By Dr. Joshua Kulp
The roots of Hanukkah as a holiday celebrating a historical event are fairly clear. In the year 166-165 B.C.E., the Hasmoneans (called Maccabees in Greek sources) led a rebellion against the Greeks which culminated in the rededication of the Temple on the 25th of the month of Kislev. Subsequently, the Hasmoneans and their descendants established an eight day holiday to commemorate this occasion and to instill loyalty in their dynasty. This extra-biblical holiday came to be known as Hanukkah, which means rededication.