Easter, a Reference

This document briefly discusses Easter, which was made doctrine by “The Catholic Church”, WHERE it came from and WHAT it is…

Please note that this is not a Text-Study, but rather an information document to better understand the facts that surround Easter replacing Passover in the Nicene-“Christian” world…


The English term, according to the Ven. Bede (De temporum ratione, I, v), relates to Estre, a Teutonic goddess of the rising light of day and spring, which deity, however, is otherwise unknown, even in the Edda (Simrock, Mythol., 362); Anglo-Saxon, eâster, eâstron; Old High German, ôstra, ôstrara, ôstrarûn; German, Ostern. April was called easter-monadh. The plural eâstron is used, because the feast lasts seven days. Like the French plural Pâques, it is a translation from the Latin Festa Paschalia, the entire octave of Easter. The Greek term for Easter, pascha, has nothing in common with the verb paschein, “to suffer,” although by the later symbolic writers it was connected with it; it is the Aramaic form of the Hebrew pesach (transitus, passover). The Greeks called Easter the pascha anastasimon; Good Friday the pascha staurosimon. The respective terms used by the Latins are Pascha resurrectionis and Pascha crucifixionis. In the Roman and Monastic Breviaries the feast bears the title Dominica Resurrectionis; in the Mozarabic Breviary, In Lætatione Diei Pasch Resurrectionis; in the Ambrosian Breviary, In Die Sancto Paschæ. The Romance languages have adopted the Hebrew-Greek term: Latin, Pascha; Italian, Pasqua; Spanish, Pascua; French, Pâques. Also some Celtic and Teutonic nations use it: Scottish, Pask; Dutch, Paschen; The correct word in Dutch is actually Pasen Danish, Paaske; Swedish, Pask; even in the German provinces of the Lower Rhine the people call the feast Paisken not Ostern. The word is, principally in Spain and Italy, identified with the word “solemnity” and extended to other feasts, e.g. Sp., Pascua florida, Palm Sunday; Pascua de Pentecostes, Pentecost; Pascua de la Natividad, Christmas; Pascua de Epifania, Epiphany. In some parts of France also First Communion is called Pâques, whatever time of the year administered.

(The feast)

Easter is the principal feast of the ecclesiastical year. Leo I (Sermo xlvii in Exodum) calls it the greatest feast (festum festorum), and says that Christmas is celebrated only in preparation for Easter. It is the centre of the greater part of the ecclesiastical year. The order of Sundays from Septuagesima to the last Sunday after Pentecost, the feast of the Ascension, Pentecost, Corpus Christi, and all other movable feasts, from that of the Prayer of Jesus in the Garden (Tuesday after Septuagesima) to the feast of the Sacred Heart (Friday after the octave of Corpus Christi), depend upon the Easter date. Commemorating the slaying of the true Lamb of God and the Resurrection of Christ, the corner-stone upon which faith is built, it is also the oldest feast of the Christian Church, as old as Christianity, the connecting link between the Old and New Testaments.
THAT THE APOSTOLIC FATHERS DO NOT MENTION IT and THAT WE FIRST HEAR OF IT PRINCIPALLY THROUGH THE CONTROVERSY OF THE QUARTODECIMANS are purely accidental.



Love of The Truth note concerning the above statement:
“The Apostlic fathers DO NOT MENTION” the celebration of Easter… We DO see in The Bible just what it was that The Apostles of The Lord Jesus DID speak AND COMMAND to The Churches- they speak of celebrating “The Passover” of our Lord:
1 Cor. 5:7-8 (KJV)
Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us: [8] Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.
John 1:29 (KJV)
The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.
John 1:36 (KJV)
And looking upon Jesus as he walked, he saith, Behold the Lamb of God!


