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הפטרה חלופית לשבת שחל ביום לפני חנוכה או ביום הראשון של חנוכה (ביום כד׳ וכה׳ לכסלו)‏ | Alternative Haftarah for when Shabbat falls either on the day before Ḥanukkah or the first day of Ḥanukkah

When the first day of Ḥanukkah is a Shabbat, the last day of Ḥanukkah is also Shabbat. In most customs this is addressed by using the standard Shabbat Ḥanukkah haftarah from Zechariah on the first day and I Kings 7:40–50 on the last day. But this never sat well with me, since I Kings 7:40–50 (also the haftara for Vayakhel) is a very technical reading, and the last day of Ḥanukkah is more of a culmination. Conveniently, another minor prophet contemporary of Zechariah, Ḥaggai, discusses the reconstruction of the House as a process of national revitalization, *and* claims that the foundation of the temple was rebuilt on the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month — i.e. the day before Ḥanukkah! This is historically fascinating since it suggests that Ḥanukkah as a rededication festival might predate the Maccabean Revolt entirely, but more importantly here, it makes it a very appropriate reading for the day before or the first day of Ḥanukkah. This is an alternative haftarah from the book of Ḥaggai , chapter 2 verses 2—23, that could be used as a replacement for the standard haftarah when Shabbat falls on the day before Ḥanukkah or on the first day of Ḥanukkah. When read on the first day of Ḥanukkah, the traditional Ḥanukkah haftarah reading of Zechariah 2:14–4:7 would be postponed to the eighth day in its place.

Note: “The CAUSE” is used to translate the Divine Name YHVH, based on the philosophical idea of God as the Prime Mover and on the interpretation of the Name as a causative form of the copula – “causes to be.”


Source (Hebrew) Translation (English)
Ḥaggai 2:2–23

אֱמׇר־נָ֗א אֶל־זְרֻבָּבֶ֤ל בֶּן־שַׁלְתִּיאֵל֙ פַּחַ֣ת יְהוּדָ֔ה וְאֶל־יְהוֹשֻׁ֥עַ בֶּן־יְהוֹצָדָ֖ק הַכֹּהֵ֣ן הַגָּד֑וֹל וְאֶל־שְׁאֵרִ֥ית הָעָ֖ם לֵאמֹֽר׃ מִ֤י בָֿכֶם֙ הַנִּשְׁאָ֔ר אֲשֶׁ֤ר רָאָה֙ אֶת־הַבַּ֣יִת הַזֶּ֔ה בִּכְבוֹד֖וֹ הָרִאשׁ֑וֹן וּמָ֨ה אַתֶּ֜ם רֹאִ֤ים אֹתוֹ֙ עַ֔תָּה הֲל֥וֹא כָמֹ֛הוּ כְּאַ֖יִן בְּעֵינֵיכֶֽם׃ וְעַתָּ֣ה חֲזַ֣ק זְרֻבָּבֶ֣ל ׀ נְאֻם־יְהֹוָ֡ה וַחֲזַ֣ק יְהוֹשֻׁ֣עַ בֶּן־יְהוֹצָדָק֩ הַכֹּהֵ֨ן הַגָּד֜וֹל וַחֲזַ֨ק כׇּל־עַ֥ם הָאָ֛רֶץ נְאֻם־יְהֹוָ֖ה וַֽעֲשׂ֑וּ כִּֽי־אֲנִ֣י אִתְּכֶ֔ם נְאֻ֖ם יְהֹוָ֥ה צְבָאֽוֹת׃ אֶֽת־הַדָּבָ֞ר אֲשֶׁר־כָּרַ֤תִּי אִתְּכֶם֙ בְּצֵאתְכֶ֣ם מִמִּצְרַ֔יִם וְרוּחִ֖י עֹמֶ֣דֶת בְּתוֹכְכֶ֑ם אַל־תִּירָֽאוּ׃
Say, please, to Zərubavel son of Shaltiel, pasha of Judea, and to Yəhoshuaʿ son of Yəhotsadaq the high priest, and to the remainder of the people and say: Who among you remains who had seen this House in its original glory, and what do you see of it now — isn’t it nothing like it in your eyes? And now, bolster yourself, Zərubavel — proclaims the CAUSE — and bolster yourself, Yəhoshuaʿ son of Yəhotsadaq the high priest, and bolster yourself, all the people of the land — proclaims the CAUSE — and make it, for I am with you — declares the CAUSE of Multitudes. Per the deal that I cut with you when you were leaving Egypt, my Spirit stands among you, don’t fear.

