Yesterday was Easter Sunday. In some settings it’s become unrecognizable with the Easter Bunny, egg hunts, and mandatory pastel colors. (Nothing wrong with that, though hopefully the significance of the celebration goes beyond this.)
Of course, there will be this year’s version of the exposé revealing many of the non-Christian roots behind the trappings of Easter. No one denies that other beliefs celebrate this season. What sets Christianity apart is the reason for the celebration.
But beneath the commercialization and traditionalism, Easter remains the most significant Christian celebration because we celebrate the day Jesus rose from the dead – the Resurrection. Here’s a basic gist of what we celebrate every Easter.
1. The Resurrection is true.
Christianity isn’t a faith based on teachings, moral standards, or religious traditions. It’s based on a historical truth: that Jesus, a man who claimed to be the Son of God, was crucified and rose again from the dead. The crucifixion of Jesus is probably the most well-attested historical fact, with sources in the Bible and outside of it all confirming this.
The resurrection of Jesus is the best explanation for the events that followed Jesus’ death. What we know for sure is His followers were convinced He was alive that they were willing to die for it. We also know that the religious and political leaders responsible for His death did not have a body to produce to counter their claims. Jesus’ followers would consistently grow in power in the very place where it would have been easiest to refute them. Best explanation for all the data: He’s alive.
2. The truth of the Resurrection is the validity of our faith.
The Resurrection isn’t just an inspirational come from behind story. It’s the very anchor of Christianity.
And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith. 1 Corinthians 15:14
If it isn’t true, then everything is a waste of time. There’s no point discussing or doing anything else. But because it is true…
3. The truth of the Resurrection gives us hope for this life and the next.
The Resurrection means that nothing we face in this life will have the final say over us. There is hope regardless of our situation because Jesus has beaten death itself. It means that whatever hardship we’re currently going through will only be a brief chapter in our story.
But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man. For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive. 1 Corinthians 15:20-22