He Is Always Risen

Today, around the world, is what is commonly known as “Easter Sunday.”

Don’t worry–no lectures from me today on the origins of the word “Easter” (well I mean yes, it’s pagan, but you can probably just browse your Facebook news feed to hear about that), nor will I browbeat you on your choice to celebrate the Resurrection of the Lord on a day that is slightly different than the actual anniversary of His Resurrection.

I am not a celebrator of pagan things, in fact there are many worldly practices that derive from quasi-pagan origins that I adamantly oppose. I just feel like that point has been adequately made by many before me, so that’s not what I’m here to say today.

What you need to know today is that if you are gathering together with the Body of Christ today to commemorate His Victory over sin and death, you are celebrating the greatest Victory of all humanity!

And I won’t fault you for that.

Cyclical vs. Eternal Events 

I do, however, have an issue with the spirit of many types of cultural traditions that some aspects of Easter Sunday are derived from.

The thing is, many pagan holidays that coincide with seasonal changes, like Osatara/”Easter”, celebrate cycles.

I used to practice Wicca when I was a young girl, and I took particular interest in the annual cycle that pagans celebrated. In Spring, fertility and birth are celebrated, in many cultures, as the earth awakens from its winter slumber.

It is easy to see why the ancient traditions of the pagans and the Christian celebration of the Resurrection of Christ began to blur together at some point in history, whatever the real history of that is because Christ’s resurrection taking place in springtime coincides with the “rebirth” of the earth.

That being said, it is celebrating this as a cyclical occurrence that I find to be heretical. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with commemorating His resurrection, however…

It is incredibly important to realize that it is not a cycle that we celebrate. Christ only rose once.

Our Victory has been won! He does not die, to rise again, every year, as the pagan gods do. His Resurrection was the ultimate Victory over death, that happened once and for all, and we can always rely upon this.

It’s cliche, I know, but today we celebrate what we must celebrate equally every day of the year! Every trial we face, every inkling of fear we experience, every opportunity for ministry we are presented with; we must celebrate this Victory, and live it every single day.

He lives, today and for all of eternity. And He will return!

The same Jesus Christ who walked the earth 2000 years ago lives today, and His Spirit dwells in us on earth. Getting caught up on arguments of which day is which, and how we ought to honor His Resurrection best, can be a snare. Be careful not to negate our brothers and sisters as they glory in this Great Victory. The Spirit that dwells in all of us will ultimately dictate our conduct, and if He is with you, His fruits will be evident. So you might find yourself straying far from the leadership of His Spirit today as you argue with other Christians online about the fruitfulness of celebrating Resurrection today.

In the past, I’ve been negative about “Easter”, and this Sunday, and the way others choose to celebrate it. I’m not perfect, and I’m not saying I condone every aspect of what has become a largely worldly and often times even heretical annual ritual.

But this year, I simply stand in awe of what it is that we remember this day. I can’t even conceive what a price He paid for me, and the battle He fought and won for me. And I am so grateful for my brothers and sisters who form the Body together with me.

So while I don’t necessarily condone every aspect of this holiday, I know that many are genuinely worshipping and celebrating Christ.

Let Him live on, through us, and let His Spirit rule in our hearts, today and always. This doesn’t happen once a year, but it has been true for thousands of years, and will continue on for eternity. And remember…

Christ is always risen! 

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5 Comments:

  1. My sentiments exactly! It is so nice to know that there are Christians who are waking up to the kind of pagan nonsense that goes on at this time of year and masquerades as “Christianity.”! Like you, I am grateful EVERY DAY that our Lord rose from the dead and is coming back! Maranatha!

  2. You are unfortunately misinformed with regard to the “pagan” origins of Easter.

    The English word “Easter” is not, in fact, derived from the name of the Anglo-Saxon goddess Eostre: it is derived instead from an old name for the month of April, Eosturmonaþ (see Bede) – Eosturmonaþ translates just to “eastern month,” referring to the position of the sun in the sky in early spring. Nothing to do with any goddesses, or, in effect, any paganism, no more than backglossing the word “April” indicates that using the word “April” in English demands that it is necessarily a month for worshipping a pre-Roman Etruscan deity. Words are more than their etymological origin.

