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What is Easter Really About and Why Celebrate it?

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All Scripture references come from the King James Version of the Holy Bible (KJV)."

With Easter coming, it’s an appropriate time to ask what is Easter really about.  Much of the world celebrates a pagan Easter, with Easter bunnies, colored eggs, yellow peeps, and candy.  Yet most of us understand that Jesus is the reason for this day.

When I was a child, we were taught that if you were a good person, you would go to Heaven when you die. We celebrated Easter by decorating eggs and getting Easter baskets with lots of presents. There was a huge family gathering and very early in my childhood, we got new clothes and went to church.  

My early days of Easter celebrations were more about the fact it was a holiday.  It was never about the true meaning of this very special reason that we celebrate. It wasn’t until I met my future husband that I learned about Christ’s truth and what the true spiritual meaning of Easter is really about.

What is Easter really about?

Easter celebrates the resurrection of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, from the dead.   Jesus was crucified by the Romans at Calvary in 33 AD.  He was nailed to the cross to pay the debt for our sins. As described in the Bible, Jesus was buried for three days and brought himself back from the dead.

His resurrection proved His victory over death.  Because of this victory, we know (those of us who have accepted His perfect gift of salvation) that we can have everlasting life with Him in Heaven.

Yes, we can have everlasting life forever with Him in Heaven when we pass from this life, as long as we believe and accept Him as our Savior.  We all know John 3:16 KJV which says “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him shall not perish, but have everlasting life”.  

However, make sure you pull out your Bibles and read the entire third chapter of John and Romans 10:9-10 KJV which says “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation”.

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Easter in the Bible

The word Easter is mentioned in the Bible only once, and that is in Acts.  

“And when he had apprehended him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four quaternions of soldiers to keep him; intending after Easter to bring him forth to the people”. Acts 12:4 

This verse refers to the time that Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ was arrested by King Herod.  Herod killed James, another apostle of Jesus, and then arrested Peter.  Herod was also planning to kill Peter.

Yes, it mentions Easter.  However, Easter is translated as the word Pascha, which means Passover.  Passover is a feast that the Jews celebrated every year as a memorial of God’s rescue of His people from Pharoah and Egyptian slavery.(See Exodus 11 for the story.)  The angel of death had passed over only those homes that had blood on their doorposts. 

What is Passover?

Exodus 12 describes the process whereby in order to avoid the judgment of Egypt, Jews had to kill a pure, firstborn lamb and paint their doorposts with its blood.  

Exodus 12:12-14 says For I will pass through the land of Egypt this night, and will smite all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment: I am the Lord.  And the blood shall be to you for a token upon the houses where ye are: and when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and the plague shall not be upon you to destroy you when I smite the land of Egypt. And this day shall be unto you for a memorial, and ye shall keep it a feast to the Lord throughout your generations; ye shall keep it a feast by an ordinance for ever.

According to Bibleinfo.com “A brief history of Easter tells us that the name “Easter” comes from the Anglo-Saxon, Eostre, the name of the goddess of spring. Bunnies are symbols of fertility, while eggs were seen as pagan symbols of death and life”. Eggs symbolize rebirth and renewal.  Bunnies, because of their notoriety about reproduction have been brought into the picture.  

So certainly there is a lot of pagan influence in the celebration of Easter. There is absolutely no reference to bunnies, chicks, or eggs mentioned in the Bible in reference to Christ’s resurrection.

What is Easter really about? It's not bunnies or eggs. It's about our precious lamb of God, Jesus Christ! #JesusisLord #HappyResurrectionDay Click To Tweet

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When Does Easter Take Place?

Easter takes place on the first Sunday after the full moon which happens on or after March 21st.  Easter from the root word “east” means dawn which is where the sun rises in the east. Then we have to talk about Good Friday, which according to the calendar, is always the Friday before Easter Sunday. Good Friday celebrates the actual crucifixion date of our Lord.  

Yet it brings into question whether we should even celebrate this particular day on a Friday. If Jesus was crucified on Friday, then spent 3 nights buried in the tomb for 3 days and 3 nights, it makes more sense that His crucifixion took place on Wednesday or Thursday. But only God knows. Here is a great article that addresses the age-old question, on what day was Jesus crucified?

