Easter is one of the most important festivals in the Christian calendar. So, it is of utmost importance for everyone to know why do we celebrate Easter. The festive occasion marks the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. According to the New Testament of the Bible, Easter is celebrated three days after Good Friday. It is believed that Jesus Christ died on Good Friday after being crucified and returned once again on Easter Sunday to forgive the sins of his followers.
Easter also concludes ‘Passion of Christ’ that is a holy series of events and holidays. It begins with Lent, which is a fasting period of forty days where people are supposed to pray and offer sacrifices. And, it ended with Holy Week that includes Maundy Thursday, which is also known as the Holy Thursday. It marks the celebration of Jesus’ Last Supper with his 12 Apostles. It is interesting to note that even though Easter is considered one of the most important and significant Christian festivals, its roots go back to pre-Christian and pagan times. Surprising, right? So, let us find out all about Easter, its history, significance and more.
According to the New Testament of the Bible, Jesus Christ was arrested by the Roman authorities. It was done because Jesus claimed to be the ‘son of God’. Jesus was arrested, brutally beaten and dragged by the authorities before ultimately being crucified on a wooden cross to die. His death by crucifixion was ordered by Pontius Pilate, a Roman emperor. However, it is believed that three days after his death, Jesus Christ returned to the planet. He came back to forgive his followers for all their sins and promised them heaven after their death. So, as per Easter history and in the Jewish calendar, it is celebrated as the festival of Passover.
Easter 2021 date is April 4. However, it is to be noted that Easter falls on different dates every year. In western Christianity, Easter falls on a Sunday between March 22 and April 25. It is because western Christianity follows the Gregorian calendar. However, the same is not true with Eastern Orthodox Christianity. It follows the Julian calendar and according to that, Easter falls on a Sunday between April 4 and May 8 every year. It is because, in the Julian calendar, Easter is celebrated on the first full moon that falls on or after the spring equinox. It is also to be noted that Ash Wednesday, Easter Sunday, and Palm Sunday are considered as moveable feasts in the Gregorian calendar.
Easter is celebrated to mark the return of Jesus Christ from the dead. Jesus not only returned after being crucified, but he also blessed his followers, forgave their sins, and offered them a place in heaven after their death. Easter is a joyous occasion that is celebrated with a lot of zeal and happiness. The Sunday right before Easter is known as the Palm Sunday and it marks the arrival of Jesus Christ in Jerusalem. However, many churches across the world start the Easter celebration on Saturday night itself.
They celebrate the festive occasion with a religious service that is known as the Easter Vigil. While the Easter Vigil is a religious celebration, the non-religious celebration includes the tradition of Easter eggs. Easter egg history is all about fertility and birth. These eggs that are filled with chocolates and brightly painted are exchanged and gifted on Easter by people. People also organize treasure hunts where their loved ones have to find the Easter egg in the end. Easter bunny is also a popular tradition where children are delivered with sweets and chocolates on Sunday morning.
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According to a 6th-century author named St. Bede the Venerable, ‘Easter’ drives from the words Eostre or Eostrae. It meant the Anglo-Saxon goddess of Spring and fertility. But, according to other historians, the word ‘Easter’ is derived from in albis. It is a Latin phrase that is the plural of ‘dawn’. In Old High German, it is believed that ‘Easter’ is derived from the word ‘eostarum’, which means a precursor in the English language. Easter’s significance lies in the Christian religion, it has roots in pagan times as well. Easter is celebrated after the pagan Goddess Eostre and is associated with the Jewish holiday of Passover.
According to the Old Testament, it is also associated with the exodus of the Jews from Egypt. The links can be traced back to the Last Supper that was hosted a night before Jesus Christ was arrested. The Last Supper is considered the Passover feast. But, according to the New Testament, the bread or the matzah signifies the body that he shared with 12 apostles. While the cup of wine that they all shared signified his ‘blood’.
The Last Supper is a symbol of the sacrifice that Jesus Christ was about to make for his followers and humanity. It also became the reason for Holy Communion, a Christian ritual, which is one of the most integral parts of the Christian religious services. Additionally, the arrest of Jesus Christ, as well as his execution, are associated with the Jewish Passover as well because it occurred around the same time. That is why Easter is often celebrated close to the Jewish Passover.
There are different Easter traditions across the world and different ways on how to celebrate Easter. In Roman Catholicism and Protestantism, Easter holds great significance. A forty-days period called Lent is observed where people fast from Ash Wednesday. None of the Sundays is included in Lent. The Sunday right before Easter is known as Palm Sunday and it marks the arrival of Jesus Christ in Jerusalem. It is said that when that happened, Jesus’ followers welcomed him by spreading palm leaves on the road, hence the name.
In Eastern Orthodox Christianity, the rituals of Easter starts with the Great Lent. Unlike Ash Wednesday, the Great Lent begins on Clean Monday. It also begins forty days before Easter and does not include any Sundays as well. The last week of the Great Lent is also known as the Palm Week but it ends with Lazarus Saturday. Palm Sunday, on the other hand, marks the beginning of Holy Week that ends on Easter.
Now that you know the importance of Easter, here are more ways to celebrate it.
Easter Wishes: To celebrate the holy occasion, here are some beautiful quotes and greeting on Easter that you can send to your loved ones. After all, what’s better than spreading some positivity by celebrating Easter, one of the most important holidays that celebrates the belief that Christ resurrected from the dead.
Ways To Celebrate Easter: If you’re wondering how to celebrate Easter and make it memorable this year, don’t you worry! We’ve got you covered with some creative ideas to celebrate Easter. Scroll ahead!
Good Friday Messages: Good Friday is also known as the Holy Day and it immediately precedes Easter Sunday. It is traditionally celebrated as the day on which Jesus Christ was executed by crucifixion. Good Friday is observed during the Holy Week, which culminates on Easter Sunday. So, to celebrate the pious day, here are some beautiful quotes and messages that you can send to your loved ones.
How To Celebrate Good Friday: Now that you know the importance of Good Friday, here are some amazing ways to celebrate the day and stay grateful to the almighty for his blessings.
Now that you all know why do we celebrate Easter, we hope you enjoy the holy occasion with gratitude and love. Happy Easter!