Church leaders say the two organisations were "airbrushing faith" out of the festival. Instead, Christians in the West celebrate Easter on the first Sunday after the full moon of the vernal equinox on March 21. This difference, however, did not interfere with their communion, although their mutual joy was necessarily hindered. The ‘good’ in Good Friday is a much-debated term. Go figure! It was originally a holiday to the fertility goddess Aestarte, or Diana of Ephesus in the book of Acts. Please note that if you are under 18, you won't be able to access this site. Indeed, the apostle Paul, in writing of the pagans of his time, says "they are without excuse" (Romans 1:20). Consequently, Hislop is discredited and not considered authoritative and reliable. Pagan Holidays The Roman Empire was rampant with polytheism. Rabbits are notorious for breeding hence the Easter Bunnies. Fr. 6 Things to Know about the Messianic Prophecies of Jesus, This site is a proud member of the Salem Web Network, a subsidiary of, Copyright © 2020, Crosswalk.com. Easter Sunday is supposed to be the day Christ was resurrected, but even that part isn’t true either. These customs’ historical roots are so commonly known, in fact, that some poke fun at Easter with comic memes like, “The pagans are mad—they want their holidays back!” Does it matter if Easter is pagan? Regarding this veneration, Carole M. Cusack comments that, among adherents, Ēostre is "associated with the coming of spring and the dawn, and her festival is celebrated at the spring equinox . (VINE’S EXPOSITORY DICTIONARY OF THE NEW TESTAMENT WORDS, pp. In the Christian writers of the first several centuries A.D. (known collectively as the Church Fathers), it's clear that tensions increased over time between the Christians and the Jews. Now on the first day of the week Mary Magdalene came early to the tomb, while it was still dark, and saw the stone already taken away from the tomb. In whatever manner your family observes this season, our family wishes you a blessed one. Easter, the Pagan Holiday. In the liturgical cycle, the date of Easter is preceded by Lent, a 40 day season of fasting and repentance, representing Jesus' 40 days of fasting in the desert. Pagan roots of Easter lie in celebrating the spring equinox, for millennia an important holiday in many religions. Unlike most holidays, Easter does not fall on the same set date each year. Origins of Pagan Holidays. ... Research also says that … I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer; for I say to you, I shall never again eat it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God. It should be noted that, though Ignatius indicates that first-century Christians abide by the Sabbath, he discourages Christians from following Talmudic Jewish practices common in this period that were over and above the law of Moses. In the Old Testament book of Esther, we read of a Jewish girl named Hadassah who became queen of the King of Persia, where she helped save the Jewish people from persecution. Easter, also called Pascha (Greek, Latin) or Resurrection Sunday, is a festival and holiday commemorating the resurrection of Jesus from the dead, described in the New Testament as having occurred on the third day after his burial following his crucifixion by the Romans at Calvary c. 30 AD. This is the traditional date of the conception of Jesus, and Christmas lands exactly nine months later, on December 25. A pagan celebration. Hislop's work appears authoritative on the surface, including numerous footnotes citing various historical sources. So, let’s cover what Easter is. The celebration of the day of resurrection fell on the month of Eastre (West Saxon) or Eostre (Northumbrian). The Council of Nicaea also considered the issue of a common celebration of Easter. Christians believe that Jesus, the Son of God, died for our sins on a Roman cross, was buried, and rose to life again “on the first day of the week, very early in the morning” (Luke 24:1). Many people believe Easter was originally a pagan festival because of the connection between its English name, Easter, and the Germanic deity “Eostre”— a fertility goddess, associated with the vernal equinox. Jesus commanded His followers to continue keeping the Passover in remembrance of Him. Although the holiday of Easter takes its name in English from an obscure Anglo-Saxon dawn goddess, the holiday itself is of Christian origin and there is no evidence to support the notion that popular traditions such as the Easter bunny and the painting of Easter eggs were ever pagan. Easter, also called Pascha (Greek, Latin) or Resurrection Sunday, is a festival and holiday commemorating the resurrection of Jesus from the dead, described in the New Testament as having occurred on the third day after his burial following his crucifixion by the Romans at Calvary c. 30 AD. Christmas was never a pagan holiday. Died on the second Monday of March.” No, of course they don’t. Winick was able to track down the earliest