For a year now, with the new normal of work-from-home, online classes etc., the lines between schools/ colleges/ office and home have been blurred. Most of us find ourselves barely surviving through the week, just waiting for the next Sunday! Looking back on all the Sundays that have gone by, which Sunday do you recollect as one on which you accomplished something worthwhile?
Did you know that the average person lives through approximately 4,732 weeks in their lifetime? That would mean approximately 4700 Sundays. But among all these Sundays, today is special, as it is “Easter Sunday”, arguably one of the most significant ‘Sundays’ etched in history. In fact, the very reason why Sunday happens to be a holiday in many parts of the world is because it came to be observed by Christian communities as a day of gathering together to celebrate the very event that Easter Sunday commemorates.
Easter is celebrated to commemorate the resurrection of Jesus Christ. The Bible records the chain of events that led to this breath-taking moment as beginning with Jesus’ crucifixion, which is now celebrated as Good Friday. The crucifixion was followed by his burial and then returning to life on the third day, now known as Easter Sunday. This event of Jesus Christ rising from death is essentially the foundation upon which the Christian faith is built.
Jesus lived on the earth for merely three decades, out of which he spent only three years publicly preaching his message, reaching out to the marginalized healing people, and performing several miracles. When his message and ations went against the vested interests of the religious authorities, they plotted to have him tried under the religious law for blasphemy and eventually crucified him for this “crime”. (To know more about his crucifixion and its significance, Read here.)
This may sound like a sad ending, except for the fact that he rose from the grave three days later and was seen by hundreds of people, and his tomb lies empty to this day. We deliberately use the word fact because there is much scholarly research and literature that documents the huge number of eyewitness accounts and historical data that is available on the resurrection of Jesus. Any scientific enquiry proceeds by analysing all the available data and then drawing conclusions based on the most probable explanation for that data. By these criteria, it is intellectually sound to say that the resurrection of Jesus is the most probable explanation of all the data available in terms of historical records and eyewitness accounts surrounding the events of the time.
But probably even more significant than all of this is the sheer transformation that individuals and communities across the world have experienced through an encounter with this risen Jesus, and his subsequent work in their lives. The true significance of Easter is that whoever believes that Jesus died on the cross as a punishment for all their wrongdoings and rose again, will receive forgiveness from God and their lives will be transformed through a fellowship with this risen Christ. For anybody reading this, if you feel that you need forgiveness or closure for anything, Jesus can give it to you if you invite him into your life, no matter how grave your mistakes or how deep your wounds are. And that’s not even where the good news stops – just as he rose from the dead, he can breathe new life into us and make us a new and transformed creation, ever drawing us into an intimate relationship with him that lasts even beyond the grave into eternity.
Our prayer for you this Easter Sunday is that your life may be transformed by the risen Christ. A blessed Easter to you all!