כִּ֣י כֹ֤ה אָמַר֙ יְהֹוָ֣ה צְבָא֔וֹת ע֥וֹד אַחַ֖ת מְעַ֣ט הִ֑יא וַאֲנִ֗י מַרְעִישׁ֙ אֶת־הַשָּׁמַ֣יִם וְאֶת־הָאָ֔רֶץ וְאֶת־הַיָּ֖ם וְאֶת־הֶחָרָבָֽה׃ וְהִרְעַשְׁתִּי֙ אֶת־כׇּל־הַגּוֹיִ֔ם וּבָ֖אוּ חֶמְדַּ֣ת כׇּל־הַגּוֹיִ֑ם וּמִלֵּאתִ֞י אֶת־הַבַּ֤יִת הַזֶּה֙ כָּב֔וֹד אָמַ֖ר יְהֹוָ֥ה צְבָאֽוֹת׃ לִ֥י הַכֶּ֖סֶף וְלִ֣י הַזָּהָ֑ב נְאֻ֖ם יְהֹוָ֥ה צְבָאֽוֹת׃ גָּד֣וֹל יִֽהְיֶ֡ה כְּבוֹד֩ הַבַּ֨יִת הַזֶּ֤ה הָאַֽחֲרוֹן֙ מִן־הָ֣רִאשׁ֔וֹן אָמַ֖ר יְהֹוָ֣ה צְבָא֑וֹת וּבַמָּק֤וֹם הַזֶּה֙ אֶתֵּ֣ן שָׁל֔וֹם נְאֻ֖ם יְהֹוָ֥ה צְבָאֽוֹת׃
For thus says the CAUSE of Multitudes: just one little bit more and I’ll be shaking the heavens and the earth and the sea and the dry land. And I’ll shake all the nations, and the luxuries of the nations will come, and this House will be filled with glory — says the CAUSE of Multitudes. Mine is the silver and Mine is the gold — proclaims the CAUSE of Multitudes. Greater will be the glory of this latter House than the former — says the CAUSE of Multitudes — and in this place I will grant peace — proclaims the CAUSE of Multitudes.

בְּעֶשְׂרִ֤ים וְאַרְבָּעָה֙ לַתְּשִׁיעִ֔י בִּשְׁנַ֥ת שְׁתַּ֖יִם לְדָרְיָ֑וֶשׁ הָיָה֙ דְּבַר־יְהֹוָ֔ה אֶל־חַגַּ֥י הַנָּבִ֖יא לֵאמֹֽר׃ כֹּ֥ה אָמַ֖ר יְהֹוָ֣ה צְבָא֑וֹת שְׁאַל־נָ֧א אֶת־הַכֹּהֲנִ֛ים תּוֹרָ֖ה לֵאמֹֽר׃ הֵ֣ן ׀ יִשָּׂא־אִ֨ישׁ בְּשַׂר־קֹ֜דֶשׁ בִּכְנַ֣ף בִּגְד֗וֹ וְנָגַ֣ע בִּ֠כְנָפ֠וֹ אֶל־הַלֶּ֨חֶם וְאֶל־הַנָּזִ֜יד וְאֶל־הַיַּ֧יִן וְאֶל־שֶׁ֛מֶן וְאֶל־כׇּל־מַאֲכָ֖ל הֲיִקְדָּ֑שׁ וַיַּעֲנ֧וּ הַכֹּהֲנִ֛ים וַיֹּאמְר֖וּ לֹֽא׃ וַיֹּ֣אמֶר חַגַּ֔י אִם־יִגַּ֧ע טְמֵא־נֶ֛פֶשׁ בְּכׇל־אֵ֖לֶּה הֲיִטְמָ֑א וַיַּעֲנ֧וּ הַכֹּהֲנִ֛ים וַיֹּאמְר֖וּ יִטְמָֽא׃ וַיַּ֨עַן חַגַּ֜י וַיֹּ֗אמֶר כֵּ֣ן הָֽעָם־הַ֠זֶּ֠ה וְכֵן־הַגּ֨וֹי הַזֶּ֤ה לְפָנַי֙ נְאֻם־יְהֹוָ֔ה וְכֵ֖ן כׇּל־מַעֲשֵׂ֣ה יְדֵיהֶ֑ם וַאֲשֶׁ֥ר יַקְרִ֛יבוּ שָׁ֖ם טָמֵ֥א הֽוּא׃ וְעַתָּה֙ שִֽׂימוּ־נָ֣א לְבַבְכֶ֔ם מִן־הַיּ֥וֹם הַזֶּ֖ה וָמָ֑עְלָה מִטֶּ֧רֶם שֽׂוּם־אֶ֛בֶן אֶל־אֶ֖בֶן בְּהֵיכַ֥ל יְהֹוָֽה׃ מִֽהְיוֹתָ֥ם בָּא֙ אֶל־עֲרֵמַ֣ת עֶשְׂרִ֔ים וְהָיְתָ֖ה עֲשָׂרָ֑ה בָּ֣א אֶל־הַיֶּ֗קֶב לַחְשֹׂף֙ חֲמִשִּׁ֣ים פּוּרָ֔ה וְהָיְתָ֖ה עֶשְׂרִֽים׃ הִכֵּ֨יתִי אֶתְכֶ֜ם בַּשִּׁדָּפ֤וֹן וּבַיֵּֽרָקוֹן֙ וּבַבָּרָ֔ד אֵ֖ת כׇּל־מַעֲשֵׂ֣ה יְדֵיכֶ֑ם וְאֵין־אֶתְכֶ֥ם אֵלַ֖י נְאֻם־יְהֹוָֽה׃ שִׂימוּ־נָ֣א לְבַבְכֶ֔ם מִן־הַיּ֥וֹם הַזֶּ֖ה וָמָ֑עְלָה מִיּוֹם֩ עֶשְׂרִ֨ים וְאַרְבָּעָ֜ה לַתְּשִׁיעִ֗י לְמִן־הַיּ֛וֹם אֲשֶׁר־יֻסַּ֥ד הֵֽיכַל־יְהֹוָ֖ה שִׂ֥ימוּ לְבַבְכֶֽם׃ הַע֤וֹד הַזֶּ֙רַע֙ בַּמְּגוּרָ֔ה וְעַד־הַגֶּ֨פֶן וְהַתְּאֵנָ֧ה וְהָרִמּ֛וֹן וְעֵ֥ץ הַזַּ֖יִת לֹ֣א נָשָׂ֑א מִן־הַיּ֥וֹם הַזֶּ֖ה אֲבָרֵֽךְ׃
On the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month of the second year of Darəyawesh, the word of the CAUSE came to Ḥaggai the prophet and said: Thus says the CAUSE of Multitudes — ask, please, the priests a legal question, namely: If a man is carrying consecrated meat in a fold of his clothing, and touches with that fold any bread or lentils or wine or oil or any other food, is it consecrated? And the priests answered and said, “No.” And Ḥaggai said, If someone with corpse impurity touches any of these, is it defiled? And the priests answered and said, “It is.” And Ḥaggai answered and said: Thus is this people, and thus is this nation before Me — proclaims the CAUSE — and thus all the works of their hands, and what they offer there is defiled. And now, set your minds to this, from this day and prior: as long as none have set stone on stone in the palace of the CAUSE, one who came to a twenty-measure grain pile of would get only ten from it, and one who came to a wine-vat to press out fifty measures, the winepress would have only twenty. I had struck you with blight and mildew and hail, all the works of your hands; but none among you were with Me — proclaims the CAUSE. Please set your minds to this, from this day on, from the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month, from the day of the refounding of the palace of the CAUSE — set your minds. Though the seed is still in the granary, and while the grapevine and fig and pomegranate and olive tree have not borne fruit; from this day I will bless.

