Some of my readers may wonder why I have posted nothing specifically about the upcoming holiday, Resurrection Sunday (Easter). It is NOT because we don’t celebrate it and it is not because it is something so Holy that can’t be mentioned. I haven’t had time. Here is my theology, briefly.
Celebrating Resurrection Sunday:
We celebrate Resurrection Sunday in a bit of a different way. First, you may notice that I choose not to call it Easter. That is simply the history of the term and where it came from. Easter is derived from the Saxon goddess Eostre. You can choose to be very militant about this, but by tradition, most cultures speak of Easter as the celebration of Christ’s resurrection from the dead after His crucifixion. I use both terms.
Generally speaking, folks will have a sunrise service to commemorate or hammer home the remembrance of Jesus’s early rising from the grave. If you remember, He was already gone when the ladies came to the tomb early in the morning, Sunday.
Now we in the Reformed tradition do it a little differently, not better, different. See we believe that EVERY Sunday is a celebration of the resurrection of Christ. Our catechism states that we worship Christ on Sunday because that is the day He rose from the dead. So every week is a celebration of His death and resurrection. How else could we come to God right? We were enemies within our sin, unable to offer any acceptable sacrifice for them to commune with God. His son was offered as the perfect lamb for our iniquities, and therefore it is through the painful and shameful death on the cross that we can approached the throne of heaven with anything. Prayer, praise, or worship. Many Reformed churches hold this view. So there is generally no reason to decorate a church up for a special worship since every Sunday we are entering God’s presence, through the blood of Christ, to worship Him alone.
Now some folks within reformed circles also take this to an extreme. They don’t mention any holiday at all. If a sermon series is rolling along, that is the topic of worship for the week. I happen to not fully agree with this version. Yes, I am reformed. PCA, if you really want to know. But I prefer to look at the history God has given us in the OT to realize that memorials and monuments are necessary for us to remember the things we must.
If you know your bible stories, you will remember that once Joshua brought the Israelites across the Jordan, they set up stones from the river bed to remind themselves what God had done. They did this all over the place and they were told to answer their children’s questions when the youngsters asked, “Dad, what is this for?”
Visible reminders and celebrations, though not holy in any way, are good for us to engage in. We are forgetful people, are we not? I personally make lots of lists now to remind myself what is going on. Reminders are a good thing, Resurrection celebrations are good things… as long as they are pointing to the One who was raised from the dead for our eternal hope and salvation.