In John 10:10 Jesus promises His followers abundant life. This blog is about my life as His follower.

Monday, April 5, 2010

So everybody doesn't know what Easter is all about?

Yesterday during church the pastor showed a very short video that he'd made that has still got me to thinking.

He'd gone down to a local outdoor shopping mall called Victoria Gardens that is very popular in this area. He'd randomly talked to various people whom he encounered at this shopping center and asked them what Easter meant to them, why do we celebrate Easter. The people he questioned were various ages, ethnic gorups, genders, and looked extremely typical; people I would meet on the street. Out of those few people he questioned, not a single one appeared to know the Christian message of the risen savior. Two people appeared to know that it was about Jesus, and I'm not kidding, they said it was celebrating Jesus' birth. One hemmed and hawed and said that he used to know but just couldn't remember (this particular person was not old). The rest basically alluded to the cultural aspects such as family celebrations, easter eggs, bunnies, etc.

As I watched this short clip something in my spirit sank. I kept asking - how can people be so unaware of the message of Jesus? Have we as Christians become so insulated from the rest of the world that no one has any idea what we believe? I couldn't help but feel like somehow, as a group, we're failing....more importantly, I began questioning what can I do different. How can I have more impact on the people around me?

15 comments:

Ginx said...

It would help if it wasn't 95% pagan...

My suggestion: really highlight lambs. That's about the only purely Christian symbol in the whole iconography of American "Easter" (named after Eostre, a Germanic goddess). You could also push for "Passion of the Christ" to replace "Sound of Music" on TV schedules.

photogr said...

I would have to think that the true meaning of Easter has been over looked for the "easter bunny stuff" promoted by the retail industry to increase revenue.

As far as impact for the true meaning, one must emphasize the true meaning to others that don't know it. However that may be a monumental tast since government regulations prohibit Jesus and God to be spoken as it is offensive to a few.

Being Me said...

Have a Blessed Easter my Dear.

May his love keep us changing and renewed.

Mike said...

I think we've done a phenomenal job pointing fingers at sinners and telling them what they should and should not be doing, rather than living the gospel in our daily world. I agree with you...it's OUR fault, not theirs! Sad.

RCUBEs said...

Our fault or some of them don't have a desire to know Him anyway? Like what bro. Mike said, being His ambassadors, we have to show it in our actions...with love that comes from Him. Blessings sister Tracy.

John Cowart said...

Seems to me that out of 18 sermons given by Stephen, Peter and Paul and recorded in the book of Acts, at least 16 of them have the Resurrection as their main theme.

During that time period people flocked to Christ.

Now, we hear sermons about the Resurrection maybe once a year--unless the preacher talks about spring or the oil depletion allowance.

And we wonder why folks in the mall don't come to Christ?

Of course, they don't know about resurrection because they don't know about death. The fact of death remains hidden away--out of sight, out of mind. The corpse gets whisked away and the bereaved get three days off work to "get over it".

So, we known neither about death nor resurrection because we know little about life.

Don't know where I'm going with this, just thinking out loud in your space.

Happy Easter.

GCT said...

Easter is when Jesus comes out of his cave and if he sees his shadow we have 6 more weeks of winter, right?

This just goes to show you that many Xians are ignorant of their own religion and its history.

Oh, and photogr, what government regulations prohibit Jesus and god to be spoken? Are you referring to the first amendment which prohibits the state from sanctioning your particular religion over any other or non-religion?

May said...

Hi Tracy,
Nice Post. It's very sad that so many people doesn't know the true meaning of Easter.

Victor S E Moubarak said...

"Have we as Christians become so insulated from the rest of the world that no one has any idea what we believe?"

Yes.

Here's an example of something witnessed in the UK. Two young women entered a jeweller's shop and looked at some necklaces made of gold. One suggested that a necklace with a Cross on it looked really good. The other replied: "Yes ... but I want a Cross with the little man on it!"

God bless.

Ginx said...

"Yes ... but I want a Cross with the little man on it!"

Maybe she was Catholic. They don't know anything about their religion. Cross, crucifix... what's the difference? The ones with the little dude on them are SO in right now!

photogr said...

GCT:

"Oh, and photogr, what government regulations prohibit Jesus and god to be spoken? Are you referring to the first amendment which prohibits the state from sanctioning your particular religion over any other or non-religion?"


You just answered your own question.

I am sure you are aware that prayer in public places or schools were banned. If one were to mention God or Jesus in a speech or graduation conmencement, they might fall under the ACLU police scrunity for using offensive words, etc.

Take care

GCT said...

photogr,
"You just answered your own question."

No, I didn't.

"I am sure you are aware that prayer in public places or schools were banned."

That is outright false. No one has banned prayer in public places or schools. What has been banned is government endorsement of prayer or government sponsored prayer. Students have the right to pray as they see fit in school, no one has denied that right or even sought to deny that right. What can't happen is teachers leading prayers in class.

