Sunday, April 20, 2014

What's the Big Deal About Easter?

The other day the following quotation was subject for discussion at the Churchmouse Campanologist site,
"Oh. All Easter means to me is exchanging stinky boiled eggs in church. I never understood why we did it."
It made me wonder that if a self professed Christian can feel this way, how does the average low information Christian feel about what was the most important day in the history of the world?

If there were a massive earthquake today and thousands of people died, it would be the topic of conversation for a few days, but in a few decades there might be little talk about it.
Yet millions hear about the following event each year on Good Friday,
"And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent; and the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose" Matthew 27:51-52 KJV
That earthquake of 2000 years ago will be remembered and celebrated long after tragedies like 09/11/2011 have been forgotten because the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus revealed to mankind something quite extraordinary: death is not final, God wants us to share in his eternal Kingdom, and He wants us so badly that He is willing to die for us despite all of our flaws, failures, and foibles.

Many people today do not believe in the underlying truth that undergirds these Holy Days, or they accept only bits and pieces while rationalizing away other parts of the testimony of the Gospel writers.

For example, it is a commonly held notion that the post resurrection appearances of Jesus were hallucinations, in which case the stinking boiled eggs quip seems to be an expected response to Easter.

It is also commonly believed that the fact that Jesus died so that we might live forever is not fact but fiction, something that was made up by his followers.

I never could understand why anyone would be willing to give up their lives for a hallucination or for a fabricated, fantastic theology.

Today I give thanks to those Gospel writers of so long ago who understood that this something that occurred on that Easter morning in Jerusalem was so earth changing that its memory must be passed on for future generations. The urgency and earnestness of their desire that we too might accept this event as real and vitally important to us and to all men is evident in their choices of language and style.
For that reason, I will simply list a few of those important messages which I trust will make up for any smelly boiled eggs folks had to put up with today.

If you are an unbeliever, please remember that it was with the hope that you would come to believe in Jesus as your Saviour as well as for us to never forget the first Easter that these things were recorded.

Mark 16:9-16 Now when Jesus was risen early the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils.
And she went and told them that had been with him, as they mourned and wept.
And they, when they had heard that he was alive, and had been seen of her, believed not.
After that he appeared in another form unto two of them, as they walked, and went into the country.
And they went and told it unto the residue: neither believed they them.
Afterward he appeared unto the eleven as they sat at meat, and upbraided them with their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they believed not them which had seen him after he was risen.
And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.
He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. 
Luke 24:46-48 And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behooved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day:
And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.
And ye are witnesses of these things. 
John 3:16 - For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. 
Romans 6:23 - For the wages of sin [is] death; but the gift of God [is] eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. 
John 17:3 - And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent. 
John 6:50-71 - This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die. (Read More...) 
John 20:19-24 - Then the same day at evening, being the first [day] of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace [be] unto you. (Read More...)

1 Peter 3:18-22 - For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:

Romans 10:13 - For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
John 5:28-29 - Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, (Read More...) 
Luke 23:43 - And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise. 
2 Peter 3:9 - The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. 
Ephesians 2:8-9 - For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: [it is] the gift of God:

Romans 8:38-39 - For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Acts 24:15 - And have hope toward God, which they themselves also allow, that there shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and unjust. 
John 14:23 - Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. 
Matthew 7:21-23 - Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.

Revelation 20:6 - Blessed and holy [is] he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years. 
Philippians 3:21 - Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.

Acts 2:31 - He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell, neither his flesh did see corruption. 
John 5:29 - And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation. 
John 5:28 - Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, 
Luke 20:35-36 - But they which shall be accounted worthy to obtain that world, and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry, nor are given in marriage: 
Luke 16:22-24 - And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried;

Luke 14:14 - And thou shalt be blessed; for they cannot recompense thee: for thou shalt be recompensed at the resurrection of the just. 
Plus a few Old Testament verses to remember God's promise,
Hosea 13:14 - I will ransom them from the power of the grave; I will redeem them from death: O death, I will be thy plagues; O grave, I will be thy destruction: repentance shall be hid from mine eyes. 
Psalms 86:13 - For great [is] thy mercy toward me: and thou hast delivered my soul from the lowest hell. 
Psalms 49:15 - But God will redeem my soul from the power of the grave: for he shall receive me. Selah. 
Psalms 16:10 - For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.
Happy Easter to all!


  1. Pewster,
    One of our Old Testament readings for Easter Vigil was the story of Abraham and Isaac. As I listened to the story again, it dawned on me that when Abraham put the wood on Isaac's back to be taken up the mountain for the sacrifice, it was even more symbolic of Isaac representing Christ and His cross.

  2. Maybe more like Simon of Cyrene. Isaac would not be the sacrifice. God would provide a ram. Perhaps only God can provide the perfect sacrifice.