By 10 year-old LP
Easter! Easter is so much fun for everyone; think of all the chocolate and cake, and the eggs that are so often found as a fun prize. People love (and personally, I do too) all the fun in the egg hunts, scouring gardens for any hidden treats.
But do you know why we celebrate Easter? What is it all about? What do the eggs and chocolate represent? What happened in history that made this celebration a national holiday?
The answer lies not in eggs, nor in chocolate, nor does it lie in egg hunts. It lies in the Holy Book of the Christian religion, the Bible. Here’s a brief summary of the story which lies behind the celebration:
- Jesus rode a donkey into town on the Sabbath (now known as Sunday, God’s day of rest). This was called Palm Sunday, for a big crowd welcomed him waving palm branches.
- Jesus and his 12 disciples (followers) spent the Thursday evening sharing the Last Supper; the last meal Jesus had before he died.
- Jesus was arrested while praying in the Garden of Gethsemane and tried before the Pharisees; he was found guilty.
- Jesus was then tested before Pontious Pilate, who was reluctant to kill him, but the crowd shouted so loud that he had to give in. It was Pilate who gave the order to crucify Jesus.
- Jesus was taken up to Golgotha, Place of the Skull; and was forced to carry his own cross up the hill, even after he had been beaten and whipped. He was then nailed to the cross and left to die.
- Afterwards Joseph of Arimathea asked Pilate to take Jesus’ body off the cross; Pilate agreed, and so Jesus’ body was placed inside a tomb and wrapped in linen strips.
- Three days passed. The disciples all thought it was the end. On the day after the Sabbath, Mary, Jesus’ mother, Mary Magdalene and another woman came to the tomb to anoint Jesus’ body with spices and oils, so that the body wouldn’t smell bad. But when they reached the tomb, the stone had been rolled away! The soldiers who had been guarding the tomb were lying on the floor.
- The women looked in and saw that there were only linen strips where Jesus’ body should’ve been! Two of them ran to tell the disciples what had happened. Mary Magdalene stayed by the tomb; she didn’t understand what had happened. She cried because she thought Jesus’ body had been taken. Who would do such a thing?
- As she knelt, a voice behind her sounded. She thought it was the gardener. “Mary.” The voice sounded. She knew at once it was Jesus! She too, ran to tell the other disciples what had happened. This was what happened on Easter Sunday, or Resurrection Sunday.
This story means a lot to Christians, because when Jesus rose from the dead he defeated Death itself. John 3 v 16: ‘For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.’ This means that people who have accepted Jesus into their souls will go to Heaven when they die, and have new souls and bodies. For more information about this, read the last book of the Bible: Revelation. It is through the eyes of John, one of Jesus’ disciples, and tells us what he sees.