Why I Call it “Easter”

 Pastor John Flowers

There I was one sunny Easter morning (sunny Easter mornings are rare in Fargo, so I remember it clearly). The church was filling up with happy people, looking forward to celebrating the Resurrection of Jesus from the dead. I approached a man, greeted him with a handshake and a big smile, and said, “Happy Easter!”


He wasn’t having any of it. He looked at me with a pained squint in his eye, and corrected me. “Pastor,” he said, “Don’t you know it’s ‘Resurrection Day’? ‘Easter’ is a pagan word. You should know better.’”


In my younger days, I was more gracious and patient with this kind of silliness. So I let it pass. But I should have corrected this man’s insensitive boorishness. His attitude was a wet blanket of joy-smothering legalism. I cringe at the possibility that he repeated his nonsense to someone else who might have wished him a Happy Easter that day.


Hey, I don’t have a problem if you want to call Easter “Resurrection Day”. But I DO have a problem if you insist that everyone else do the same, or they are not as godly as you.


Let me explain why I don’t mind saying “Happy Easter”.


1. The supposed pagan root of the word “Easter” is disputed, to say the least. Look it up if you want to. But I wouldn’t bother. See, even if the word “Easter” came from some ancient pagan idol worshipping festival IT DOESN’T MATTER.


Because Jesus owns the name “Easter” now. He bought it with His blood and stamped it with his brand when he burst out of the tomb alive. He crashed the party. He took the spoils of war as a conqueror. He subjected all things to Himself. He plundered it like the ancient Israelites plundered the Egyptians. The word “Easter” means whatever Jesus wants it to mean, and in this cultural moment of time and place, it is the commonly accepted word for celebrating His Resurrection. Jesus defines Easter. A disputed ancient pagan celebration does not define Jesus.


2.The word “Easter” is culturally relevant in this time and place. The word tells a lost world that we are celebrating the Resurrection of Jesus. Easter Sunday remains a

possible entrance point for people in our culture looking for a place to connect. It’s a day when un-churched people might give church a chance.


Insisting on using the name “Resurrection Sunday” sets up an unnecessary barrier of churchy language that I have to explain and overcome. It’s easier, more efficient, and communicates more clearly to just say, “Would you like to join me for Easter services at church?”


3. If you insist that everyone must call Easter “Resurrection Day” and if they don’t, they are compromising with paganism and corrupting the Gospel, you’re a goober. Now, don’t get me wrong. I love goobers, and I even AM a goober in some ways. But let’s not bring our gooberyness into the Body of Christ. It makes a big goobery mess. Don’t play spiritual “gotcha” games with your brothers and sisters, as if you have some vital thing figured out, and they need to be enlightened. Paul calls this


morbid interest in controversial questions and disputes about words, out of which arise envy, strife, abusive language, evil suspicions, 1 Timothy 6:4


When it comes right down to it, every Sunday is Resurrection Day. We call the day “Sunday” because it’s culturally convenient. It’s not a sin to call the first day of the week “Sunday”, and it’s not a sin to call our special annual celebration of the Resurrection “Easter”. It’s not going to make anyone embrace paganism. It’s not going to compromise the Gospel.


Jesus rocked the first believers to the very core of their beings when He proved Himself alive again on the first day of the week. The experience of Jesus Alive revolutionized every waking moment of their lives. Believers have been commemorating that moment every “Sunday” for almost 2,000 years now.


So Happy Easter!

Easter Week Schedule:  

Wednesday (March 28th) Fellowship meal & Communion 6 pm

Good Friday Service  (March 30th)  7 pm

Easter Sunday Service   (April 1st)  10:30 am  



Dr. John  Debbie

    Please join us....

   Family night: Wednesdays

     Join us for a meal at 6pm with

    Bible studies for all ages at 6:45pm

   Worship with us...

      Sundays  10:30am   What to expect? 




© 2018 Living Hope Baptist Church
Connected Sound - Websites for the Barbershop Community