Hanukkah Celebrations and Historic Excavations

This year’s Hanukkah celebration in Israel is a special one already, just a couple days into the eight-day holiday. On Tuesday night, dozens of Holocaust survivors took part in a menorah-lighting ceremony at the Western Wall in Jerusalem to pay tribute to the 6 million Jewish lives lost in the Holocaust. An online event featuring musical performances by Barry Manilow, a Yiddish performance of “Fiddler on the Roof,” and appearances by Jewish, Israeli, and German leaders accompanied the ceremony. About 175,000 Holocaust survivors still live in Israel today, according to worldisraelnews.com.

In the world of archaeology, Hanukkah began this year with a rare discovery. School students from Susya, in the Hebron hills, unearthed a unique oil lamp believed to have been used by ancient Jewish residents of the town, worldisraelnews.com reported. Archaeologists have unearthed a wealth of artifacts in Susya, which had a thriving Jewish community from the era of the Second Temple (between 515 B.C. and 70 A.D.) until 1,000 years ago. 

Hanukkah is a great time not only to remember the specific event that began the holiday, the rededication of the Temple, but also to consider the history of the Lord’s faithfulness to His Chosen People. The horrors of the Holocaust are incomparably evil, yet God preserved the Jewish people and even brought about the rebirth of the nation of Israel. This menorah-lighting ceremony for Holocaust survivors is a good reminder of His deliverance. The discovery of a new antiquity found in Susya is the latest in a long, ever-growing line of evidence of Jewish history in the land of Israel, their inheritance from the Lord. It’s a pleasure to see ancient history unearthed today to further support what God’s Word tells us about His covenant with His people and their homeland. Happy Hanukkah!