"If one were to mention God or Jesus in a speech or graduation conmencement, they might fall under the ACLU police scrunity for using offensive words, etc."

If the speech were coming from the school or a representative thereof (which is a representative of the government) then yes. That would be an unwarranted endorsement of religion (over non religion or one religion over any other) by the government.

Many people don't understand these laws and think that the big bad government/ACLU/atheists are out to ban all religion, and nothing could be further from the truth. Yes, sometimes administrators in schools err on the side of caution and usually the ACLU steps in to correct those instances. Still, like I said, no one is trying to ban your religion. Your religion is the majority - you are not a persecuted minority.

photogr said...

GCT:

At a Graduation conmincement about a year or two ago an honor student was to speak at the ceremony. The school administrators were going to deny part of her speech as she was going to mention her faith as a guide in her education. She went ahead and mentioned it any way feeling she had a right to do so.

Invariably the administrators panicked and shut of her microphone as well as ushered her of the stage.

Now who crossed the line?

At a school athletic function off the school grounds in Pace Florida last year, a coaches wife ( I think) asked to have a prayer before the dinner. One person felt the prayer was offensive and complianed to the ACLU. The ACLU sued the School board.

Shortly after the dinner at a graduation ceremony, the entire graduation class during the ceremony stood up unannounced and said the Lords Prayer in an act of defiance of the ACLU ban on prayer at that school's function.

As a teenager in school a long while back, we were told that we would not be allowed to pray the Lords prayer in class any more after we said the pledge due to the new law at that time. Ones that were more religious than I was at the time tried and were expelled from school.

Who crossed the line there?

"Still, like I said, no one is trying to ban your religion. Your religion is the majority - you are not a persecuted minority."

Although I believe in God and Jesus as a saviour, I really don't like to be labeled with in a certain group or denomination. I do not conform to any particular religion or denomination. Only what I read on my own from the bible and how I interpret it. I think that you feel the same way in your beliefs based on how you interpret the bible.

You see a tremendous amount of injustice and I see a tremendous amount of mercy and yet the words are exactly the same. Odd isn't it?

Michelle said...

OK...first let me say I understand your point Tracy. Most proclaiming Christians have no idea why the believe or what they belive.

Now. I seriously laughed out loud at Ginx's first comment. That was my thoughts exactly when I was reading the responses from those at the mall. Easter, like Christmas, has a meaning from pagan culture. Constantine Constantine Constantine. So much of Christianity comes from Constantine changing the early church. Traditions of men have trumped the commandments of God.

GCT said...

photogr,
"Now who crossed the line?"

In the case of the graduation speech it's rather complicated. The student certainly crossed a line by inappropriately injecting faith into something that is secular and forcing others to listen to their personal beliefs whether they agree or not. This student put the school in a shaky position, because the school is ultimately responsible for what happens at school functions.

Should the school have just let her say whatever she has to say and let it go? Maybe. I don't know without knowing more about the situation.

"At a school athletic function off the school grounds in Pace Florida last year, a coaches wife ( I think) asked to have a prayer before the dinner. One person felt the prayer was offensive and complianed to the ACLU. The ACLU sued the School board."

Again, without knowing more about the situation, I can't say for sure whether it was wrong or not. The ACLU is pretty good at figuring it out though. My guess is that this was a school sponsored function and completely inappropriate for a prayer to be led. Generally, prayers that are "led" by others have been found to be an inappropriate violation of church state separation.

"Shortly after the dinner at a graduation ceremony, the entire graduation class during the ceremony stood up unannounced and said the Lords Prayer in an act of defiance of the ACLU ban on prayer at that school's function."

It's not the ACLU ban, since the ACLU has no power to ban anything. It would be a court ban based on the merits of the case and the relevant case law.

"As a teenager in school a long while back, we were told that we would not be allowed to pray the Lords prayer in class any more after we said the pledge due to the new law at that time. Ones that were more religious than I was at the time tried and were expelled from school."

The law stipulates that the school can not lead students in the prayer, not that individual students can not privately do their own prayers. A lot of people misunderstand this. If students were creating a disturbance, however, I can see disciplinary action, although expellation seems harsh.

"You see a tremendous amount of injustice and I see a tremendous amount of mercy and yet the words are exactly the same. Odd isn't it?"

It's not odd at all once one realizes why we have our differences of opinion, but that's a different story. The point is that there's no secret cabal plotting to destroy Xianity by having it outlawed. Xianity actually enjoys a favored place in this country, and when we even the playing field and don't allow Xianity to have special favors, it is not the same as persecution or unfair treatment. Quite the opposite actually, it's making sure that Xianity is treated fairly - meaning the same as all other religions and non-religion.

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