Dedication, Feast of
ded-i-ka'-shun (ta egkainia, Joh 10:22): A feast held by the Jews throughout the country for eight days, commencing on the 25th Kiclev (December), in commemoration of the cleansing of the temple and dedication of the altar by Judas Maccabeus after their desecration by Antiochus Epiphanes (1 Macc 4:56,59). The feast was to be kept "with mirth and gladness." 2 Macc 10:6,7 says it was kept like the Feast of the Tabernacles, with the carrying of palm and other branches, and the singing of psalms. Josephus calls it "Lights," from the joy which accompanied it (Ant., XII, vii, 7). At this winter feast Jesus delivered in the temple the discourse recorded in Joh 10:24 ff, at Jerusalem.