Yes, I’m writing a post on why I don’t like Easter. I’ve tried to be quiet and keep my feelings to myself, but I can’t any longer.
Put down the pitchforks and torches. I don’t have anything against celebrating Jesus’ death and resurrection. His love and sacrifice is the reason I’m even alive today. I thank Him every day for what He did for me.
And that’s my problem with Easter. God never told us to create a holiday in honor of Christ’s resurrection (or birth, for that matter). The Jews had a festal celebration of Passover. The pagans had a festal celebration for the vernal equinox. We just couldn’t be left out, could we? “I know, Easter!” someone said. The problem is that Jesus death and resurrection – the very thing we celebrate – put an end to the need for religious observation. The veil that separated God and man was torn, and we no longer needed religious ritual to serve God.
Listen to what Paul says in Galatians 4,
But now after you have known God, or rather are known by God, how is it that you turn again to the weak and beggarly elements, to which you desire again to be in bondage? You observe days and months and seasons and years.
Jesus freed us from the need for religious ritual, but we went running right back to it. They weren’t sufficient to bring man to God then, and they are not now. We no longer need a “Holy Week,” Jesus died to make every day holy. We no longer need a festal celebration to honor Him, we honor Him every day in how we live our lives.
And if it’s a celebration of His death and resurrection you want, Jesus already gave us two, and commanded us to keep them: baptism and communion. These can be celebrated every time we get together, every day of our lives.
“But what’s wrong with a holiday?” you ask. I’ll give you three reasons it’s wrong”
- It lessens the importance of every other day. Instead of celebrating Christ’s sacrifice by changing the way I live, Easter gives me an “easy out”.
- It gives unbelievers and incorrect view of what following Christ is all about. They see our emphasis on religious tradition and not on the call to “die daily.”
- All those good people wearing their fancy Easter outfits further divides us from the poor, the outcasts and the sinners. They already feel out of place among us, and the elaborate dress and ritual further serves to drive a wedge between “us” and “them.”
We are losing the battle, my friends. Look around. Christianity is not growing, it’s shrinking. The world knows most of what we call Christianity has become a weak and powerless bunch of religious ritual, and we have played right into their hands. We serve a Savior who scorned the religious elite in favor of the meek and humble. We serve a Savior who hangs on a cross and asks us to join Him. We serve a Savior who has promised the same power that raised Him from the dead to empower us to change the world.
Instead we have traded it for a holiday and a chocolate bunny.