Easter is celebrated by Christians around the world each year, in remembrance of the resurrection of Jesus Christ. The Gospels record that Jesus was crucified on a Friday, then rose from the dead the following Sunday and appeared to His disciples and many others in the next few weeks.
Jesus’ original 12 disciples would go on to give their lives to spread the message of Jesus throughout the known world. Later Christians, from the first century until our own time, have likewise given their lives to tell the message of Jesus. Why is Jesus’ resurrection so important?
Jesus, Himself, gave us the reason. Just after the Last Supper, on His way to the Garden of Gethsemane, where He would be arrested and taken for trial and crucifixion, Jesus had a long conversation with His disciples. During that conversation, not only did He tell them that He would soon be killed, He also said, “Because I live, you will live also.” (John 14:19, NKJV) Jesus’ resurrection is the proof that Jesus is who He said He was, and that He can give eternal life, like He said He could.
If Jesus were still dead, His claim to be able to grant eternal life to those who put their faith in Him would be suspect. But since Jesus is alive, His promises are true. Paul, the Apostle, put it this way:
“And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins! … But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.” (1 Corinthians 15:17, 20, NKJV)
The resurrection of Jesus Christ is the key to the Christian faith – proof that our Savior lives, and that He has power to give eternal life to all who believe. That is something worth celebrating!