So we, being many, are one body in Christ,
and every one members one of another.
The Dedication of the Altar is the history of the Israelites when the Greeks defiled the temple, by offerings swine’s flesh upon the altar of the Lord. Antiochus surnamed Epiphanes by his policy would destroy many Israelites that refused to follow the way of the Greeks. Many Israelites would perish for keeping the sabbath day, not eating pork or unclean meats, circumcising male children, and for just possessing the law (Bible) in their home. This was foretold by the prophet Daniel read Daniel the 8th chapter. The God of Israel sent the Israelites a mighty deliverer in Judas Maccabeus . Judas Maccabeus and his brethren by the hand of the Lord defeated Antiochus and dedicated the temple and altar to the lord again. It is time to remember the mighty acts that the Lord has performed for Israel and the saints of the Lord who fought and died for the Laws of the God of Israel.
Every year in the 9th month of the lunar calendar on the 25th day we celebrate The Dedication of the Altar for 8 days with feasting and gladness. We celebrate these days as the feast of Tabernacles because just as the Israelites wandered in the wilderness Judas and the righteous Israelites wandered in mountains and caves during those dark times. We observe the first day as a Sabbath and the last day as a sabbath (Lev 23:34-36). On these days we gather, fellowship, give gifts, and read the Bible concerning the Mighty works of the Lord and his saints that executed his word.
I Maccabees 4:59 Moreover Judas and his brethren with the whole congregation of Israel ordained, that the days of the dedication of the altar should be kept in their season from year to year by the space of eight days, from the five and twentieth day of the month Casleu, with mirth and gladness.
2 Maccabees 1:18 Therefore whereas we are now purposed to keep the purification of the temple upon the five and twentieth day of the month Casleu, we thought it necessary to certify you thereof, that ye also might keep it, as the feast of the tabernacles, and of the fire, which was given us when Neemias offered sacrifice, after that he had builded the temple and the altar.
John 10:22 And it was at Jerusalem the feast of the dedication, and it was winter. 23 And Jesus walked in the temple in Solomon’s porch.
Scriptures Concerning the Feast of the Dedication of the Altar
From the Apocrypha I Maccabees 1, 4, II Maccabees 10:1-9
I Maccabees 1:1 And it happened, after that Alexander son of Philip, the Macedonian, who came out of the land of Chettiim, had smitten Darius king of the Persians and Medes, that he reigned in his stead, the first over Greece,
Daniel 8:20-21 And the rough goat is the king of Grecia: and the great horn that is between his eyes is the first king.
I Maccabees 1:2-6 And made many wars, and won many strong holds, and slew the kings of the earth, 3 And went through to the ends of the earth, and took spoils of many nations, insomuch that the earth was quiet before him; whereupon he was exalted and his heart was lifted up. 4 And he gathered a mighty strong host and ruled over countries, and nations, and kings, who became tributaries unto him. 5 And after these things he fell sick, and perceived that he should die. 6 Wherefore he called his servants, such as were honourable, and had been brought up with him from his youth, and parted his kingdom among them, while he was yet alive.
Daniel 8:22 Now that being broken, whereas four stood up for it, four kingdoms shall stand up out of the nation, but not in his power.
Alexander’s Kingdom Divided
|Four Generals||Portion of Kingdom|
|1.||Seleucus||Syria and Babylon|
I Maccabees 1:7-14 So Alexander reigned twelve years, and then died. 8 And his servants bare rule every one in his place. 9 And after his death they all put crowns upon themselves; so did their sons after them many years: and evils were multiplied in the earth.10 And there came out of them a wicked root Antiochus surnamed Epiphanes, son of Antiochus the king, who had been an hostage at Rome, and he reigned in the hundred and thirty and seventh year of the kingdom of the Greeks. 11 In those days went there out of Israel wicked men, who persuaded many, saying, Let us go and make a covenant with the heathen that are round about us: for since we departed from them we have had much sorrow.1 2 So this device pleased them well. 13 Then certain of the people were so forward herein, that they went to the king, who gave them licence to do after the ordinances of the heathen: 14 Whereupon they built a place of exercise at Jerusalem according to the customs of the heathen:
This place of exercise was called a gym or gymnasium where the Greeks would workout naked. from Greek gumnasion, from gumnazein, to exercise naked, from gumnos, naked. See nogw- in Indo-European Roots. This is still carried out to day in gyms with partially naked people. This was also a place were they practised lewd acts such as orgies. This would included sex with children and homosexuality.