    There is no extant textual or archaeological evidence indicating that the modern Easter feast, wherever it is celebrated, contains elements from pre-Christian pagan rituals. The paschal feast was celebrated around this time as early as the mid-2nd century AD (see Melio of Sardis writing on his family’s spring pascha feast, dating from 180 AD, indicating that his family had done so for many years). Eggs have been used in early Christian and Jewish feasting holidays for thousands of years: there’s an egg on the Passover table for a reason. Passover does not celebrate a cyclical holiday and never has. There’s no reasonable evidence that the inclusion of rabbits in Easter iconography has to do with paganism. Easter happens in spring. Rabbits appear in spring. That’s it.

    Easter isn’t cyclical unless you are reading into it a pagan origin that does not exist. Celebrating Easter with one’s church or worship community is not going to be pagan at all because it’s not a pagan holiday and the trappings around it are not pagan.

    You might have problems over the dating, or with associated mainstream culture materialism, but trust me, no person who believes in Christ believes that they are celebrating a cyclical pagan-influenced rising-dying-god feast.

    It’s honestly very rude for you to assume that all Christians who choose to celebrate Easter weekend are foolishly backsliding into paganism or ignoring the miracle of eternal Christ the rest of the year. They aren’t.

    • friscogirlinhana@gmail.com

      It’s honestly quite rude for you to put words in my mouth and respond to a point I’m not even making. You clearly didn’t read the article very carefully and also missed the entire point I was making. This lecture would be better suited towards an article aimed at making the point you’re refuting.

      I celebrate the Resurrection and plainly stated I fault no Christian for doing so, either. What I celebrate is that my God is NOT a pagan God that dies and rises again each year, as I did when I was a pagan. If you read the article again you’d see that. It never ceases to amaze me how much people have to say about what they assume someone else is saying, rather than taking the time to understand someone else’s nuanced point.

      But I get it. Unfortunately, these days, everyone wants to paint everything as entirely black and white so you’re probably just assuming I’m like those who make the same tired argument I myself am bored of.

      • “I do, however, have an issue with the spirit of many types of cultural traditions that some aspects of Easter Sunday are derived from.

        The thing is, many pagan holidays that coincide with seasonal changes, like Osatara/”Easter”, celebrate cycles.

        I used to practice Wicca when I was a young girl, and I took particular interest in the annual cycle that pagans celebrated. In Spring, fertility and birth are celebrated, in many cultures, as the earth awakens from its winter slumber.

        It is easy to see why the ancient traditions of the pagans and the Christian celebration of the Resurrection of Christ began to blur together at some point in history, whatever the real history of that is because Christ’s resurrection taking place in springtime coincides with the “rebirth” of the earth.

        That being said, it is celebrating this as a cyclical occurrence that I find to be heretical.”

        I’m sorry if I misinterpreted this, but right here I’m reading that you yourself said that “it is celebrating this as a cyclical occurrence that I find to be heretical” and associated it with pagan ritual.

        My point was that no Christian celebrates the resurrection as a cyclical holiday, and thus your point about heretical practice is completely unnecessary, as it unfoundedly accuses other Christians of both bringing completely nonexistent paganism (Wiccans, for the record, have a very bad grasp on the history of religion and tend to claim pagan holidays influenced Christianity – this is, in 99% of cases, absolutely untrue) into their celebration of the Resurrection and not considering Christ’s majesty on all other days. I find that to be very unfair.

        I apologize if I seemed to be putting words in your mouth, but I feel my reading was fair, and I was upset by it.

        • friscogirlinhana@gmail.com

          I see, that does make sense that you drew that conclusion from that passage. However, I was speaking to the notion that many hold that Easter *originated* in pagan traditions, the whole Christ myth fallacy. This is something I was raised with and so for many years this was my perspective. That being said, never did I say all Christians celebrate a cyclical Resurrection, and in the same vein, you can’t actually say that NO Christians do. I am not aware of this belief but we have to be honest about the many pagan/heretical beliefs that many Christian (or “Christian”) churches hold. Catholics believe in the transubstantiation, after all. I still maintain that I believe the purpose of my article was clear, that I don’t condemn the celebration of Resurrection once a year at all, and explicitly stated that was the opposite of the intention of my article. I was expressing my joy in the historic victory of the Resurrection that happened once, juxtaposed with pagan gods who supposedly die and rise each year. At least I thought I was being clear haha. I’ll definitely try to make sure I can address such nuanced topics more clearly in the future.

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