If you were to do a word association quiz about Easter for today’s man (or, to be politically correct, for today’s person on the street) what sort of responses might you expect? The culturally correct person would say things like egg hunts, bunnies, and chocolate eggs. Some would say new clothes and going to church. Still others might speak of spiritual renewal and the hope of Spring. Some might even mention that Easter marks the day that Jesus Christ was raised from the dead. But the association that would be the most important consideration would be, “What difference does Easter make in your life?” This question places everything in perspective. The new clothes and the eggs and the bunnies are all things we can do without, but the true meaning of Easter, the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, is something that no one can live without.
Fortunately, we don’t have to ask the Apostle Paul for his thoughts, because he has already told us! Listen to what he says about the resurrection of Christ, in I Corinthians 15:13-19:
13 If there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. 14 And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith. 15 More than that, we are then found to be false witnesses about God, for we have testified about God that he raised Christ from the dead. But he did not raise him if in fact the dead are not raised. 16 For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either. 17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. 18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost. 19 If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are to be pitied more than all men.
As he typically does, Paul gets right to the heart of the matter. In verse 17 he bluntly says that if Christ has not been raised, then our faith is futile and we are still in our sins. Wow! No resurrection, no hope in life! Paul shows just how significant Easter is. Without the resurrection of the dead, our hope would be only for this life. And if our hope is only for this life, then we are pitiable and miserable creatures. Christianity without Easter, without the resurrection, is of no value at all, it means that we are to be pitied above all other men. All of what is done by Christians, all of the thinking, all of the attention to living a holy life, all of the theology; all of it is meaningless and futile without the resurrection of Christ.
Nothing else matters. No resurrection—no hope!
Easter does make a difference! It makes a difference to you and your children. With Easter rapidly approaching, it is vital to consider the true meaning of the resurrection. Shepherd Press has just released a new book that will help you and your children focus on the wonder of Easter. The book is Why Easter? by Barbara Reoach.