1 Peter 1:18-2:1 (KJV)
Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; [19] But with the precious blood of Christ, as of A LAMB WITHOUT BLEMISH AND WITHOUT SPOT: [20] Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you, [21] Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God.
[22] Seeing ye have PURIFIED YOUR SOULS IN OBEYING THE TRUTH through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently: [23] Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, BY THE WORD OF GOD, which liveth and abideth for ever. [24] For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away: [25] But the word of the Lord endureth for ever. And THIS IS THE WORD WHICH BY THE GOSPEL IS PREACHED UNTO YOU.
[2:1] Wherefore laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, and all evil speakings, [2] as newborn babes, DESIRE THE SINCERE MILK OF THE WORD, THAT YE MAY GROW THEREBY:


Notice The Controversy that is spoken of above, from which The Catholics have their first records of “Easter” appearing- during a time of CHANGE – a time of a great forsaking of what The Truth commanded The Church to observe (Passover and The Holy Days of God The Father of Jesus Christ):

Source: Catholice Encyclopedia:
( Controversy of The Quartodecimens – Easter Controversy )

Ecclesiastical history preserves the memory of three distinct phases of the dispute regarding the proper time of observing Easter. It will add to clearness if we in the first place state what is certain regarding the date and the nature of these three categories.

(First phase)
The first was mainly concerned with the lawfulness of celebrating Easter on a weekday. We read in Eusebius (Church History V.23): “A question of no small importance arose at that time [i.e. the time of Pope Victor, about A.D. 190]. The dioceses of all Asia, as from an older tradition, held that the fourteenth day of the moon, on which day the Jews were commanded to sacrifice the lamb, should always be observed as the feast of the life-giving pasch [epi tes tou soteriou Pascha heortes], contending that the fast ought to end on that day, whatever day of the week it might happen to be. However it was not the custom of the churches in the rest of the world to end it at this point, as they observed the practice, which from Apostolic tradition has prevailed to the present time, of terminating the fast on no other day than on that of the Resurrection of our Saviour.
Synods and assemblies of bishops were held on this account, and all with one consent through mutual correspondence drew up an ecclesiastical decree that the mystery of the Resurrection of the Lord should be celebrated on no other day but the Sunday and that we should observe the close of the paschal fast on that day only.” These words of the Father of Church History, followed by some extracts which he makes from the controversial letters of the time, tell us almost all that we know concerning the paschal controversy in its first stage.
A letter of St. Irenæus is among the extracts just referred to, and this shows that the diversity of practice regarding Easter had existed at least from the time of Pope Sixtus (c. 120). Further, Irenaeus states that St. Polycarp, who like THE OTHER ASIATICS, kept Easter on the fourteenth day of the moon, whatever day of the week that might be, following therein the tradition which he claimed to have derived from St. John the Apostle, came to Rome c. 150 about this very question, but could not be persuaded by Pope Anicetus to relinquish his Quartodeciman observance. Nevertheless he was not debarred from communion with the Roman Church, and St. Irenæus, while condemning the Quartodeciman practice, nevertheless reproaches Pope Victor (c. 189-99) with having excommunicated the Asiatics too precipitately and with not having followed the moderation of his predecessors.
The question thus debated was therefore primarily whether Easter was to be kept on a Sunday, or whether Christians should observe the Holy Day of the Jews, the fourteenth of Nisan, which might occur on any day of the week.
Those who kept Easter with the Jews were called Quartodecimans or terountes (observants); but even in the time of Pope Victor this usage hardly extended beyond THE CHURCHES OF ASIA MINOR.
After the pope’s strong measures the Quartodecimans seem to have gradually dwindled away.
Origen in the “Philosophumena” (VIII, xviii) SEEMS TO REGARD THEM AS A MERE HANDFUL OF WRONG-HEADED NONCONFORMISTS.

(Second phase)
The second stage in the Easter controversy centres round the Council of Nicaea (A.D. 325). Granted that the great Easter festival was always to be held on a Sunday, and was not to coincide with a particular phase of the moon, which might occur on any day of the week, a new dispute arose as to the determination of the Sunday itself……
……
The Council of Nicaea seems to have extended further the principle here laid down. As already stated, we have not its exact words, but we may safely infer from scattered notices that the council ruled:

– that Easter must be celebrated by all throughout the world on the same Sunday;
– that this Sunday must follow the fourteenth day of the paschal moon;
– that that moon was to be accounted the paschal moon whose fourteenth day followed the spring equinox;
– that some provision should be made, probably by the Church of Alexandria as best skilled in astronomical calculations, for determining the proper date of Easter and communicating it to the rest of the world (see St. Leo to the Emperor Marcian in Migne, P.L., LIV, 1055).

