Mark 16:5-6 | Luke 24:32-34 | 1 Peter 1:3a
Not eggs-actly what you were thinking…
Let’s talk Easter eggs.
But wait… Aren’t they part of the hijacking of our sacred holiday? Not if you consider the egg as a symbol of new life bursting out of hard surroundings. The Easter egg then becomes a beautiful picture of Jesus coming out of the tomb and bringing that new life to us.
When they entered the tomb, they saw a young man clothed in a white robe sitting on the right side. The women were shocked, but the angel said, “Don’t be alarmed. You are looking for Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead! Look, this is where they laid his body.Mark 16:5-6 NLT
When Christians first celebrated the resurrection of Jesus, they did so amidst pagans’ spring celebrations. The egg was already a symbol of fertility in those celebrations. The early believers repurposed it–and the pagan holiday itself–for celebrating Him. If you think about it, they gave the whole celebration new life!
This repurposing is a lot like what happened in the original event itself. After Jesus died, his disciples holed up in a room together, lamenting his death and struggling with their own confusion and doubts about his true identity. It had to be a low point–if not the low point–in each of their lives.
But then word got out that his tomb was empty. And then he appeared to them in person.
They said to each other, “Didn’t our hearts burn within us as he talked with us on the road and explained the Scriptures to us?”Luke 24:32 NLT
Suddenly they knew he was exactly who he claimed to be: God in the Flesh, the Chosen One, Savior of the World. They were immediately transported from their emotional chasm directly to the most majestic mountaintop experience ever. What a turnaround!
And within the hour they were on their way back to Jerusalem. There they found the eleven disciples and the others who had gathered with them, who said, “The Lord has really risen! He appeared to Peter.”Luke 24:33-34 NLT
These days, Easter is again becoming pagan. Sadly–and ironically–the holiday seems more about candy and plush bunny toys than a celebration of the greatest event in the history of mankind.
But you can sanctify it by making it about more than eggs and bunnies. Jesus is God With Us who lived among us and showed his love for us by submitting to death and conquering it on our behalf.
All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is by his great mercy that we have been born again, because God raised Jesus Christ from the dead.1 Peter 1:3a NLT
Our God loves us so much he gave us his only Son. Think about that–and celebrate that–this Easter.
Questions for Group Discussion
- How can an egg be a symbol of new life? Can a bunny be a symbol of new life as well?
- Do you take issue with Easter being about egg hunts, baskets, and the Easter Bunny? Do you take issue with Christmas being about presents and Santa Claus?
- Some people only attend church services on Christmas and Easter. Why do you think that is?
Challenge: Crack the Egg Code
Plenty of people recycle plastic. How many recycle a holiday?
Recycle, reduce, reuse. We do it with our trash. But what if a holiday becomes trashy?
Here is your challenge: recycle and repurpose the Easter holiday to make it all about Christ’s resurrection.
- Start with the Easter Bunny.
- Should he stay or go?
- If he stays, how can he become a symbol that tells the story of Christ’s resurrection?
- If he goes, how do you handle his departure?
- Examine other parts of the holiday. Can these tell the story as well?
- Easter Baskets
- Plastic grass
- Get the help of family and friends. Your family can agree on how they will honor Jesus when they celebrate Easter!
- Try it!