From the time I was a little boy, Easter was a special Sunday. At first, it was about getting a new outfit (I have pictures of my blue and white polyester leisure suit that matched my dad's from the early 1970s) and a plastic basket full of candy.
Over time, the meaning of the day became clear.
As a teenager, we would arrive at our little church in Fort Worth, Texas and join about twenty other church members for a "Sunrise Service" in parking lot. It was unique, in that watching the sun rise over the Whataburger across the street even felt special.
Easter has become more and more a cultural event, rather than a holy remembrance. Nevertheless, even in a culture far from God the message is clear. . . JESUS IS ALIVE!
Today, churches across our nation and the world will likely see record numbers in attendance for the year. At least, that is the case in most of the post-Christian world. Many pastors will once again open the Bible to passages recounting the day when Mary and the disciples first heard that Jesus was no longer in the tomb.
The repetition of this story is not a bad thing. In fact, it is the story! It should be told over and over, and not just on Easter Sunday.
Jesus really died.
He did so to pay for the sins of humanity.
He really was placed in a tomb.
Three days later, he really did arise.
Jesus has defeated death.
He is still alive, the victor over death for eternity.
He's alive, and you and I can be, too.
For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures. 1 Corinthians 15:3-4 (ESV)