We have arrived in April and we find ourselves on the eve of Easter, a date so important to us in which we commemorate the greatest act of love in all history. I was thinking throughout this week about how people celebrate this milestone. I believe that many families have the habit of getting together and having a special lunch, in the case of Christians, we go to church and we also have a special service, we eat in memory of the sacrifice of our Lord.
Despite this, I feel that Easter does not get the same attention as, for example, Christmas for many people. I believe that this happens because of the commercialization of this date, society has made this period extremely commercial, with the famous Easter eggs (which every year get more expensive) and bunnies.
I know that at Christmas we also have symbols and man-made traditions, but especially at Easter I see this directly affecting children who are still learning about the word of God. So today I want to bring here the real story of Easter.
The first Easter
This year everyone will celebrate this moment with their families in seclusion, due to the Pandemic and did you know that the first Easter was also like this? I would like to begin by saying that Passover (in Hebrew Pessach) means “Passage”. Which in turn has an even deeper meaning.
In Moses’ time the people of Israel, who descended from Jacob, Isaac and Abraham, were slaves in the land of Egypt. The Lord had already told how the whole process would be when He made a covenant with the patriarch Abraham:
Genesis 15:13-14, “Then the Lord said to him, “Know for certain that for four hundred years your descendants will be strangers in a country not their own and that they will be enslaved and mistreated there. But I will punish the nation they serve as slaves, and afterward they will come out with great possessions”.
We all know well the punishment and the story of the ten plagues that came upon Egypt. And just to put it into context for those who don’t know, the Lord severely punished the people who enslaved the nation of Israel. Until he finally delivered them from the forced labor of four hundred years.
The last punishment and the worst of all plagues was the death of every firstborn among the Egyptian citizens, from the son of the poorest servant to that of Pharaoh. The instruction God gave Moses was that every Israelite family should sacrifice a lamb that night and use the blood to mark the doorposts.
Then, the angel of death would pass through Egypt and take the life of every firstborn, unless they had the mark of the lamb’s blood on their houses, as God had commanded.
From this, Pharaoh decided to free the people. God then commanded Moses to instruct all Israel that from generation to generation this occasion should be commemorated. God’s passage through Egypt. As well as the passage from slavery to freedom or, in a symbolic way, from death to life.
Easter after the death and resurrection of Christ
After thousands of years of the people’s liberation, the Passover continued to be celebrated. Jesus was a Jew, a descendant of Abraham, so he also followed all the traditions of the people of Israel. So much so that he celebrated the Passover with his disciples on the occasion we remember today as the Holy Supper.
The most interesting point in all this is that similar to what happened years before in the land of Egypt, Jesus gave himself up as a lamb so that his blood would mark everyone who believes in his sacrifice and purpose until the end of time.
So the situation is identical, except that Jesus was God Himself in the form of a man. And that the value of his blood free from any sin was enough to deliver us from death.
Now that we have delved into the history of Easter, I would like to remind you that our celebration should revolve around this great event. Jesus died for you and me, to give us eternal life. Without it we would still be condemned to death, but Christ brought deliverance and is worthy of all honor and glory.
We no longer have to make blood sacrifices for our forgiveness, but have free access to our God. With his resurrection everything was made new and we cannot forget or overlook the greatest act of love in all of history.
So, may this Easter be more than just a holiday or a day of giving chocolate, but may it be an impactful day in our faith and relationship with the Lord, remembering that in Him is our hope even though we are in such a difficult time.
God bless you!
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