I Maccabees 1:15 And made themselves uncircumcised, and forsook the holy covenant, and joined themselves to the heathen, and were sold to do mischief. 16 Now when the kingdom was established before Antiochus, he thought to reign over Egypt that he might have the dominion of two realms. 17 Wherefore he entered into Egypt with a great multitude, with chariots, and elephants, and horsemen, and a great navy, 18 And made war against Ptolemee king of Egypt: but Ptolemee was afraid of him, and fled; and many were wounded to death. 19 Thus they got the strong cities in the land of Egypt and he took the spoils thereof. 20 And after that Antiochus had smitten Egypt, he returned again in the hundred forty and third year, and went up against Israel and Jerusalem with a great multitude, 21 And entered proudly into the sanctuary, and took away the golden altar, and the candlestick of light, and all the vessels thereof, 22 And the table of the shewbread, and the pouring vessels, and the vials. and the censers of gold, and the veil, and the crown, and the golden ornaments that were before the temple, all which he pulled off. 23 He took also the silver and the gold, and the precious vessels: also he took the hidden treasures which he found. 24 And when he had taken all away, he went into his own land, having made a great massacre, and spoken very proudly.
Daniel 8:24 And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power: and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and practise, and shall destroy the mighty and the holy people.
I Maccabees 1:25-30 Therefore there was a great mourning in Israel, in every place where they were; 26 So that the princes and elders mourned, the virgins and young men were made feeble, and the beauty of women was changed. 27 Every bridegroom took up lamentation, and she that sat in the marriage chamber was in heaviness, 28 The land also was moved for the inhabitants thereof, and all the house of Jacob was covered with confusion. 29 And after two years fully expired the king sent his chief collector of tribute unto the cities of Juda, who came unto Jerusalem with a great multitude, 30 And spake peaceable words unto them, but all was deceit: for when they had given him credence, he fell suddenly upon the city, and smote it very sore, and destroyed much people of Israel.
Daniel 8:25 And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many: he shall also stand up against the Prince of princes; but he shall be broken without hand. (2Ma 9:5 But the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, smote him with an incurable and invisible plague:).
I Maccabees 1:31-63 And when he had taken the spoils of the city, he set it on fire, and pulled down the houses and walls thereof on every side. 32 But the women and children took they captive, and possessed the cattle. 33 Then builded they the city of David with a great and strong wall, and with mighty towers, and made it a strong hold for them. 34 And they put therein a sinful nation, wicked men, and fortified themselves therein. 35 They stored it also with armour and victuals, and when they had gathered together the spoils of Jerusalem, they laid them up there, and so they became a sore snare: 36 For it was a place to lie in wait against the sanctuary, and an evil adversary to Israel. 37 Thus they shed innocent blood on every side of the sanctuary, and defiled it: 38 Insomuch that the inhabitants of Jerusalem fled because of them: whereupon the city was made an habitation of strangers, and became strange to those that were born in her; and her own children left her. 39 Her sanctuary was laid waste like a wilderness, her feasts were turned into mourning, her sabbaths into reproach her honour into contempt. 40 As had been her glory, so was her dishonour increased, and her excellency was turned into mourning. 41 Moreover king Antiochus wrote to his whole kingdom, that all should be one people, 42 And every one should leave his laws: so all the heathen agreed according to the commandment of the king. 43 Yea, many also of the Israelites consented to his religion, and sacrificed unto idols, and profaned the sabbath. 44 For the king had sent letters by messengers unto Jerusalem and the cities of Juda that they should follow the strange laws of the land, 45 And forbid burnt offerings, and sacrifice, and drink offerings, in the temple; and that they should profane the sabbaths and festival days: 46 And pollute the sanctuary and holy people: 47 Set up altars, and groves, and chapels of idols, and sacrifice swine’s flesh, and unclean beasts: 48 That they should also leave their children uncircumcised, and make their souls abominable with all manner of uncleanness and profanation: 49 To the end they might forget the law, and change all the ordinances. 50 And whosoever would not do according to the commandment of the king, he said, he should die. 51 In the selfsame manner wrote he to his whole kingdom, and appointed overseers over all the people, commanding the cities of Juda to sacrifice, city by city. 52 Then many of the people were gathered unto them, to wit every one that forsook the law; and so they committed evils in the land; 53 And drove the Israelites into secret places, even wheresoever they could flee for succour. 54 Now the fifteenth day of the month Casleu, in the hundred forty and fifth year, they set up the abomination of desolation upon the altar, and builded idol altars throughout the cities of Juda on every side; 55 And burnt incense at the doors of their houses, and in the streets. 56 And when they had rent in pieces the books of the law which they found, they burnt them with fire. 57 And whosoever was found with any the book of the testament, or if any committed to the law, the king’s commandment was, that they should put him to death. 58 Thus did they by their authority unto the Israelites every month, to as many as were found in the cities. 59 Now the five and twentieth day of the month they did sacrifice upon the idol altar, which was upon the altar of God. 60 At which time according to the commandment they put to death certain women, that had caused their children to be circumcised. 61 And they hanged the infants about their necks, and rifled their houses, and slew them that had circumcised them. 62 Howbeit many in Israel were fully resolved and confirmed in themselves not to eat any unclean thing. 63 Wherefore the rather to die, that they might not be defiled with meats, and that they might not profane the holy covenant: so then they died. 64 And there was very great wrath upon Israel.
