Rabbits or Resurrection?

cross-eyed-focusEaster will soon be upon us.  It is good to be reminded of why we celebrate it.  As I understand it,  Easter is a Holy Day not just a holiday.  It is a time to reflect on God’s ultimate sacrifice of one man to reconcile us all back to Himself.

Return with me back to the First Century where it all began.  It is a time of tumult as Rome is grappling with a movement, ‘ The Way’ that’s put fear into the Roman soul.  The Emperor Nero is lighting his garden with believers thrust upon stakes lit aflame.  The leader Jesus crucified and all his followers being persecuted and arrested as Caesar “crushes the rebellion”.  The term “Christian” meaning little Christ ones, was a Roman act of scorn and ridicule.

All the while Hebrews are remembering the time when the angel of Death ‘passed over’ their blood-covered doorposts sparing theirs but killing all others first-born.  To this day Jewish people celebrate this night of deliverance called Passover. This event is well documented by the historians of the day including Josephus.

Doesn’t it then seem silly and insulting to their sacrifices to bring this victory of God Almighty down to a story of chocolate eggs and bunnies?  So how did this happen?

The Emperor Constantine’s idea was to placate the Romans, Greeks, Jews and the Christian cultures declaring a holiday dated after Passover, combining symbols of fertility of rabbits and eggs to satisfy the Greeks and crosses for the Christian.

In Judaism Passover’is celebrated with a Seder dinner.  Each food symbolic of their deliverance from Egypt.  Remember the Name Jew in Hebrew means “Remembrance and Worshiper of God”.  So all throughout Judaism is symbols reminiscent of the times God healed, provided and delivered them.  Scripture states that they, the Jewish people are the natural vine. We Christians are the wild vine having been grafted in.

So if the Jewish people (called in the Bible as the  natural vine) were blinded for our sakes,  so we could partake in Gods deliverance of our sins through the Cross.  Shouldn’t we make this Holy Day of Easter one of remembrance, solemnity, humility and a grateful heart, that we can reap the benefits their sowing of sorrow gave us.

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