Dwight Watt Internet Article #82

#82 - Easter - A day to celebrate 3/31/2002

#82 - Easter - A day to celebrate (Watt Thoughts)

Easter has again arrived. Why do we as Christians celebrate it and why is it really significant to us. It is the culmination of a season of Christian celebrations of significance to Christians. Different groups put more significance on certain days, but in my opinion Easter should be the most significant day of the year for us as Christians.

As we celebrate Easter today as a Christian holiday, let us keep separate our secular celebrations of spring once again arriving in the northern hemisphere and the arrival of fall in the southern hemisphere. The rabbits, eggs, candy, etc. make nice celebrations of the arrival of spring in the north, but they do not really represent Easter as a Christian Holy Day. Although may have made the meanings of the secular fit to Christianity, we need to remember as we celebrate, that our children need to know Easter is the celebration of the resurrection of Jesus.

Easter is the most significant Christian Holy Day in the year. More significant than Christmas, Maundy Thursday or Good Friday. Without Easter, all those other days that occurred have no significance. It is a historical fact that Jesus was born, celebrated on Christmas. It is a historical fact that I was born also and normally my birthday is celebrated January 25th each year. But my birthday has none of Jesus' significance as I am just a human, and he was the son of God and savior. But unless he was raised from the dead (resurrected) Jesus was just another man, and not eve that as he would have been a false messiah. He had a final meal with his followers at the Passover meal and revealed himself as rising again from the dead and as the Messiah. If he was not raised from dead then just another cult leader who had mislead his people down to his last meal. He died on the cross. The death being as a final sacrifice for the sins of man. With no raising from the dead, he was no better than the ones on each side, or the rest of us who know we too will die (unless he returns while we live).

So while the cross was extremely important with Good Friday, it is not the summary. The cross was the altar and Jesus was the sacrifice on it. The cross remains important to us today to remind us of his willingness to die for our sins. I really like the BC comic last week on this where the character summed it with that Jesus had died this awful death to cancel our reservations in hell. Why did Jesus have to die from the human perspective then. He was a threat to the Jewish leaders and Rome. The Romans could accept the Jews as they yearned for a king, but they only worshiped God. Jesus was sent as that dreamed of King. The Romans feared he would lead a revolt. The Jewish leaders in turn feared him as a prospective king as that would mean that Rome would break up their way of working with Rome and they would lose their power. So there were heavenly and earthly reasons for Jesus dying that day.

Was Easter significant to those early Christians. YES! Mary and the others who saw Jesus that Sunday saw their lives turned around 180 degrees. There is not a lot of reports of people running in the Bible, a lot sure occurred that first Easter and not a single report of one falling out with a heart attack. From the tomb back to the meeting place, from there back to the tomb, from Emmaus to Jerusalem. The followers started running to spread the Good News that day. Suddenly there was hope. Jesus was correct after all. It was not all lost that Friday when he died, but God had won. Jesus was the Messiah and overcame death. Jesus was correct that he would rise from the dead. We have every reason to believe him now. He was not just another voice in the wilderness, but He was the VOICE.

Keep the spirit of Easter throughout the year. Celebrate his arising. Know that God rules and He will have the final say on this world. Be grateful for the suffering that Jesus went thru as the final sacrifice for our sins. It is a new covenant. Celebrate it

"So let no one make rules about what you eat or drink or about holy days or the New Moon Festival the Sabbath. All such things are only a shadow of things in the future ; the reality is Christ"* So celebrate Christ's resurrection and accept his salvation for you and do good works thru your faith. Christ arose!


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