Who doesn’t love Easter? The crinkling sound of wrapping as it falls off Easter Eggs or bunnies, the smell of hot cross buns, and the food!
I asked this question of my co-workers: ‘What does Easter mean to you?’ Unsurprisingly, chocolate was the main answer.
Around this time, those who are Jews celebrate the Passover; the deliverance of God’s people from slavery and oppression in Egypt. According to the book of Exodus and Leviticus where the laws of The Lord are given, this is a time to reflect on the wonder of God. His mighty deeds are praised as the Egyptians fell. He is revered as He spared the Israelites from the Angel of Death, as it passed over God’s Chosen and took the lives of the first born of the Egyptians.
As Christians, we reflect on the death of Jesus; His last days, His sacrifice for us as death passed over us and onto God’s first born. We celebrate the victory over death and how we are delivered from the slavery and oppression of Satan; and how we are forgiven.
What I discovered in my research, is that Easter originated as a pagan festival in Europe, to worship Eastre, the goddess of Spring. The ‘earthly’ image of this god was a rabbit which also symbolised fertility. The Christians, of the time, adopted this holiday in order to appease the public.
This conflicts me, as Christians should we even celebrate Easter? The bible states that the Jews who followed Jesus still celebrated the Passover; but with the view that Jesus impressed on them. (Acts 12:4, 1 Cor 5:8) The word Easter isn’t mentioned in the Bible.
What do I believe Easter is? Well, I think it’s still the same as it was many generations ago; we are worshipping a false god. I was naive to the origins of Easter; thinking it was a holy time when it isn’t.
What I’ve found out this past week changed my perspective on Easter. It is not wrong to reflect and worship Jesus for His amazing sacrifice; as Christians
we should be celebrating this daily. However, to celebrate at a time that signifies an old pagan ritual of idolatry – does this not conflict with the beliefs of those who follow Jesus? It is much the same with Christmas.
This saddens me that the world has not grown or changed attitudes over the years; we are still the same. We are the same people who would crucify Jesus over and over again to satisfy our own selfish, self-harmful desires, and put a stamp of approval from the church, the bride of Christ.
So, this past Easter what did you celebrate? Easter egg hunts with your children, and hot cross buns? Those Easter eggs and rabbits symbolise the tradition of a festival that never used to be so family friendly.
It’s such a shame too, because I really like hot cross buns…