Is Jesus a liar? ďOf course not!Ē we immediately respond. Jesus is the way, the TRUTH and the life! Then why is it that Jesus himself said he would be dead three days and three nights and yet the church insists on teaching that he died on Friday and rose again on the Sunday? According to even the most basic mathematical equation that is only two days and two nights. To suggest anything other is to perform amazing theological gymnastics.
A simple Google search or flick through an encyclopaedia can reveal that it wasnít until 300 years after Christ died and rose again that the church began to celebrate Easter. In a nutshell Constantine didnít like the Jews and he himself had a pagan background so he lead the way in replacing the true celebration of Christís death and resurrection, the Passover, with the celebration of the Queen of Heaven, Ishtar (sounds a lot like Easter).
Nowhere in the Scriptures does God condone or even ignore the replacing of acceptable worship to the Most High and Holy God with worship of false gods. Yet there are many examples of Godís wrath, judgement and anger when Israel would swap or adapt a pagan practice and apply it to Yahweh. Is God still the same yesterday, today and tomorrow?
He is the same, and it is staggering to attempt to understand why we as a church are satisfied with an empty, inaccurate and false celebration of the most profound event in all of history. From the fall to the cross Godís plan was for the redemption of all mankind. Godís passionate love for his creation determined a plan to rescue every person from the grip of sin and death. His plan was to send his one and only Son to die upon the cross to satisfy the wages of sin.
This event was foreshadowed in the first Passover. The sin of Egypt had to be paid for with the blood of the firstborn sons. The only way of escape was for the household to be covered by the blood of the lamb. Before Jesus even began his ministry John the Baptist recognised him as the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world (John 1:29). Jesus is the Passover lamb and we are covered by his blood, it is this alone that saves us from our sins.
To explore the Scriptures and discover the layers and richness of meaning in the both the first and second Passovers is a faith-building and love-increasing exercise. The church has continued to perpetuate the lie that Constantine and the Church of the 3rd and 4th centuries began. Jesus did not die on Friday and rise again on Sunday. Study the Word of God and you will discover that he was put to death as the Passover lambs were being sacrificed. John 18:28 makes it clear that the Pharisees wanted to remain clean so they could eat the Passover that evening.
Jesus was the ultimate and final Passover lamb. He was crucified on Passover and the following day was a High Sabbath, not a Saturday Sabbath. Remember that the day begins at sunset for the Jewish people. Jesus died at sunset, the beginning of a new day on a Wednesday evening. He was then laid in the grave and remained there Wednesday, Thursday and Friday night, Thursday, Friday, Saturday day which is 3 days and 3 nights. As night fell on the Saturday a new Jewish day began. All of the gospel accounts have the women or disciples arriving at the empty tomb early on the Sunday morning. It is empty because Jesus is already risen! He rose at the start of the Jewish day, Saturday evening, but no-one discovered that fact until the morning.
We also know from the gospels that the women had to buy spices for the burial. If Jesus died on the Friday as the church wants to believe, they would not have been able to buy anything as the Sabbath would have already begun. To read the account as it is written clearly says that the women bought the spices and yet also rested on the Sabbath (Mark 16:1-2, Luke 23:54-56). As in every Passover there are two Sabbaths unless it falls on a Saturday. During this particular year the High Sabbath was the Thursday.
These are just a few of the facts that highlight the glaringly obvious falsities that the church upholds as worship to the Most High and Holy God. Perhaps this year it would be appropriate to repent before the Lord and worship him the way he has instructed, in Spirit and in TRUTH! It is time for the church to arise, to be cleansed and to seek and teach the truth despite the traditions of hundreds and even thousands of years.
God is gracious and is giving the church a wake up call. He wants us to celebrate the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, but not with adapted false worship to the Queen of Heaven. He has a celebration for us to partake in that is deep and meaningful and rich in love. Letís devote ourselves to our amazing God with all of our hearts and mind and soul and strength this year by honouring him in a way that is worthy, in the way he demands, not the way we think is Ďnice.í Letís read and know the Word of God, letís take God seriously. The apostles didnít celebrate Easter, they observed the Passover. The church for the first 300 years didnít celebrate Easter, they observed Passover. Jesus is not a replacement for the Queen of Heaven or any other Babylonian form of worship. He is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords! He is the Passover Lamb!