This being the season of chocolate gifts in the shape of eggs doesn’t deter me from the enjoyment of the delicacy. It’s the taste, not the shape, that counts. All things are lawful to the righteous man.
I say this because Easter, as it is called, isn’t really a Christian festival, but, like many pagan celebrations, has been adapted into the Christian calendar, and, sadly, fully adopted by the faithful.
The King James Version of the Bible even mentions Easter, such is the longevity of the association with this season, in connection with the death and resurrection of Christ. This, of course, is a gross mistranslation of the word pascha, at Acts 14:2. Pascha is from the Aramaic, and actually refers to the Passover, the premier Jewish feast which remembers the escape from captivity of Israel, and looks forward to the coming Messiah as deliverer.
Strongs translates pascha:
1) the paschal sacrifice (which was accustomed to be offered for the people’s deliverance of old from Egypt)
2) the paschal lamb, i.e. the lamb the Israelites were accustomed to slay and eat on the fourteenth day of the month of Nisan (the first month of their year) in memory of the day on which their fathers, preparing to depart from Egypt, were bidden by God to slay and eat a lamb, and to sprinkle their door posts with its blood, that the destroying angel, seeing the blood, might pass over their dwellings; Christ crucified is likened to the slain paschal lamb
3) the paschal supper
4) the paschal feast, the feast of the Passover, extending from the 14th to the 20th day of the month Nisan
Strongs doesn’t mention what Easter refers to, or how it came to be placed in the AV as a translation of pascha. He just translates pascha as it should be without reference to the error, but others do tell us what the error is all about.
W. E. Vines, in his Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words, says, of pascha:
‘…mistranslated “Easter” in Acts 12:4, AV, denotes the Passover (RV). The phrase “after the Passover” signifies after the whole festival was at an end.
The term “Easter” is not of Christian origin. It is another form of Astarte, one of the titles of the Chaldean goddess, the queen of heaven.
The festival of Pasch held by Christians in post-apostolic times was a continuation of the Jewish feast, but was not instituted by Christ, nor was it connected with Lent. From this Pasch the pagan festival of “Easter” was quite distinct and was introduced into the apostate Western religion, as part of the attempt to adapt pagan festivals to Christianity. See PASSOVER.’
Vines goes on to tell us that pascha is ‘the Greek spelling of the Aramaic word for the Passover, from the Hebrew pasach, “to pass over, to spare,” a feast instituted by God in commemoration of the deliverance of Israel from Egypt, and anticipatory of the expiatory sacrifice of Christ’.
The New King James Version, NIV and Green’s Literal Translation all have ‘Passover’ in place of ‘Easter’.
Of course, pascha has nothing whatsoever to do with chocolate, bunnies, eggs, fertility rights, or, more significantly, Easter. As Vines points out, Easter is a corruption of the name of Astarte, the Chaldean goddess, Queen of Heaven, and the fertility rites associated with the coming of Spring.
Creepy deals crawl in
Easter, despite its pagan roots and association with the false goddess, had, through a mixture of religion, stealth and spiritual blindness, crept into the calendar of the early church, and, by the time of the Council of Nicaea, was already a part of the festival, although, up until this time it had been associated with the Jewish callendar, and celebrated according to dates of the Jewish Passover. However, this was changed by Constantine’s decree at Nicaea, and a fixed time was arranged.
“At the council we also considered the issue of our holiest day, Easter, and it was determined by common consent that everyone, everywhere should celebrate it on one and the same day. For what can be more appropriate, or what more solemn, than that this feast from which we have received the hope of immortality, should be kept by all without variation, using the same order and a clear arrangement? And in the first place, it seemed very unworthy for us to keep this most sacred feast following the custom of the Jews, a people who have soiled their hands in a most terrible outrage, and have thus polluted their souls, and are now deservedly blind. Since we have cast aside their way of calculating the date of the festival, we can ensure that future generations can celebrate this observance at the more accurate time which we have kept from the first day of the passion until the present time….”— Emperor Constantine, following the Council of Nicaea
Already, then, we have the error of Easter well implanted into the calendar, even given legitimacy by a council originally called to deal with the Arian controversy. It even changed times and seasons to suit the pagan fertility rites of Astarte worship, which is, most years, not even coinciding with the true date of the Passover. And Constantine even blamed the Jews for the demise of the old dates.
Correction: The word Easter was translated so from Socrates’ account, although he used the word Pascha. It is not evident what word Constantine used, but the date change remains the same. According to Adam Clarke, the translation of Easter into the Anglo-Saxon prayer book led to the inclusion in the AV. It remains a reference to the goddess Easter, also know as Ishtar or Astarte. The translation Easter remains curiously English, and is thought to be derived from the Druidic worship of pre-Christian times. It is also known that the early English Christians celebrated Pascha, but were forced by Rome to change the time of their celebration, which coincided with the Jewish Passover, to celebrate Easter [Ed]*.
Astarte, Queen of Heaven, reviled by God in Jeremiah 44 as a false deity, the goddess of fertility, to whom Israel illegitimately bowed down and baked tarts (short form of astarte), burned incense, and poured out drink offerings, brought forward into the Christian calendar, with the associated symbolism of fertility rites, was being worshipped despite the associated hat-tip to the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ.
And the chocolate? Well someone came up with the idea of eggs and rabbits moulded in chocolate, symbols already very much in vogue amongst Christians, straight out of the Roman Catholic stream of paganism mingled with a religious form of Christianity.
The true Feast
I am glad the true feast can still be celebrated, that of the Pasche, the Passion of Christ, who died once for the whole world, so all could come to Him and be delivered from their sin, including their idolatry, their paganism, secularism, humanism and any other system which denies or contradicts the One True God.
I am glad that Christ has made us free from the law of sin and death, and given us the new life God intended for us. His sacrifice at the cross opened the way for us to be saved, healed, delivered and released from all bondage to sin, death, and any need of worship of other gods, goddesses, saints, systems, men or women. Our reliance is on God alone, and in Him do we trust, none other.
And the way to Him is through faith, by His grace, alone. No works, no struggle, no penance, no boasting, no pain, no payment, no rules, no law, only faith in Him and in the work of His cross, the price paid, once and for all.
So send me chocolate. I’ll smash it, and eat it as chocolate, removing the symbolism, because I can, but please don’t ask me to celebrate the pagan Queen of Heaven’s feasts. She’s a fake and a fraud, as are those who installed her in their religious systems.
I’ll take the Passion of Christ, the Passover, the Paschal Lamb, the reality of Christ’s sacrifice and our gain of new life.
Give me truth, that’s all!
Posted by Steve
*Thanks to Bones for research which led to corrections