5 Reasons Why Easter is Christians’ Most Important Holiday

What is the most important Christian holiday? Based on the amount of time and money spent on it, you would think Christmas. But according the Bible, it’s Easter.

While the Christmas story is mentioned briefly in two Gospels, the resurrection is referenced dozens of times, in all four Gospels and in most the epistles. Paul makes it the central theme of his writings. He insists that if Christ wasn’t raised from the dead, then our faith is worthless (1 Cor. 15:17).

Even Good Friday, which celebrates the death of Jesus on the cross, is meaningless without the resurrection.

Why should the resurrection mean so much to Christians? Here are five reasons.

It validates everything Jesus said and did. The son of God came to earth to show us how to live a completely new life. But if he had simply taught the things he did then died, he would have been no better than any other religious leader. It was only by his rising from the dead – conquering death – that everything he said and did took on significance.

It gives us new life. When we commit to following Jesus, he doesn’t just make our lives better. We die to the old life we had and through his resurrection we begin living a brand new life through his power.

It sealed God’s plan to send the Holy Spirit to all humanity. Prior to Jesus’ death and resurrection, the Holy Spirit came to only a few people who God selected. But the plan all along had been to send him to all people. The resurrection made it possible to fulfill that plan.

It gives us eternal life. Jesus’ death on the cross meant the punishment for our sins had been fulfilled. His resurrection meant that he had conquered death, and through him, believers have also been granted freedom from eternal death. While our mortal bodies will die, our souls will live on in eternity in God’s presence.

It gives us a source of joy. The resurrection is a historical fact; nothing can take that away. When we find our joy in that fact, we will always be able to experience joy, no matter what circumstances we find ourselves in.

What’s So Good About Good Friday?

Almost 2,000 years ago, Jesus was nailed to a cross on a Friday during Passover and died. It seemed like the end of a dream for his followers, who believed he would change the world.

Yet this week Christians from around the world will celebrate the event with a holiday known as Good Friday. As non-Christians look at the event, though, it may raise the question, “What’s good about the death of Jesus?”

Here are four reasons why Christians can consider the death of Jesus to be “good.”

It pleased God. Isaiah 53 predicts the sacrifice Jesus would make, bearing the punishment for our sins even though he had done no wrong. Then in 53:10 it says, “Yet the LORD was pleased to crush him severely.” (HCSB) This seems like a wrong thing for God to be pleased by, but He had some good reasons.

It served justice. Because all people have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, they have to be punished. With his death on the cross, Jesus took on all those sins and paid the penalty for all who are willing to follow him.

It fixed a broken relationship. When Adam and Eve sinned, it broke the fellowship God longed to have with His creation. When Jesus paid the punishment for our sins, it restored the path for us to have fellowship with God again, which is why He was pleased by the death of His son.

Death wasn’t permanent. The followers of Jesus didn’t know it at the time (although Jesus had told them it would happen) but Jesus’ death was only temporary. He was sealed in a grave on Friday, but by Sunday morning he was alive and free from the bonds of death. That gave an entirely new perspective on his death. What had seemed to be awful on Friday suddenly became good when viewed in light of his resurrection.

While having nails hammered into his hands and feet didn’t make for a very good Friday for Jesus, it did turn out to be not only a good Friday, but a great Friday for those who believe in him.