Featured in the March, 2008 Issue of the Ashburn Baptist News
There is no Easter. The word “Easter” does not appear in the Bible. The King James translators trying to convey the meaning to English people in the 17th Century used the word (Acts 12:4), but it does not appear in the original Greek.
The term “Easter” is from the Anglo-Saxon “Eastre” who is the goddess of the Spring (Catholic Encyclopedia). Easter is a pagan term and the name of a pagan goddess.
However, the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ from the dead is a historic fact. We find the record of the resurrection in four credible documents:
Matthew 28, Mark documents: Mathew 28, Mark 16, Luke 24 and
John 20. The apostle Paul cites the resurrection as the foundational fact of Christianity as he explains it and gives its doctrinal significance in
I Corinthians 15.
The preaching of the apostles thumped on the truth of Christ’s resurrection; whether Peter in Jerusalem (Acts 2:31) or Paul in Athens (Acts 17:31), they could not omit this historic fact, which was as offensive then as it is to pagan minds now. The resurrection of Jesus Christ is the very heart of the Christian Gospel as Paul writes, “Now, brothers, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain. For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures,” (I Corinthians 15:1-4).
Vague statements about “the influence of Christ rising from the dead” or “the spirit of Jesus rose” betray not defective doctrine, but blatant unbelief. His influence never died and his spirit never died. Only the body died. By the resurrection of Christ
Christ is meant a literal, physical, bodily resurrection from the dead. This is basic Bible truth. The bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ is at the very core of Christianity.
The historical fact of Christ’s physical resurrection is attested to by pagan Romans (Matthew 28), by hostile Jews (Matthew 28:12-14) and also by bewildered disciples (Luke 24:10-12).
Not for lack of data, documents or details does one fail to believe. The evidence is so abundant that scholarship encourages faith. No one’s intellect keeps him from believing in the risen Redeemer. The problem is moral and practical. You know when you acknowledge His resurrection, then you must concede that He is the very Son of God, the Savior of the world, then you know there is no choice but to repent of sin and commit yourself to Christ as His servant. Hesitancy to yield to Him, who is your only hope, causes you to contend you have other problems.
The fact of the resurrection is accepted by men and women, angels and humans, soldiers and civilians, Jews, Gentiles, friends and foes.
The broken seal, the dislodged stone, the fleeing soldiers, the empty sepulcher, the victorious Savior all witness against you if you refuse Christ.
The empty tomb is Christianity’s most eloquent testimony.