This ruling of the Council of Nicaea did not remove all difficulties nor at once win universal acceptance among the Syrians. But to judge from the strongly worded canon i of the Council of Antioch (A.D. 341; see Hefele-Leclereq, “Conciles”, I, 714), as also from the language of the Apostolic Constitutions and Canons (see Schmid, Osterfestfrage, p. 63), the Syrian bishops loyally co-operated in carrying into effect the decision of the Council of Nicaea. In Rome and Alexandria the lunar cycles by which the occurrence of Easter was determined was not uniform. Rome, after the hundred-and-twelve year cycle of Hippolytus, adopted an eighty-four year cycle, but neither gave satisfactory results. Alexandria adhered to the more accurate nineteen-year cycle of Meton. But it seems to be clearly established by the most recent researches (see Schwartz, op. cit., pp. 28-29) that the lunar cycles were never understood to be more than aids towards ascertaining the correct date of Easter, also that where the calculations of Rome and Alexandria led to divergent results, compromises were made upon both sides and that the final decision always lay with accepted ecclesiastical authority.

(Third phase)
It was to the divergent cycles which Rome had successively adopted and rejected in its attempt to determine Easter more accurately that the third stage in the paschal controversy was mainly due. The Roman missionaries coming to England in the time of St. Gregory the Great found the British Christians, the representatives of that Christianity which had been introduced into Britain during the period of the Roman occupation, still adhering to an ancient system of Easter-computation which Rome itself had laid aside………
……It was not until the Synod of Whitby in 664 that the Christians of Northern Britain, who had derived their instruction in the Faith from the Scottish (i.e. Irish) missionaries, at last at the instance of Bishop Wilfrid and through the example of King Oswy accepted the Roman system and came into friendly relations with the bishops of the South. Even then in Ireland and in parts of the North some years passed before the adoption of the Roman Easter became general (Moran, Essays on the Origin, Doctrines and Discipline of the Early Irish Church, Dublin, 1864).

( Points of obscurity )
These are the facts regarding the Easter controversy which are now generally admitted. Many other subsidiary details have an important bearing on the case but are more matters of conjecture. There is, for example, the perplexing doubt whether the Crucifixion of Christ took place on the fourteenth or fifteenth of Nisan. The Synoptists seem to favour the latter, St. John the former date. Clearly we should expect to find that according to the answer given to this question, the position of the earliest possible Easter Sunday in the lunar month would also change. Again, there is the problem, much debated by modern scholars, whether the Pasch which the early Christians desired to commemorate was primarily the Passion or the Resurrection of Christ. Upon this point also our date do not admit of a very positive answer. It has been very strongly urged that the writers of the first two centuries who speak of the Pasch have always in view the pascha staurosimon, the Crucifixion Day, when Jesus Christ Himself was offered as the Victim, the antitype of the Jewish paschal lamb. Supporters of this opinion often contend that the Resurrection was held to be sufficiently commemorated by the weekly Sunday, on the vigil of which the night-watch was kept, the Liturgy being celebrated in the morning. In any case it must be admitted that while in the New Testament we have definite mention of the observance of the Sunday, or “Lord’s Day”, there is no conclusive evidence in the first century or more of the keeping of the Pasch as a festival. Some are inclined to think that the Christian Easter first appears as setting a term to the great paschal fast which, as we learn from Irenaeus, was very variously kept in the sub-Apostolic Age. Another class of obscure and rather intricate questions, about which it is difficult to speak positively, regards the limits of the paschal period as laid down by the computation of rome before the tables of Dionysius Exiguus and the Metonic cycle were finally adopted there in 525. According to one system Easter Day might fall between the fourteenth and twentieth day inclusive of the paschal moon; and although this implies that when Easter fell on the fourteenth it coincided with the Jewish Pasch, the Roman Church, observing its eighty-four-year cycle, at one time permitted this (so at least Krusch contends; see “Der 84-jahrige Ostercyclus und seine Quellen”, pp. 20 and 65). Certain it is that the data of the supputatio Romana did not always agree with those of Alexandria, and in particular it seems that Rome, rejecting 22 March as the earliest possible date of Easter, only allowed the 23rd, while, on the other hand, the latest possible date according to the Roman system was 21 April. This sometimes brought about an impasse which was relieved only by accepting the Alexandrian solution. Other computations allowed Easter to fall between the fifteenth and twenty-first day of the paschal moon and others between the sixteenth and the twenty- second.
What is perhaps most important to remember, both in the solution adopted in 525 and in that officially put forward at the time of the reform of the Calendar by Gregory XIII, is this, that the Church throughout held that the determination of Easter was primarily a matter of ecclesiastical discipline and not of astronomical science. As Professor De Morgan long ago clearly recognized, the moon according to which Easter is calculated is not the moon in the heavens nor even the mean moon, i.e. a moon traveling with the average motion of the real moon, but simply the moon of the calendar. This calendar moon is admittedly a fiction, though it departs very little from the actual astronomical facts; but in following the simple rule given for the dependence of Easter upon the moon of the calendar, uniformity is secured for all countries of the world. According to this rule, Easter Sunday is the first Sunday which occurs after the first full moon (or more accurately after the first fourteenth day of the moon) following the 21st of March. As a result, the earliest possible date of Easter is 22 March, the latest 25 April.