mentions of this Pagan myth in print, which was in the 19th century, but there’s no trace of it’s apparent ancient origins. We’re asked these … The son of a pagan father and a Christian mother, Constantine followed his father's pagan ways until the LORD got his attention. Therefore, Easter is celebrated each year between March 22 and April 25. In the place of factual history, many people - Christians and unbelievers alike - subscribe to unsubstantiated "urban legends" of church history. Occurring every year on March 20, 21, or 22, the spring equinox is the end of winter and beginning of spring. Easter was kept in the Anglo parts of Europe, so it was probably grafted in by the people and then sanctioned by the clergy. For example, it's quite clear to anyone that Easter eggs and rabbits are not biblical symbols, and they surely do appear to be fertility symbols. Billie Holiday & Louis Armstrong - Farewell to Storyville. (Acts 12:3-4 KJV). Tag collegati: #pagan #pagan+music #pagan-holidays #happy-easter-holiday #are-christmas-and-easter-pagan. Is it appropriate to use that term to refer to the Resurrection day of Jesus Christ—and is the entire Lent season and Easter holiday tainted by association with ancient pagan religion? (Then were the days of unleavened bread.) Unlike most holidays, Easter does not fall on the same set date each year. Sponsored link. 328 маъқул. First we start with the actual command Christ gave us to keep in memory of Him. The moveable feasts are based on the cycles of the moon, and are essentially counterparts to certain Hebrew Old Testament feasts, and follow similar rules. Church leaders say the two organisations were "airbrushing faith" out of the festival. Bede does not provide evidence identifying any pagan practices that were mingled with the Christian feast, nor anything connecting the name "Easter" with the Babylonian goddess. Hadassah was given the name Esther, a Persian word that is exactly the same name as Ishtar. It is the culmination of the Passion of Jesus, preceded by Lent (or Great Lent), a 40-day period of fasting, … However, syncretism of Christianity and paganism did take place in this period, but it was through the efforts of heretics and not emperors. She was the Great Mother Goddess of the Saxon people in Northern Europe. Many of these urban legends feature Emperor Constantine, who is alleged to have mingled pagan Babylonian practices with pure Christian worship to fashion Easter into a false holiday of Satan rather than a commemoration of Jesus' victory over death and sin. The Wheel of the Year holidays originate mostly from Celtic and Germanic pagan rituals, many moons ago. (VINE’S EXPOSITORY DICTIONARY OF THE NEW TESTAMENT WORDS, pp. A holiday named for the goddess is part of the neopagan Wiccan Wheel of the Year (Ostara, 21 March). Is Easter really built on an evil foundation? 13 Nov 2020. A detailed discussion of Hislop is beyond the scope of this article, but The Babylon Connection by Ralph Woodrow offers a critical analysis of Hislop's book and its method. In spite of being banned by bishops and emperors, Manichaeism was around for centuries afterwards and was embraced by the Christian writer Augustine of Hippo prior to his conversion to Christ. As a result, a widening rift began to grow between Christianity and Judaism in the early centuries A.D.  Over time, in part because of this antipathy, Christianity became a predominantly Gentile religion, and Jewish practices such as Sabbath-keeping and Passover apparently either fell away or acquired a distinctively Christian character. The Holiday's Origins and History, The Beautiful Truth and Meaning in the Angel’s Message ‘He Is Not Here, for He Has Risen’, How Firm a Foundation! The pagan goddess Ishtar was associated with the morning star Venus. It was still dark and Christ was already resurrected when the Hebrew women arrived at the tomb on the first day of the week. Origins of the name "Easter": The name "Easter" originated with the names of an ancient Goddess and God.The Venerable Bede, (672-735 CE), a Christian scholar, first asserted in his book De Ratione Temporum that Easter was named after Eostre (a.k.a. Also, Hislop makes some very oblique associations, drawing vague similarities as "proofs" of his argument. There’s evidence that Easter is a holiday with a lot of pagan influence, all the way down to the word “Easter.” While some is conjecture, it’s important to know the origins of what we and our families celebrate. Easter is a pagan festival. Our language, our system of education, law, literature, science, history - just about every field of knowledge - owes a great debt to the pre-Christian cultures of the Greeks and Romans, and the Egyptians and Babylonians before them. - Socrates. There is actually an interesting astronomical basis for the association between Venus and myrtle, but that is another story.). There are exactly no other sources that connect Easter with a Germanic pagan goddess. Easter’s pagan roots. The sole source of a pagan precursor to the Christian holiday is the Venerable Bede, the eighth century monk and chronicler of England. Pagan Holidays - Free download as Word Doc (.doc), PDF File (.pdf), Text File (.txt) or read online for free. The fixed feasts are tied to the seasonal cycle of the solar year and follow an annual progression where the same holidays land on the same dates every year. The following example was written by Justin Martyr, a second-century Christian: You curse in your synagogues all those who are called from Him Christians; and other nations effectively carry out the curse, putting to death those who simply confess themselves to be Christians. In some forms of Germanic neopaganism , Ēostre (or Ostara) is venerated. Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to share on Tumblr (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window). Discover the history of Easter and whether this holiday has Pagan influences. Do they say “Here lies John Doe. Historically Easter is not the first instance of a pagan ritual described by Bede that is now imbued with Christian meaning. Why People Think Easter is Pagan. According to the New Unger’s Bible Dictionary: “The word Easter is of Saxon origin, Eastra, the goddess of spring, in whose honour sacrifices were offered about Passover time each year. Quarter holidays for modern pagans are typically Imbolc, Beltane, Lughnasadh, and Samhain, a story in and of itself. We once attended church with a family that was very opposed to Easter, yet this same family named their daughter Esther. Additionally, many of the Easter traditions “have little to do” with Jesus’ resurrection, states the Britannica, “but derive from folk customs.”For instance, regarding the popular Easter symbols the egg and the rabbit, The Encyclopedia of Religion says: “The egg symbolizes new life breaking through the apparent death (hardness) of the eggshell.”It adds: “The rabbit was known as an extraordinarily fertile … 10 Easy Ways to Get it Back, 10 Things the Bible Says about the Mark of the Beast, 9 Ways Grandparents Can Share Christmas This Year, Even from Far Away, New Podcast from Dan Darling: "The Characters of Christmas". The Easter season continues until Ascension Thursday, commemorating the 40 days Jesus spent with His disciples before ascending to heaven (Acts 1:3). The Christians didn’t want to participate in that, and so they said, “While everybody else is celebrating this pagan thing, we’re going to have our own celebration. This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me. But what is the true m The page talks about factual information regarding how Easter got started in the first place, & how it became traditional not religious. Within this amorphous blend of religion were pagan celebrations sometimes posited as influencing the Christian decision to commemorate December 25. On the other hand, Judaism had been permitted by Julius Caesar himself, and an exemption to the Roman law had been affirmed by the subsequent emperors. While we often hear complaints of pagan influences in connection with Easter, one never hears complaints of pagan Babylonian influences in the Hebrew calendar, as recorded in the later Old Testament narratives. This cup which is poured out for you is the new covenant in My blood. Socrates goes on to relate: Now Constantine, the emperor, having thus embraced Christianity, conducted himself as a Christian in his profession, rebuilding the churches, and enriching them with splendid offerings: he also either closed or destroyed the temples of the pagans, and exposed the images which were in them to popular contempt. We had a pretty good argument about that. The origins of these traditions are mostly lost to history. We have grace and liberty from the Lord to either hold a certain day special or not, as long as we do so to the glory of God (Romans 14:5, 6). Similarly, the robins reappear at this time of year, and soon begin laying their eggs. No, Easter is not a pagan holiday. The fixed feasts are strictly New Testament holidays. "In ancient Britain and Ireland, the Celtic festival of Samhain (pronounced sow-inn), the Lord of the Dead, was observed on October 31, at the end of summer. But rather than being evidence of insidious Babylonian idolatry, they appear to simply be folklore customs associated with the passage of seasons in temperate climates such as Europe and North America. It might be “Christian” but it’s not biblical. So much for those sunrise services. In the books of Moses, we find the month name Abib for the first month (Exodus 13:4, inter alia). Indeed, it is not clear how Babylonian influence could jump all the way across the Mediterranean and the European continent after many centuries to turn up in Germany and then England with the early Anglo-Saxons. These diverse answers, though, quickly lead to a greater question: Does it matter? Discover the history of Easter and whether this holiday has Pagan influences. The page talks about factual information