By Dr. Rex Horne

Executive Director, Arkansas Baptist State Convention

[Perspective] Celebrating Easter

By Dr. Rex Horne

Executive Director, Arkansas Baptist State Convention

Celebrations of significant events and experiences are important. They range from birthdays and anniversaries to worldwide events that changed nations and their citizens. Why celebrate?  

I browsed this topic and found similar thoughts. Some mention that it is good to remember so we can see areas of needed improvement, assess the present and commit to the future. I think it is important in celebration to approach these times with gratitude, humility, and appreciation.   

There are days that are unique because they impact eternity. Surely, Christmas and Easter are unique because we celebrate God incarnate, Jesus who is fully God and fully man. We go beyond celebration as we live in the light of Jesus’ resurrection every day. He conquered death, hell, and the grave. He died for our sins and was raised for our justification, Romans 4:25. A modern translation states, “He was handed over to die because of our sins, and he was raised to life to make us right with God. 

Every Easter I look back. I think of Easters long ago when we visited my Big Mama and Big Papa. We would worship at the Canaan Baptist Church, outside Lockhart in north Louisiana. The church was very small, with short pews on either side of the center aisle. Big Papa sat on the second row on one side. Across the aisle, Big Mama sat on the second row? Why? All I can figure is that they had so many kids that they could not all sit on one row. Like good Baptists, they had their seats and stayed there even though their children were all gone with children of their own.  

I remember the singing. “Death cannot keep his prey, Jesus, my Savior! He tore the bars away, Jesus, my Lord.” Then the little building felt it was shaking as we all sang to the top of our lungs, “Up from the grave He arose with a mighty triumph o’er His foes. He arose a victor from the dark domain, and He lives forever with His saints to reign. He arose! He arose! Hallelujah! Christ arose!”  I can see Big Mama, Big Papa, Mom, Dad and brother, Art, all in our Easter clothes celebrating the resurrection of Jesus. 

I look back, but mostly look forward these days. Art and I are still on this side, but nearly all of those in Canaan Baptist those past Easters are celebrating Easter with Jesus in Heaven. Until that time comes, let us preach and proclaim the gospel on Easter Sunday and every Sunday. Jesus died for our sins. God raised him from the dead. By His grace we have victory today and for all eternity. We have the certain hope of life in Heaven and a reunion with those who arrived in Heaven before us. We will see Jesus and thank Him again and again for His grace and sacrifice for us.  Let’s celebrate! 

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2 Responses

  1. Thanks, Dr. Horne. I love the “down home” context of the celebration of the great truth and our eternal hope.

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