By RABBI DAVID GALIMIDI
As we approach the auspicious days of Hanukkah, we find an unusual concept. When it comes to the Mitzvah of lighting the Menorah, there are three ways one may fulfill the obligation. The simplest form of fulfilling one’s obligation is to light only one candle every night. A more elevated level would be to light one candle, every night, per individual in one’s household. The utmost way to fulfill the Mitzvah would be to add an additional corresponding candle per night.
The question arises: whereas, with all other Mitzvot, one can choose to fulfill the Mitzvah in its most basic method or in its loftiest form, when it comes to the Mitzvah of lighting the Hanukkah candles, the Shulhan Aruch rules that everyone should fulfill the Mitzvah in its paramount form, adding a corresponding candle per night. Why is this Mitzvah so exceptional?
The Mefarshim explain that, technically, the miracle of the oil lasting so-many days was unnecessary. This is because of the concept of “Tum’a Hutra B’Tzibbur” – the prohibition of impurity in the Bet HaMikdash service is absolved with regards to public obligations (such as lighting the Menorah). If so, even if the only oil that was found was impure, it would have been permissible to use it for the Menorah!
Nevertheless, HaKadosh Baruch Hu performed this extraordinary miracle just to show the tremendous Havivut – endearment – that He has for Am Yisrael.
With this we can understand why the Gemara states that Hanukkah was established mainly to commemorate the miracle of the oil – and not just the miraculous victory of the Hashmona’im over the Yevanim. While without the latter Am Yisrael would have suffered irrecoverable losses, the miracle of the oil was superfluous. It was meant only to show the love HaKadosh Baruch Hu has towards His people. This is why the Rambam refers to Hanukkah as a “Mitzvah Haviva Ad Me’od” – a very beloved Mitzvah, a term that is not used in reference to any other Mitzvah.
May we merit to see the lighting of the Menorah and experience the true love that HaKadosh Baruch Hu has for us with the rebuilding of the final Bet HaMikdash, Amen!
 Shabbat 20b  O.H. 671:2  Hilchot Hanukkah 4:12