Against All Odds - Hanukka and Mashiah
The miracle of Hanukka is one when we celebrate an "against all odds" victory of the Torah-true Hashmonaim over the Syrian Greeks and Hellenists. The Hasmonian small group of righteous soldiers defeating the enemy, thereby reestablishing Jewish sovereignty over Judea and the Beit Hamikdash, is the miracle that the Al Hanisim discusses, and it is the reason why we say Hallel on the holiday.
The continued lineage of Mashiah is no less a miracle. I'll list for you some of the miraculous circumstances that will eventually bring (or hopefully has already brought) about the birth of Mashiah.
- This week's Perasha has the story of Yehuda and Tamar - where Yehuda has relations with what he thinks to be a harlot and ends up being his daughter-in-law, Tamar.
- A few weeks back, we learned of the story of Lot and his daughters. Lot was the father of Mo'av, an ancestor of Rut, who is an ancestor of David Hamelech. Lot was also the father of Amon, an ancestor of Na'ama Ha'amonit, the mother of Rehav'am Ben Shelomo Hamelech.
- Rut herself was married to Bo'az one night, whereupon Bo'az died, but not before she was pregnant.
- Updated: Yishai's wife, Nitzevet, had relations with him after being separated from her for 3 years by tricking him into thinking he was having relations with his maid-servant.
- David Hamelech had relations with Bat-Sheva, a married woman, the mother of Shelomo Hamelech.
- Atalya, the daughter of Ahav, wipes out the entire royal family, but not before Yehosheva, her daughter and wife of the Kohen Gadol, takes baby Yo'ash and hides him in the Holy of Holies for 7 years.
- Yehoyachin's son's miraculous birth (see Sanhedrin 37b-38a and Rashi there).
- Rabban Yohanan Ben Zakkai asking for the "Geneological chain of Rabban Gamliel" to be saved from the Roman Emporer Vespasian (see Gittin 56b and Rashi there).