This Easter many believers are going to be celebrating a festival they know very little about or the meaning of it.
Our collective behaviour is very sheepish, that’s because our leaders are being lead by ungrounded religious doctrines and ideologies. Believers are stuck doing religious activities but miss the Kingdom, not that our preaching and conversation do not highlight the Kingdom in some form but the reality of it is absent in practice and observation.
Some of the traditions and western festivals have their origins in the covenants but are mingled with paganism and religious traditions. What Easter is meant to celebrate is meaningful but our celebration of it is now a waste of time, energy and lacks productivity (fruitfulness).
Many references states that “Easter is the most important and oldest festival of the Christian Church, celebrating the resurrection of Christ and held (in the Western Church) between 21 March and 25 April, on the first Sunday after the first full moon following the northern spring equinox”.
The earliest practice of celebrating Easter was held on the month of Nisan on the 14th day, of the Hebrew calendar, which is called 'the LORD's passover' (Leviticus 23:5). The fixed date of April 25 came about because of dissatisfaction and debates with the over reliance on the Jewish calendar to determine what date early believers were to celebrate the death and resurrection of Christ.
The link between the death and resurrection of Christ (which is what Easter is all about and the Passover that the Jews celebrate,) has been expounded upon by many authors, showing Christ as our Passover. “The holiday of Pesach, or Passover, celebrates God's freeing the Jews from bondage in Egypt through the leadership of Moses. Passover begins on the 15th day of Nissan, the first month of the Jewish calendar.
It usually takes place in April, and may be the single holiday most widely celebrated among Jews. In 2015, Passover will begin at sundown on April 3rd. The Passover festival is celebrated for seven days in Israel, and eight days in other countries.” -
The key differences between the Jewish holiday of the Passover and the Christian holiday of Easter, is that one is associated with national identity and the other is associated with religious activity.
In this period we must concentrate with understanding the importance of these festivals as it relates to the kingdom of God, which then will give us a nationalistic perspective rather than a religious one.
Christ’s death and resurrection has so much meaning to it in terms of its national impact for Israel and the previously uncircumcised (foreigners). The following shows us our past state “remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ. - Ephesians 2:12-13.
The blood in these verses points to the death and resurrection of Christ, which was the process used to give us our citizenship within the Kingdom. It is important to see that believers had a similar experience to Israel in terms of the Exodus out of Egypt. The Exodus out of Egypt was a foreshadow of the process of naturalisation within the Kingdom of God. Paul’s statement in Colossians 1:13 shows this, “For He has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the Kingdom of the Son He loves”.
It is important for us to see the impact of the Kingdom in everything and understand that it is for citizenship that Christ gave His life so as to acquire for God a people who will have the right of citizenship. If our celebration of Easter and passover is not consistent with this then we are depriving ourselves of the reason He died and resurrected.
There are two ways that I know citizenship can be acquired, one is by birth and the other is by purchasing it. Within the Kingdom one has to go through the two processes to acquire citizenship, which is why we have to be born again and why a price had to be paid for it.
The price of our citizenship within the kingdom is the Son of God and the currency that is used to purchase our citizenship is the blood of Christ. John 3:16 shows us the price and the Revelation 5:9 shows us the currency or method of payment. When celebrating Easter or Passover let us have in mind the price it cost the Father and the currency used to give us our citizenship.
ALLELUIA! SING THE TRIUMPH
Alleluia! Lord, we hail Thee,
Join the chorus of the skies,
And with angels and archangels
Bid the hymn of praise arise.
Alleluia! praise and glory,
Laud, thanksgiving, honor, might,
Worship, blessing, adoration,
To the Victor Infinite. - E. Mabel Dawson
He who has an ear, let him hear.