Easter time! Spring, new life, and hope of brighter days ahead.
Easter is a major event in many church calendars. But the word ‘Easter’ does not actually appear in the Bible. The translators of the 1611 Authorised Version did use it when defining a time when the apostle Peter was in prison:
…[Herod] intending after Easter to bring him forth to the people.Acts 12:4
However, most English translations say ‘Passover’, because that is what the original Greek word means. Jesus was crucified at the time of the Jewish annual festival of Passover. And, more importantly, that was when he rose from the dead to live for ever.
We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him.Romans 6:9
The word ‘Easter’ was not used until many years later. And although the dates of Passover and Easter are both worked out using the lunar calendar, they have slightly different rules. So although this year (2022) they coincide, this is not always true.
The resurrection of Jesus is the most important event in our history. Other world-changing events only affect this life. The resurrection of Jesus can affect us for ever.
If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied.But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.1 Corinthians 15:19–20
So those people ‘in Christ’, his true followers, also hope to live for ever; in a transformed world, when he comes back. If they die first, then they too can be raised from the dead. This is the most amazing hope of a new life and a future brighter than we can imagine.