regarding how Easter got started in the first place, & how it became traditional not religious. Easter is a single day, but “after the Passover” is a reference to Passover and the entire week of the Days of Unleavened Bread. Notwithstanding, the apostle also instructs us to "not let our good be evil spoken of." Rather, shouldn't we be a people that seek truth and love to learn new things - to "prove all things, hold fast to that which is good; abstain from every appearance of evil" (1 Thess. How a pagan holiday is reinvented: Christmas Image source: GJones Creative Over the many long centuries since the time of Jesus and the Apostles, a church calendar was developed for keeping track of important feasts and holidays. I encourage readers to use legitimate sources to search out the history of Easter, such as history.com or any other reliable reference tool. But today, with all of the information we have available, it is quite easy to see that Easter has no place in a Bible believing household. Q: A relative who left the Catholic Church and joined some Messianic-Jewish sect made the comment that Easter was originally a pagan holiday named after some German goddess, Eoster. The church calendar includes a schedule of "fixed feasts" and "moveable feasts." In fact, per prophecy, it had to be a calendar date for His death and subsequent resurrection. Thus, there are three reasons that Easter is not a pagan holiday: Easter is not a holiday that morphed out of an ancient celebration of a fertility goddess or a spring harvest. March 25 is the traditional feast of the Annunciation, commemorating the angel's announcement to Mary that she would be the mother of Jesus. That’s easy to understand and much more in line with how we remember important events. It just so happens that on the twenty-fifth of December in the Roman Empire there was a pagan holiday that was linked to mystery religions; the pagans celebrated their festival on December 25. According to folklorist Stephen Winick, it’s “impossible to tell if Ostara as a goddess ever existed.”. You can’t twist and take a tuck here or there to make it so. The church calendar is maintained in "high church" liturgical traditions, and its intended purpose is to devote large stretches of the year to commemorate the events of the life and ministry of Jesus. 344-345). Although Easter has become known as a Christian holiday around the world, celebrating the sacred death and rebirth of Jesus, the true pagan Easter and its symbols is a clear testament to the historical melting pot of cultures and traditions that make Easter what is today. Christmas is preceded by the season of Advent, a season of anticipation and reflection of the coming of the Savior. She was the Great Mother Goddess of the Saxon people in Northern Europe. Rather, it is a religious observance initiated by the Christian Church as a way to commemorate the resurrection of Christ. Scopri WHAT IF EASTER WAS A PAGAN HOLIDAY? We had a pretty good argument about that. How about Halloween? Verse 3 proves it is a reference to Passover because Passover is the beginning of the Days of Unleavened Bread (Exodus 12). Pagan Holidays made by Man There are a plethora of pagan holidays that occur during the season covered by Easter: the Day of Bau (Babylonian), Dark Mother Day (Indian), the Day of Fortuna (Roman), the Feast of Blajini (Romanian), the Feast of Artemis/Diana (Greek/Roman), the Feast of Tellus Mater (Roman), the Festival of Ba’ast (Egyptian), the Festival of Ishtar (Babylonian), the Feast of Elaphebolia (Athenian), and Odin’s … However, this topic is also addressed in another historical source, the Ecclesiastical History of Sozomen: Others, envious at the honor in which Christians were held by the emperor, deemed it necessary to imitate the acts of the ruler; others devoted themselves to an examination of Christianity, and by means of signs, of dreams, or of conferences with bishops and monks, were convinced that it was better to become Christians. Sponsored link. I'm not here to defend paganism. In Bede’s time, writing as he was in Latin, the month and the festival were more universally referred to as “paschal time,” derived from the Hebrew name for … The origins of the Christian holiday of Easter. From this Council emerged a formulation of the doctrine of the Trinity, which has been affirmed by all orthodox Christians ever since. Many Christians are uncomfortable in acknowledging the Easter holiday’s pagan name. It is the same with Christ’s death. The primary source for these historical fabrications is a 19th-century book called Two Babylons or the Papal Worship Proved to be the Worship of Nimrod and his Wife by Bishop Alexander Hislop. From the Valentine Democrat, April 9, 1903. There’s evidence that Easter is a holiday with a lot of pagan influence, all the way down to the word “Easter.” While some is conjecture, it’s important to know the origins of what we and our families celebrate. 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