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During the Second Temple, the Greek empire reigned (over Israel),1 and they (the Greeks) passed decrees against the Jews and (tried) to erase their religion, and did not allow them to carry out Torah (study) or the commandments. They put their hands on their property and their daughters. They entered the Temple, destroyed and made the pure unclean. The Jews were in great distress because of them and were much oppressed, until the G-d of their fathers had mercy on them, delivering them from their hands and saving them. Then overcame, the sons of the Hasmonean High Priest, (the Greeks) and killed them and saved the Jews from their hands. They appointed a king from the Priests, and the kingdom of Israel was restored for more than 200 years until the destruction of (the) second (Temple). When the Jews overcame their enemies and destroyed them, it was the 25th of Kislev2 when they entered the Sanctuary (inner room) and did not find pure (olive) oil in the Temple, except one jar sealed with seal of the High Priest, and it did not contain enough to light except for one day only. But they lit from it the lamps of the Menorah3 for eight days, until they could crush olives and produce a (new quantity) of pure oil. For these reasons, decreed the Sages of that generation that these eight days that begin on the 25th Kislev, will be days of joy and praise. One lights on them lamps at evening at the entrance to the houses, every evening of the eight nights to show off and demonstrate the miracle. These days are called ''Hanukah'' that is to say ''they rested'' (chanu) on the ''25'' ('th of the month) because on the 25th they rested from their enemies. and also because of those days they (re)-dedicated the house (Temple) which their foes had defiled. Also some say that it is a commandment to increase slightly the festive meals on Hanukah. Another reason is because the work of (building) the Sanctuary (in the desert) was completed in these days. One should tell one's children the story of the miracles that were done for our fore-fathers in those days, (see Josephus) However, these meals are not considered as part of the commandment unless one says at the meal songs of praise. One should increase charity in these Hanukah days, for this can help mend any defects in our souls. This charity, should be given particularly to poor Torah scholars. (KSA 139:1)
1) 352 BCE until 70 CE
2) 139 BCE
3) The Menorah was made of gold and had seven branches.
HaAzinu marks the final time in the Torah where Hashem foretells the future generations of Klal Yisroel after they enter Eretz Yisroel. Indeed, some M’phorshim understand that HaAzinu contains detailed allusions to everything that will happen to the Jewish people. After predicting that there would be many years of peace and plenty, the Torah warns that B’nei Yisroel will become “fat”. (HaAzinu 32:15) Inevitably, we would then enjoy our blessings and forget from where they come. Hashem then describes the calamities which would befall us as a result of our transgressions. (32:22-26). Curiously, the Torah then tells us that Hashem will temper his wrath, so that our enemies do not question the existence and presence of Hashem. (32:27)
This same concept was advanced twice before in the Midbar, both times by Moshe Rabbeinu. The first was after the Cheit Haegel, where Moshe pleaded, why should the Mitzrim be able to claim that you took them out just to kill them in the mountains? (Shemos, 32:11-12) And again after the Meraglim, where Moshe warned that the nations would claim that “Hashem was unable to bring Bnei Yisroel into the land…so he killed them in the dessert” (Shelach, 14:14-15) Three times we are spared Hashem’s full wrath so that the Goyim would not question Hashem’s sovereignty. Why does Hashem care what the Goyim think, or even us for that matter?
The Zohar points out that Hashem created the World so that people could perceive and appreciate His greatness. (Zohar, II: 42b) After establishing His Bris with Bnei Yisroel, it became incumbent upon us to illuminate for the goyim Hashem’s greatness. We are the chosen people. The goyim look to us for their understanding and perception of Hashem. When we fulfill the Mitzvos, we receive disproportionate Bracha and the Goyim see that Hashem rewards us for following in his ways. Conversely, when we stumble and suffer, the goyim simply see no divine providence in the world whatsoever. That is the meaning of the next Pasuk. They are without good counsel, they simply do not understand (HaAzinu 32:28).
That is in essence what is meant by our being an Ohr Lagoyim. (Yishaya 49:6
and 60:3). We are the conduit through which the world views Hashem. When we live our lives according to the Mitzvos, the goyim perceive Hashem’s presence and when we stray they see no illumination whatsoever. As we strive to reach our highest levels during the Yomim Naarayim, we must make this one of our goals. And even afterward, when there is often an inevitable decline from the heights we try to achieve, we can enlighten the world even in the mundane. Being compassionate and caring for people, being honest in our professions, being pious of our role – these are all ways that we can make every day productive in fulfilling our part of the Bris. By following Hashem’s ways when we learn Torah, fulfill the Mitzvos and take this code of behavior into the world with us, we are allowing the goyim to perceive Hashem’s greatness and at the same time insuring his mercy when we fail. Hashem does care what the Goyim think and it is our job to allow them to see his greatness
 There are several other “reasons” posited for why Hashem created the World from a multitude of great sources including the Gemara, the Rambam and the Ramban, but the Zohar’s discussion seems most relevant to the present discussion.