Easter is an historically evolving thing – beginning with official religious recognition at the church-counsel of Nicea in 325 AD. It was not celebrated by the first century followers of Jesus (especially the bunny and egg part). You will find no mention of Easter in the God Story.
Passover roots in ancient Hebrew worship, with the establishing of the solemn, celebratory observance in Exodus 12 (supposedly around 1500 BC). Passover celebrates belonging to God – having been freshly delivered from Egypt and en-route to the land “flowing with milk and honey.” This was the “beginning of months” for the Jews, celebrating they way they were “passed over” by the destroying angel while still in Egypt (the final plague upon the first born). You will find many mentions of Passover in the God Story.
Abraham was the father of the Hebrews (Jews) and lived about 2000 BC, perhaps around the time of the other-famous Hammurabi (Genesis 12). The Abraham-preceding events of Genesis 1-11 form the basis for the Jewish story – leading to the significance of Passover in all of the human story.
Resurrection day is the celebration of Christ’s well-witnessed resurrection. It occurred in 33 or 34 AD (Hebrew year 3791?).
Here is the resurrection sequence:
– The Jewish prophets prepared the world for the coming Deliverer (see Messianic prophecies)
– Jesus is born and the Kingdom of God comes near (the Kingdom is spoken of over 30 times just in the book of Matthew alone/church is mentioned twice)
– Jesus spends 3-4 years teaching and healing large numbers of people (John 21:24-25)
– Jesus foretells His death and follows through (John 10)
– Jerusalem Jews “from every nation under heaven” are gathered together for Passover (Acts 2:5)
– Jesus is raised from the dead (Matthew 28:1-10; Mark 16:1-14; Luke 24:1-44; John 20:1-29)
– Jesus appears to His followers over a period of forty days (check them out! – Acts 1:3)
– At one point He appears to over 500 people at one time (1 Corinthians 15:6)
– Jesus returns to heaven until He comes in His glory (Luke 24)
After all, Christ is our Passover, not our Easter bunny (1 Corinthians 5:7).
God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM”; and He said, “Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’”
Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was born, I am.”
And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
ENJOY YOUR RESURRECTION EXPERIENCE!