Archive for April, 2019

The Coming Easter Celebraton

April 1, 2019

As we approach Holy Week culminating in celebrating the Risen Christ, we must reflect on what this “holiday” means to a vast majority of our citizens. I am afraid Easter has taken second place as hierarchy of modern holidays.
I suspicion that advertisers haven’t found a way to commercialize it as thoroughly as they have commercialized Christmas. But this was not the case with first century believers…Paul declared “that if there is no resurrection of the dead then Christ has not risen. Then our preaching is empty and your faith is also empty ” (1 Corinthians 15: 13-14.
It is important to add that, as Paul saw it , Easter isn’t Easter without the cross. In another passage (Galatians 6:14) he exclaims “God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus”

Traditionally , the week leading up to and culminating in the celebration of Easter. is devoted to the contemplation of what Jesus suffered on the cross. As we prepare for the Resurrection of Jesus Christ, of course we celebrate and give thanks for each and every day That God has given us.  But as we approach this Holy time we celebrate on Palm Sunday, Jesus entering Jerusalem and the people laying palm branches in front of Him. For me this is the time to read the Passion Story. On Thursday , we celebrate what we call Maundy Thursday. Maundy commemorates Jesus foot washing of His disciples as well as the Last Supper. In my tradition we didn’t wash feet (although as pastor I wanted to do this) We did celebrate Holy Communion. On Friday is the day that Jesus was on the cross and we meditate on his pain and suffering.

Holy Saturday  is a quiet time in preparation for the resurrection. All of this is not just a theological exercise. This is the ultimate tenant of the Christian faith. If a person confesses their sins and asks Christ to come into their life, they will be saved by God’s Grace. But Salvation is based on Christ dying on the cross to atone for our sins and being resurrected to eternal life for those who accept his free offer of Grace and will also  be cleansed by the the Blood of Christ and will reside with him in eternity.

This is why Christians world wide celebrate Easter . Why we have celebrations in our churches and with believers everywhere thank God for their redemption and look forward to eternal life. Amen