Although most people think of Easter as a Christan holiday, would you believe it if I told you it is actually not?
Easter gets it's root from pagan holiday rituals to celebrate spring and new life. The pagans used Easter to celebrate the god of fertility believing that she controlled the growth around them and if they didn't worship her she would harden their land and close their wombs.
When I look at Easter I don't see Christ in any common celebrations of this holiday either. Hunting Easter eggs, the Easter bunny, and candy are all the current celebration of the world around us and I don't believe that the dancing to the god of fertility exactly portrays Christ either. These things all has pagan roots and came not from the word of God, but from men and women trying to understand their world without God's view.
Don't get me wrong here, I don't believe that abstaining from holidays is going to help your children understand Christ better and I do believe that making things to point to Christ is a much better way to do it, but I think another key is not to emphasize those things that are not of God. Going to things like the Passion Play, or even putting on a Passion Play, reading about Jesus's sacrifice on the cross and even having a resurrection party are all things we can do to celebrate Christ with this holiday.
But alas I'm not done rambling yet. You knew there was more didn't you?
This is not how God intended for us to celebrate his work on the cross.
What? Blasphemy you say? Well I don't see any references to Easter in scripture do you?
He gave us the high holy days in his word, those days that were written in the Torah to celebrate remember and worship him. Those days were all pictures that he wanted us to remember and to relive so that we would better understand who he is and how his words were fulfilled by Jesus dying on that cross.
The people of the old treatment had no idea the depth of what they were celebrating when they celebrated Passover. This holiday was made for them to celebrate their exodus from the slavery and bondage in Egypt. How many of us realize it was also made for us to celebrate our exodus from slavery and bondage to sin?
The pascal lamb or passover lamb was the lamb sacrificed on that sad night that the angel of death tread through the streets raking the firstborn sons of Egypt. the first celebration if this holiday was on that night as they were to sacrifice the lamb and put the blood if this lamb on their door to show their covering of the Lords protection.
Looking more closely at the instructions gives us a big clue. They were to drain the blood of the pascal lamb and put the basin of blood on the ground at the base of the door (usually in the center of the door way) then they were to take and dip the branches in the blood and strike the top of the door and then the two side posts if the door. Do you see the picture yet? The basin for the nails in his feet, the top of the door marking the crown of thorns and lastly the sides marking the nails in his hands, altogether forming a cross on the door that the angel of death saw to tell him to passover that house for the Lord resided with those inside.
Is this staying to look like God's celebration for us yet? It should.Paul makes it very clear when he tells us that Jesus is our passover lamb, sent to take away the sins of the world. If this isn't a more obvious instruction, I don't know what is.
With all that being said, in this house hold we celebrate passover, and plan to explain Easter to our girls as well. Easter dinner with family and friend will most likely be common for us as well, but for me I want to hold the celebration of Passover in higher esteem since God specifically designed it for me to celebrate him with.
Ultimately, whatever we do we need to be sure to turn our eyes and hearts to his calling. He has instructed us to not stumble each other with legalism, so one plan to celebrate shouldn't hinder you from celebrating Christ as you see fit! But I am curious to know how many people know the roots of the things they celebrate. Have you researched the holidays you celebrate?
Celebrate for HE IS RISEN!
Does your family celebrate Passover? Why or why not? How do you celebrate Easter?