Easter is one of the most important and holiest holidays for Christians worldwide. It is a time when Christians celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. Christians believe that Jesus’ resurrection is a central doctrine of their faith, which sets Christianity apart from other religions. Easter is the culmination of the Holy Week, which begins with Palm Sunday, followed by Good Friday, and ends with Easter Sunday.
One of the most popular Easter traditions for Christians is attending church services, where they celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Churches are often decorated with flowers and candles, and some churches hold special Easter services, such as sunrise services. During these services, Christians may sing hymns, recite prayers, and listen to sermons that focus on the significance of Jesus’ resurrection.
Another tradition that is closely associated with Easter is the Easter egg. Eggs symbolize new life and resurrection, which is why they have become an essential part of the Easter celebrations. Many Christians decorate Easter eggs by painting or dying them in vibrant colors, and some even hide them for children to find during Easter egg hunts. Christians also eat hot cross buns, which are baked buns that have a cross on the top, symbolizing the crucifixion of Jesus. Below is a brief video from the History Channel that tries to explain Easter.
It is said according to the Bible, Jesus was crucified on a Friday and buried in a tomb. On the third day, which is supposedly Easter Sunday, Jesus rose from the dead, proving that he was the Son of God. The majority of Christian religions of the world celebrate Easter. These faiths include Catholic, Protestant, and Orthodox religions and represent well over 90% of the more than 3 billion Christians worldwide. The following are just a few and their traditions.
Catholics celebrate Easter with great solemnity and devotion, with many attending church services, participating in the Stations of the Cross, and observing Holy Week traditions.
Eastern Orthodox Church: The Eastern Orthodox Church, which is the second-largest Christian denomination in the world, also celebrates Easter. The date of Easter in the Eastern Orthodox Church often falls on a different date than in Western Christianity due to the use of the Julian calendar instead of the Gregorian calendar.
Anglicanism: Anglicans, who are members of the Church of England or its worldwide branches, celebrate Easter with special church services, including the lighting of the Paschal candle, which represents the resurrection of Jesus.
Lutheranism: Lutherans also celebrate Easter with special church services, including the Vigil of Easter, which is a service of readings, prayers, and hymns that takes place on the night before Easter Sunday.
Methodism: Methodists celebrate Easter with great joy and devotion, with many attending church services and participating in Easter egg hunts and other activities for children.
Presbyterianism: Presbyterians also celebrate Easter with church services and traditions such as the lighting of the Paschal candle, the reading of the Easter story from the Bible, and the singing of hymns that celebrate the resurrection of Jesus.
Oh, but leave it to the “Debbie Downers” to spin the conspiracy theory that Easter, in fact, is pagan and Christianity that has been led astray. The name “Easter” was said to be derived from “Eostre,” “originally a Saxon word (Eostre), denoting a goddess of the Saxons, in honor of whom sacrifices were offered about the time of the Passover.” This very fact causes many to wonder if Easter is really a pagan holiday and if it should be celebrated by Christians. Others say that the link to these pagan rituals is weak in actual history.
The origins of Easter are wrapped up in a celebration of seasonal renewal that has taken place in numerous cultures for thousands of years around the time of the Spring Equinox – including sun worship as described Biblically. Some argue that even the Christian version of Easter merely perpetuates a pagan age-old, familiar theme of resurrection rather than honoring an actual person or event in history – learn more here and here.
Isn’t Christianity already under attack enough by “woke” culture, tearing down what’s left of any morality of the modern world? Or is the ideology of deciding for ourselves what God’s faith is, leads us to “woke” culture?
Regardless, many will say that these Easter-origin conspiracy theories are not important. The idea of Easter as a representation of the acceptance of Christ as one’s personal savior and the institution of the morality it represents for our world today is what really matters.
However, given that this is a Sunday Thoughts post, one does wonder what specifics we can glean from Biblical references about the specifics of the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ. The Bible story recounts a conversation Christ had with the people of his time on what sign he could give that he was the Messiah – consider Matthew 12:38-40.
Then some of the Pharisees and teachers of the law said to him, “Teacher, we want to see a sign from you” He answered, “A wicked and adulterous generation asks for a sign! But none will be given it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of a huge fish, so the Son of Man will be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.”
This is a rather curious response from Christ. Notice the commentary that the “only” sign He would give that He was the Messiah was that He would be dead for “three days and three nights” in the grave and then be resurrected.
There is a strong insistence put on the time frame of “three days and three nights.” Other verses put this time frame in a more precise (or an exact) manner when all is looked at in context (John 2:19: “in three days,” Mark 8:31: “after three days,” and Luke 24:46: “on the third day”). Christ seems to put a lot of effort into this point. Should we? So here is a question for us Christians.
Can you count exactly “three days and three nights” from Good Friday to Easter Sunrise?
The answer is no. The idea of a Good Friday Easter Sunrise celebration can not be supported mathematically relative to Christ’s own prophecy. So either Christ was wrong, or the traditions we hold to are wrong. Perhaps, there is another explanation. Below is a video explaining the more likely time frame of the events around the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ for those who want to take a deep dive.
Perhaps not a good comparison, but imagine not acknowledging your spouse’s correct day for their birthday or anniversary – is that respecting one’s spouse? Even more exasperating, what must Christ think about his supposedly following Christians not respecting his “only” sign that he is the Messiah? Is this too harsh of a thought to think a Good Friday Easter Sunday celebration disrespects God? This leaves us with two perplexing ideas when trying to “true” this inconvenient reality.
- It doesn’t matter – it’s the thought that counts. Romans 14:5: “One person considers one day more sacred than another; another considers every day alike.”
- It does matter. Matthew 15:9: “But in vain they do worship Me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.”
We are facing tumultuous times in America. Everyone senses something not good is about to happen, not just to America but the globe – described Biblically (see fully here) “… wars and rumors of wars, nation shall rise against nation, … and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. All these are the beginning of sorrows.”
Many point to a group of evil actors that have emerged in recent years that even extend back many decades. They are often called the “deep state cabal,” globalist, WEF elites, the 1%ers, or [insert your name], that have duped many people into believing their lies and supporting false narratives so they may seize control (in a Great Reset) that will lead the world into a very dark place.
Some have raised the level of evil we are seeing in the world to a spiritual level – fighting the forces of good and evil on a spiritual plain. Satan, who is also called the “prince of the power of the air“ “who deceiveth the whole world” would want the world to obscure the “only” sign of the Messiah – wouldn’t he? And if we are fooled on one point, what else may we have been fooled on?
Could a “deep state cabal” that is real today be extended into our very faiths in a “spiritual deep state cabal” that has been deceiving us for millennia? Consider one last thought given by Christ just before his crucifixion in his Olivet Prophecy written in Matthew 24:24: “For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.” Surely none of us could be deceived. Right?
Give us your thoughts in the comment section below on the events of the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ – do details matter? Happy Easter …
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By Tom Williams