I Maccabees 4:1-60 Then took Gorgias five thousand footmen, and a thousand of the best horsemen, and removed out of the camp by night; 2 To the end he might rush in upon the camp of the Jews, and smite them suddenly. And the men of the fortress were his guides. 3 Now when Judas heard thereof he himself removed, and the valiant men with him, that he might smite the king’s army which was at Emmaus, 4 While as yet the forces were dispersed from the camp. 5 In the mean season came Gorgias by night into the camp of Judas: and when he found no man there, he sought them in the mountains: for said he, These fellows flee from us 6 But as soon as it was day, Judas shewed himself in the plain with three thousand men, who nevertheless had neither armour nor swords to their minds. 7 And they saw the camp of the heathen, that it was strong and well harnessed, and compassed round about with horsemen; and these were expert of war. 8 Then said Judas to the men that were with him, Fear ye not their multitude, neither be ye afraid of their assault. 9 Remember how our fathers were delivered in the Red sea, when Pharaoh pursued them with an army. 10 Now therefore let us cry unto heaven, if peradventure the Lord will have mercy upon us, and remember the covenant of our fathers, and destroy this host before our face this day: 11 That so all the heathen may know that there is one who delivereth and saveth Israel. 12 Then the strangers lifted up their eyes, and saw them coming over against them. 13 Wherefore they went out of the camp to battle; but they that were with Judas sounded their trumpets. 14 So they joined battle, and the heathen being discomfited fled into the plain. 15 Howbeit all the hindmost of them were slain with the sword: for they pursued them unto Gazera, and unto the plains of Idumea, and Azotus, and Jamnia, so that there were slain of them upon a three thousand men. 16 This done, Judas returned again with his host from pursuing them, 17 And said to the people, Be not greedy of the spoil inasmuch as there is a battle before us, 18 And Gorgias and his host are here by us in the mountain: but stand ye now against our enemies, and overcome them, and after this ye may boldly take the spoils. 19 As Judas was yet speaking these words, there appeared a part of them looking out of the mountain: 20 Who when they perceived that the Jews had put their host to flight and were burning the tents; for the smoke that was seen declared what was done: 21 When therefore they perceived these things, they were sore afraid, and seeing also the host of Judas in the plain ready to fight, 22 They fled every one into the land of strangers. 23 Then Judas returned to spoil the tents, where they got much gold, and silver, and blue silk, and purple of the sea, and great riches. 24 After this they went home, and sung a song of thanksgiving, and praised the Lord in heaven: because it is good, because his mercy endureth forever. 25 Thus Israel had a great deliverance that day. 26 Now all the strangers that had escaped came and told Lysias what had happened: 27 Who, when he heard thereof, was confounded and discouraged, because neither such things as he would were done unto Israel, nor such things as the king commanded him were come to pass. 28 The next year therefore following Lysias gathered together threescore thousand choice men of foot, and five thousand horsemen, that he might subdue them. 29 So they came into Idumea, and pitched their tents at Bethsura, and Judas met them with ten thousand men. 30 And when he saw that mighty army, he prayed and said, Blessed art thou, O Saviour of Israel, who didst quell the violence of the mighty man by the hand of thy servant David, and gavest the host of strangers into the hands of Jonathan the son of Saul, and his armourbearer; 31 Shut up this army in the hand of thy people Israel, and let them be confounded in their power and horsemen: 32 Make them to be of no courage, and cause the boldness of their strength to fall away, and let them quake at their destruction: 33 Cast them down with the sword of them that love thee, and let all those that know thy name praise thee with thanksgiving. 34 So they joined battle; and there were slain of the host of Lysias about five thousand men, even before them were they slain. 35 Now when Lysias saw his army put to flight, and the manliness of Judas’ soldiers, and how they were ready either to live or die valiantly, he went into Antiochia, and gathered together a company of strangers, and having made his army greater than it was, he purposed to come again into Judea. 36 Then said Judas and his brethren, Behold, our enemies are discomfited: let us go up to cleanse and dedicate the sanctuary. 