וַיְהִ֨י דְבַר־יְהֹוָ֤ה ׀ שֵׁנִית֙ אֶל־חַגַּ֔י בְּעֶשְׂרִ֧ים וְאַרְבָּעָ֛ה לַחֹ֖דֶשׁ לֵאמֹֽר׃ אֱמֹ֕ר אֶל־זְרֻבָּבֶ֥ל פַּֽחַת־יְהוּדָ֖ה לֵאמֹ֑ר אֲנִ֣י מַרְעִ֔ישׁ אֶת־הַשָּׁמַ֖יִם וְאֶת־הָאָֽרֶץ׃ וְהָֽפַכְתִּי֙ כִּסֵּ֣א מַמְלָכ֔וֹת וְהִ֨שְׁמַדְתִּ֔י חֹ֖זֶק מַמְלְכ֣וֹת הַגּוֹיִ֑ם וְהָפַכְתִּ֤י מֶרְכָּבָה֙ וְרֹ֣כְבֶ֔יהָ וְיָרְד֤וּ סוּסִים֙ וְרֹ֣כְבֵיהֶ֔ם אִ֖ישׁ בְּחֶ֥רֶב אָחִֽיו׃ בַּיּ֣וֹם הַה֣וּא נְאֻם־יְהֹוָ֣ה צְבָא֡וֹת אֶ֠קָּחֲךָ֠ זְרֻבָּבֶ֨ל בֶּן־שְׁאַלְתִּיאֵ֤ל עַבְדִּי֙ נְאֻם־יְהֹוָ֔ה וְשַׂמְתִּ֖יךָ כַּֽחוֹתָ֑ם כִּֽי־בְךָ֣ בָחַ֔רְתִּי נְאֻ֖ם יְהֹוָ֥ה צְבָאֽוֹת׃
And the word of the CAUSE came again to Ḥaggai the prophet on the twenty-fourth of the month and said: Say to Zərubavel the pasha of Judea and say: I’ll be shaking the heavens and the earth. And I’ll overturn monarchic thrones and destroy the strength of the monarchies of nations, and overturn chariot and rider, and the horses and their riders will go down, each by the sword of his fellow. On that day — proclaims the CAUSE of Multitudes — I will take Zərubavel son of Shəʾaltiel My servant — proclaims the CAUSE — and place him as a signet, for I trust in you — proclaims the CAUSE of Multitudes.

 

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