Feast of Dedication took place at Jerusalem. It was winter, and Yeshua was walking in the temple, in the colonnade of Solomon.
Hanukkah means “dedication.” The name comes from the story, in which the Maccabees rededicated the Temple, purifying it after the Syrians and the Jewish priests who were their accomplices defiled it with swine and idols. How many readers of John have been completely unaware that Hanukkah shows up in the Gospel?
I wasn’t in Jerusalem for this snowstorm in 2015 (pictured above). Maybe I will get lucky this December, though. I will be there December 17-28, 2017, and maybe you will too.
We will stand in the places and together experience the reality of events long ago that still give meaning to our lives today. We understand at a higher level when we experience something for ourselves.
I did get to experience snow in the land once, I think it was January 2013. I was in Galilee. The main thing I remember about that was we had to skip the Golan Heights that year. Too many Israelis were heading up to the Golan to go skiing. The traffic was too much for our tour schedule to absorb. But by the time we got to Jerusalem, the snow was gone.
I posted a snowy picture though because no doubt, like me, you are feeling that holiday spirit right now, this season of Hanukkah, Christmas, and New Years. Wouldn’t it be amazing to spend the last few days of Hanukkah in Jerusalem? To be in the land at Christmas in 2017?
We’ll talk about how things really were in those days. We’ll experience in the way you only can by being there the news of a different kind of king. His advent did not start a new religion. News of his birth made a ripple but seems to have been completely forgotten, a brief story that looked like nothing of importance at all.
Even his life and career thirty years later seemed unimportant. His doings were forgettable. His alleged royalty was ignorable. That is, he could be forgotten and ignored by people who were either unaware or apathetic about signs of his greatness. Since those signs were unexpected and contrary to normal beliefs, he became the minority messiah, the silent king, the absent but present lord.
Some of us don’t find him forgettable. We are just learning the true significance of his identity, sayings, and accomplishments. Like a snowy day in Jerusalem, a rather uncommon event, we want to have uncommon adventures in getting to know him.
Interested in being part of the trip? Email me for pricing and information or to reserve your spot. Derek at TheHebrewNerd dot com.