The celebration of Hanukkah was established to remember the Jewish Maccabees’ military victory over the pagan armies of the Syrian King and the conversion of the Second Temple of Jerusalem, which had been dishonoured by the Greek-Syrians, to the worship of The Supreme Being, i.e. The Great Architect of the Universe. Consequently, Hanukkah is a celebration of Jewish national survival and religious freedom.
The chronicle of the Maccabees’ military feats has been conserved in The First Book of Maccabees. In short, in response to religious persecution, Judah Maccabee and his four brothers organized a group of resistance troop known as the Maccabees. The Maccabees, using guerrilla warfare, miraculously succeeded to drive the far larger Greek-Syrian army out of Judea. The Hanukkah story proclaims the message of the prophet Zachariah: “Not by might, not by power, but by My spirit.”