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Why Do We Celebrate Easter?

Matthew 28:6 says He is not here: for he is risen, as he said.  

We celebrate His glorious resurrection and victory over death. If Christ did not have victory over His death in the resurrection, there would be no way the rest of us could look forward to an everlasting future life with Him in Heaven.  The Gospel of Christ all hangs on the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

We raised our children to believe in the true Easter spiritual meaning.  As Christians, every day is a day to celebrate the resurrection of our Lord, Jesus Christ.  My children colored eggs and received Easter baskets and new clothes to wear to church.  The bunny was a cute animal and the egg hunt was just a fun game we played this time of year.

Things to be Thankful For

We have so much to be thankful for.  Because of the true meaning of Easter, and Christ’s resurrection, I want to remind you of a few things. God loved us so much that He sent His only begotten Son to die for us. Jesus left His heavenly home on the right side of God to come to earth as a baby.  He lived as a man and He died with the sins of all of mankind on His shoulders. Can you even imagine the kind of love that would take?

Speaking of love, we say that we love our spouse, our kids, and our dog.  But even knowing how much I love my family, I still can’t imagine the love of Christ.  Can you? God has unconditional love for us! I am so thankful for that beautiful and wonderful love.

Our wonderful, loving heavenly Father has blessed us with our families, our jobs, and our homes.  We may have worries and illnesses and sadness in our lives.  Compared to the reason we are celebrating the true Easter spiritual meaning, those things are minimal.

I hope you can see that and open your heart just a little more for your neighbor and the grumpy cashier at Walmart.  If you want some Bible reminders for happiness, joy, or inspiration, check out these  Inspiring Bible verses for Happiness and Joy. You may also enjoy these Bible verses for inspiration.

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By simply confessing our sins and asking Jesus to save our souls, we can have everlasting life in Heaven with Him.  We can have the forgiveness of all of our sins. Yes, even the big ones, friends. It doesn’t matter what you’ve done.   By simply asking, repenting, and believing, you can be forgiven.

Please remember the reason that we celebrate this holiday. It was never about bunnies and eggs. Those symbols are pagan Easter traditions. The next time you ask yourself, what is Easter really about, just remember that this is the day that we celebrate Resurrection Day! Praise our glorious Lord!

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  1. You are so right, every day is a day to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ. His victory over death is the whole Gospel that we should proclaim daily with our lives.

  2. Beautiful explanation. You truly unwrapped Easter here and the history of it. I was so excited this year to teach my children the true meaning of Easter.

    1. Thank you, Brittany. I’m so glad you’ll be sharing the true meaning of Easter with your kids. What a wonderful blessing for all of you.

  3. This is awesome! I found myself having a similar conversation (why the eggs and bunnies) with my kids this year.

  4. When it comes to knowing what is Easter really about, youve explained it beautifully!

    And the timing of Easter is often confusing to those of us in the western world. But since Passover follows the lunar calendar, it makes more sense.

    I have always been taught that in Bible times, any portion of a day counted as a day, so Friday afternoon, 1. Saturday 2, Sunday morning, 3. They had to bury him quickly because of the sabbath/Passover, but came back hoping to finish the preparation early the morning after the holy day.

    I hope that frames the other side of the question ? having known someone else who is convinced that the crucifixion was on Wednesday, I know that it can be a touchy subject!

    1. Thank you Aryn. Glad I could explain what Easter is about. Yes, I know the timing can be confusing. I have also heard that they went by 12-hour days, although that doesn’t explain the 3 days and 3 nights of burial. I guess we will know for sure when we get to heaven.

  5. I loved this Wendy! I learned so much with this post and for the first time in 56 years, it all makes sense. Thank you for this enlightenment! I hope you had a glorious and blessed Easter.

  6. I was finally able to answer my son about why there were bunnies and eggs! I feel like it is important to know the history as well as what Easter is about. Thanks for taking the time to write this post, I’ll be saving this one ?

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