Hanukkah Teaching by Chaim Goldman [Repairing the Breach]
1 Maccabees 1:41-49
41 Then the king wrote to his whole kingdom that all should be one people, 42 and that all should give up their particular customs. 43 All the Gentiles accepted the command of the king. Many even from Israel gladly adopted his religion; they sacrificed to idols and profaned the Sabbath. 44 And the king sent letters by messengers to Jerusalem and the towns of Judah; he directed them to follow customs strange to the land, 45 to forbid burnt offerings and sacrifices and drink offerings in the sanctuary, to profane Sabbaths and festivals, 46 to defile the sanctuary and the priests, 47 to build altars and sacred precincts and shrines for idols, to sacrifice swine and other unclean animals, 48 and to leave their sons uncircumcised. They were to make themselves abominable by everything unclean and profane, 49 so that they would forget the law and change all the ordinances. 50 He added, “And whoever does not obey the command of the king shall die.”
We can see from the above passage what was targeted to erase the faith of Yah:
1) Forbid sacrifices to Yah
2) Profane Sabbaths and festivals
3) Defile the sanctuary and priests
4) Build idols
5) Sacrifice swine & unclean animals
6) Leave their sons uncircumcised
7) Eat unclean animals
8) Forget the Torah
Little did Antiochus Epiphanes know that hundreds of years later the Catholic church would accomplish all the above. If you look at this list you can see that this is basically the main doctrine of that church and her daughters. In main line Christianity the Sabbath and the festivals are all but forgotten, Catholic "priests" are taken from just anyone out of the land instead of the sons of Aaron, idol building is rampant, swine and unclean animals are the center of religious holiday feasts, circumcision is ignored, and the Torah is ridiculed if it is even acknowledged at all.
We know that the Father blesses us for obedience (Deuteronomy 28). We must continue on the path of life that the Father has laid out for us, but it is so easy to want to slip back into conformity with Satan's world, to take the easy way out, to compromise our integrity. When we feel the pressure to abandon the ways of the most high, be it from our work or our family or our friends. Do we have the resolve within ourselves to say "no", to tell this world that we will not be like it, we are going to follow our Master. What a great example of faith we have from the Maccabees. May all of us who follow the commandments of Elohim and the testimony of Yeshua have such faith and determination.