Wednesday, April 22, 2020


Easter has links to at least two different festivals of history.

1   The name and timing links to Babylon
This is a description of an ancient Babylonian family—2,000 years before Christ—honoring the resurrection of their god, Tammuz, who was brought back from the underworld by his mother/wife, Ishtar (after whom the festival was named).
 The English term Easter is of pagan origin” (Albert Henry Newman, D.D., LL.D., A Manual of Church History, p. 299).
 Details can be found on the internet and in the book – 'Two Babylons by Hislop.
It is not a Bible festival but was slowly introduced into the Christian church about  the second century.

2   The timing has been adapted to the Jewish Passover festival. So what was the Passover?  – 1500 years before Jesus Christ was born, God judged the people living in Egypt because of their idolatry etc. The last judgement was when the angel of death passed through the land to kill the firstborn son in each family.  The LORD God provided a way to escape – by killing a blemish free lamb and applying the blood to the door posts and lintel of their houses. Sure enough it worked and God set the Hebrew people free from slavery. He told them to celebrate this 'Passover' every year at the set time. And so to the present many calendars have mention of the Passover , which changes according to the moon cycle.

When the Lord Jesus Christ celebrated the Passover, just before He was crucified, He said to His followers  "It is fulfilled in the Kingdom of God " (Luke 22.16). 

The Apostle Paul explains more in 1 Corinthians 5:7, "Christ our Passover has been sacrificed for us" and he goes on to show that the true celebration of the Passover is the spiritual change within a Christian being lived out as Godly attitudes and behaviour.

John the Baptiser indicated  a similar concept when he identified Jesus as the 'Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world' (John 1)

The Apostle Peter concurs by referring to Jesus as the Lamb without blemish and without spot' (1Peter 1) . Some Christians did continue to celebrate the Passover, but God seemed to end that by allowing the destruction of the temple in Jerusalem in AD 70.

 For 2000 years, all over the world, Christians have celebrated the death and resurrection of Jesus by the very simple ritual of 'breaking bread' together', usually once a week.
Remembering Jesus is very uplifting. In our lives of disappointment and distress, it is delightful to think about one who did not fail. To remember His death brings grief, but also relief , for it is in the design of God that forgiveness of sins is granted through His blood shed. It is liberating to remember  that, in His resurrection we have new life, a spiritual life to know God!

It is thrilling to anticipate the fulfilment of His promise – He promised to come a second time, to receive His own people to Himself. And the wonder  of it is, that any person on earth can become one of His own children by receiving Him as Saviour and Lord. (John 1:12)

John McKee

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