37 Upon this all the host assembled themselves together, and went up into mount Sion. 38 And when they saw the sanctuary desolate, and the altar profaned, and the gates burned up, and shrubs growing in the courts as in a forest, or in one of the mountains, yea, and the priests’ chambers pulled down; 39 They rent their clothes, and made great lamentation, and cast ashes upon their heads, 40 And fell down flat to the ground upon their faces, and blew an alarm with the trumpets, and cried toward heaven. 41 Then Judas appointed certain men to fight against those that were in the fortress, until he had cleansed the sanctuary. 42 So he chose priests of blameless conversation, such as had pleasure in the law: 43 Who cleansed the sanctuary, and bare out the defiled stones into an unclean place. 44 And when as they consulted what to do with the altar of burnt offerings, which was profaned; 45 They thought it best to pull it down, lest it should be a reproach to them, because the heathen had defiled it: wherefore they pulled it down, 46 And laid up the stones in the mountain of the temple in a convenient place, until there should come a prophet to shew what should be done with them. 47 Then they took whole stones according to the law, and built a new altar according to the former; 48 And made up the sanctuary, and the things that were within the temple, and hallowed the courts. 49 They made also new holy vessels, and into the temple they brought the candlestick, and the altar of burnt offerings, and of incense, and the table. 50 And upon the altar they burned incense, and the lamps that were upon the candlestick they lighted, that they might give light in the temple. 51 Furthermore they set the loaves upon the table, and spread out the veils, and finished all the works which they had begun to make. 52 Now on the five and twentieth day of the ninth month, which is called the month Casleu, in the hundred forty and eighth year, they rose up betimes in the morning, 53 And offered sacrifice according to the law upon the new altar of burnt offerings, which they had made. 54 Look, at what time and what day the heathen had profaned it, even in that was it dedicated with songs, and citherns, and harps, and cymbals. 55 Then all the people fell upon their faces, worshipping and praising the God of heaven, who had given them good success. 56 And so they kept the dedication of the altar eight days and offered burnt offerings with gladness, and sacrificed the sacrifice of deliverance and praise. 57 They decked also the forefront of the temple with crowns of gold, and with shields; and the gates and the chambers they renewed, and hanged doors upon them. 58 Thus was there very great gladness among the people, for that the reproach of the heathen was put away. 59 Moreover Judas and his brethren with the whole congregation of Israel ordained, that the days of the dedication of the altar should be kept in their season from year to year by the space of eight days, from the five and twentieth day of the month Casleu, with mirth and gladness. 60 At that time also they builded up the mount Sion with high walls and strong towers round about, lest the Gentiles should come and tread it down as they had done before
2 Maccabees 10:1-9 Now Maccabeus and his company, the Lord guiding them, recovered the temple and the city: 2 But the altars which the heathen had built in the open street, and also the chapels, they pulled down. 3 And having cleansed the temple they made another altar, and striking stones they took fire out of them, and offered a sacrifice after two years, and set forth incense, and lights, and shewbread. 4 When that was done, they fell flat down, and besought the Lord that they might come no more into such troubles; but if they sinned any more against him, that he himself would chasten them with mercy, and that they might not be delivered unto the blasphemous and barbarous nations. 5 Now upon the same day that the strangers profaned the temple, on the very same day it was cleansed again, even the five and twentieth day of the same month, which is Casleu. 6 And they kept the eight days with gladness, as in the feast of the tabernacles, remembering that not long afore they had held the feast of the tabernacles, when as they wandered in the mountains and dens like beasts. 7 Therefore they bare branches, and fair boughs, and palms also, and sang psalms unto him that had given them good success in cleansing his place. 8 They ordained also by a common statute and decree, That every year those days should be kept of the whole nation of the Jews. 9 And this was the end of Antiochus, called Epiphanes.
This is the feast that we as Israelites are to observe in the winter. The same feast that Jesus Christ celebrated in the winter not Christmas.
John 10:22-23 And it was at Jerusalem the feast of the dedication, and it was winter. 23 And Jesus walked in the temple in Solomon’s porch.