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How do you explain that Hanukkah is not the Jewish Christmas?

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Quick Answer

To explain that Hanukkah is not the Jewish Christmas, begin by stating that the two are completely different holidays, celebrating different events, and are observed by followers of different religious faiths, notes Bible Study Planet. Some people use the analogy that Hanukkah is the Jewish Christmas to explain the holiday to non-Jews, but the two holidays are markedly different.

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Full Answer

Hanukkah is a relatively minor holiday in the Jewish calendar; it does not hold the same importance to Jews as Christmas does to Christians. These two holidays celebrate different religious events. Hanukkah is also known as the Festival of Lights and celebrates the rededication of the Temple when the holy oil miraculously lasted the full eight days of worship. Christians celebrate the holiday of Christmas as a remembrance of the birth of Jesus, the son of God.

Although some observers of Hanukkah have taken to gift giving during the eight-day holiday, this is often because of contact with Christian communities and their modern observance of Christmas. Likewise, as Christmas has been increasingly commercialized, attempts have been made to commercialize Hanukkah through gift giving. For followers of the Christian faith, Christmas and Easter are the two most important holidays of the year; this does not equate to the role that Hanukkah serves for members of the Jewish faith.

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