The heart of Christianity is the celebration of Jesus’ death and resurrection in the season called Easter.
On Good Friday we remember that Jesus died on the cross and that His death purchased the redemption of everyone who puts their faith in Him.
On Easter Sunday we celebrate the most amazing fact of history- Jesus is no longer dead, but He is alive. Not alive in a diminished “living dead” kind of way but in a new enhanced kind of way.
The Christian conviction is that followers of Jesus will also be raised to eternal life, to a new life with Christ.
From the earliest days of the church Christians have celebrated this reality. The period from the evening of Holy Thursday through to Easter Sunday was called the “Great Three Days.” New converts were baptised on Easter morning to enter their new life on the very day that Christ was raised to life. In time the Easter season was stretched to cover the full 50 days to Pentecost- after all this is a big fact worth celebrating to the max!
Some people don’t like the celebration of Easter because of its similarities to pagan myths. For example, there is a belief that the Old Testament person Nimrod became a false god and was worshipped in the Ancient Near East because after his death some people claimed he had come back to life in the form of his illegitimate son. They also say that Christmas is pagan becasue it is the celebration of Nimrod’s birth not Jesus’.
The existence of false celebrations does not make the real thing false. In science it is said that “correlation does not imply causation”- in other words, the fact that two different things seem related it doesn’t necessarily mean that one causes the other.
Let me ask you this. Does the existence of fake $20 notes mean that you should reject real $20 notes?
The presence of false resurrection myths should not stop us celebrating the real thing.
I will kick up my heels and sing praises to God and proclaim the ancient truth:
Christ has died
Christ is risen
Christ will come again