Easter bunnies have been on my mind lately.
After the new year, I have zoomed past Valentines Day and St. Patrick’s Day. Easter bunnies have been hopping around in my head laying eggs…
Last year’s Easter celebration for me was one that was taboo to most of the western world. I didn’t go to a church on Easter morning. Easter is on its way again…and instead of stepping foot into a church building on that Sunday morning, I am going to be going on an adventure.
I meet with some folks that gather to express Christ. We are brothers and sisters in Him. Therefore, we have chosen to spend more and more time together to see Christ more. The other night, the brothers were meeting. We decided to go on an adventure the weekend of Easter.
But that’s not the big deal. Here’s the big deal…
Through the planning of this getaway, I began perusing through Acts 2 for some reason. In verse 1 it says,
When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. (Acts 2:1 NASB)
Ok, I must admit something here…I don’t really know what the Day of Pentecost is…so I looked it up…on Wikipedia…”the fiftieth day” is the basic meaning of the word.
In the Old Testament, the Day of Pentecost is actually called Shavuot, which is Hebrew for “Festival of Weeks.” This day celebrates the day when God revealed the Torah, or Law (10 Commandments…and more), to the Jewish nation at Mount Sinai.
Stay with me…unless you already know this…
Since Shavuot occurs 50 days after Passover, Hellenistic Jews gave it the name “Pentecost” or “fiftieth day.” Ok, so…Pentecost is 50 days from Passover.
Let me say that again…Pentecost is 50 days from Passover.
Passover was an event in the Old Testament that was the final straw for Pharoah before the Exodus of the Jewish people from Egypt. The Jewish nation sacrificed a lamb, put the blood on the door of their home and death would “pass over” their home. No blood on the door…death comes in without knocking and takes your first born.
So, we’ve got sacrifice for your family at Passover, and we’ve got the handing down of Law (or the way to live) after the Exodus at Pentecost.
Fast forward to when Jesus was walking the earth.
Hang on…sit in that for a second…
Jesus, the Son of God, part of the Trinity, the Divine Dance…walked the earth…physically.
Ok. He was walking the earth, into Jerusalem, and people are in town to celebrate the Feast of the Passover…or this sacrificial celebration that is a reminder of death passing over their people. People are cheering, throwing robes and palm branches on the ground to lift up this guy who is riding in on a donkey…to be their governmental leader…
Thursday night, the Passover Feast, Last Supper, was served. Judas kisses Jesus. Friday, Jesus is tried. Jesus is crucified.
The people that were throwing their coats and waving palm branches…they peace out.
And all the crowds who came together for this spectacle, when they observed what had happened, began to return, beating their breasts. (Luke 23:48 NASB)
The Sabbath begins.
Jesus dying on the cross is the ultimate sacrifice for us. It was the final sacrifice. The final Passover. He resurrected and on Sunday…the first day…Jesus was out of the grave…his human body was no more…
Consider it an exodus…from the flesh…from this world…from the Old Covenant…for all of those things had been fulfilled in and through Christ!
The fiftieth day…
Guess what? The fiftieth day after the Exodus in the Old Testament, the Old Covenant, or the Torah, or the Law, was given to the Jewish nation of Israel on Mt. Sinai.
The fiftieth day after the resurrection of the physical body of Christ…
And suddenly there came from heaven a noise like a violent rushing wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. And there appeared to them tongues as of fire distributing themselves, and they rested on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit was giving them utterance. (Acts 2:2-4 NASB)
Now this is where things get interesting.
The fiftieth day after Jesus was delivered from and defeated death (exodus) in the New Testament, the New Covenant was given to a new nation. The Holy Spirit was injected into all those gathering in the upper room.
This New Covenant was engaged.
The physical body of Jesus was no more. But the Body of Christ is alive! The Holy Spirit began to express the nature of Christ through His members…or through His Body.
Ever since the Day of Pentecost, Christ has been building His Church.
This Easter, let’s remember the fiftieth day…when the shadow of Christ and His expression was fulfilled and became reality. May we be in a place that allows us to express the nature of Christ!
Where will you be this Easter?