Most of us, including urban people who never lived on a farm, are acquainted with the old saying, “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.” We often hear that from those who are planning for retirement. That may be good advice.
Christians, however, do put all their eggs in one basket – an Easter basket. If Jesus Christ did not rise from the dead, then all is lost. If He did rise from the dead, then what Christianity is doing in His name is true and valid. There is not one egg to lose from that basket of eternal faith and truth.
Easter eggs, hard-boiled and beautifully decorated, speak to us of the buried Christ who is resurrected to eternal life. I recall childhood days when a “setting hen” would sit on a nest of eggs keeping them warm and protected. It was an exciting day when the live chicken inside the egg wanted out. We could hear that unborn baby pecking on the shell until it broke and the new little chick came out.
Those baby chickens, once born, grew rapidly and soon were giving birth to other “hatching little chickens.” Some of them grew up to lay eggs that we enjoyed immensely or become fried chicken with delicious chicken gravy for Sunday dinner.
Most of us have carried many things in our baskets – the baskets we carry daily with all our needs, problems, heartaches, pain and worry. In that basket, we also have gently placed our dreams, aspirations, hopes, love and victories. We are counting on what we have placed in our Easter Basket.
Easter, according to Webster’s New World Dictionary, is “An annual Christian festival celebrating the resurrection of Jesus, held on the first Sunday after the date of the first full moon that occurs on or after March 21.”
In my childhood days, it was always an exciting time when I and other children found an Easter egg. That is one reason I still enjoy watching little children hunt for those brightly colored eggs. They laugh, rejoice and have a happy time when they find those rewarding eggs.
Jesus had been crucified dead, buried in a borrowed tomb that he needed for only parts of three days. It would be impossible today, to find a cemetery where you may borrow a grave for just three days. Try it. They might have you committed for insanity. Once dead, forever dead. That’s the message of an unbelieving world.
The message from those who were present on the day of His resurrection is brief and to the point – “He is risen!” You may read it in the Gospels, the accounts of the life, death and eternal resurrection of Jesus Christ as accurately experienced and recorded by Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. In these first four historical books of the New Testament, the story is recorded near the end of each book.
Matthew, the tax collector, a man acquainted with numbers and accuracy, tells the story in the 28th chapter of his account. It begins, “Now, after the Sabbath, as the first day of the week began to dawn, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to see the tomb” (28:1).
An angel from heaven had rolled the large stone back from the door. He said to them, “Come, see the place where the Lord lay. And go quickly and tell His disciples that He is risen from the dead” (28:6-7). You can put that egg of truth in your Easter basket.
That first day of Jesus’ resurrection was a day of excitement, rejoicing and telling others what had happened. Those are the eggs of truth we may put in our Easter baskets and eagerly tell everyone we meet this exciting story, “He is alive!”
© 2013 Wm. C. Ellis
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