Article Continued
(The Feast)
The connection between the Jewish Passover and the Christian feast of Easter is real and ideal. Real, since Christ died on the first Jewish Easter Day; ideal, like the relation between type and reality, because Christ’s death and Resurrection had its figures and types in the Old Law, particularly in the paschal lamb, which was eaten towards evening of the 14th of Nisan. In fact, THE JEWISH FEAST WAS TAKEN OVER INTO THE CHRISTIAN EASTER CELEBRATION; the liturgy (Exsultet) sings of the passing of Israel through the Red Sea, the paschal lamb, the column of fire, etc. Apart, however, from the Jewish feast, the Christians would have celebrated the anniversary of the death and the Resurrection of Christ. But for such a feast it was necessary to know the exact calendar date of Christ’s death.

Christ Jesus Death & Resurrection – “THREE Days and THREE Nights
Love of The Truth Note:
The Bible teaches clearly WHICH day of the week and month (as well as time of day) that Christ Jesus suffered and died as “our Passover” “Lamb of God”. The Truth also teaches us exactly WHEN He raised from the dead, and then again WHEN He was received up to The Father as our eternal Savior and High Priest (fulfilling The Law of God for The Passover’s requirements in every aspect)…
To examine The BIBLICAL testimony (The Word of God) concerning this matter (Jesus DID NOT rise on “Easter Sunday”), you may refer to the following Text-Study:
“Jesus Christ (Johshua Messiah)- The Wave Sheaf and Firstfruits”



Article continued:
To know this day was very simple for the Jews; it was the day after the 14th of the first month, the 15th of Nisan of their calendar. But in other countries of the vast Roman Empire there were other systems of chronology. The Romans from 45 B.C. had used the reformed Julian calendar; there were also the Egyptian and the Syro-Macedonian calendar. The foundation of the Jewish calendar was the lunar year of 354 days, whilst the other systems depended on the solar year. In consequence the first days of the Jewish months and years did not coincide with any fixed days of the Roman solar year.

Love of The Truth Note:
The Hebrew Calendar follows the moon cycles, while also calculating seasonal changes in Sun and stars (all aspects of God’s creation are factored in, rather than merely following the sun, or again merely following the moon). It is because of this that the Hebrew calendar is Biblical, and as such a method that the Christian should adhere to:

Genesis 1:4-5 (KJV)
And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness. [5] And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. AND THE EVENING AND THE MORNING were The First Day.

Genesis 1:14-15 (KJV)
And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and FOR SEASONS, and FOR DAYS, AND YEARS: [15] And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so.


Leviticus 23:32 (KJV)
from even unto even, shall ye celebrate your sabbath.


Isaiah 66:23 (KJV)
And it shall come to pass, that FROM ONE NEW MOON to another, and from one sabbath to another, shall ALL FLESH come to worship before me, saith the Lord.


Notice- God’s definition of a day (24 hour day) is “even to even” (sunset to sunset); evening comes as the beginning of the new day (not midnight, as with Roman culture). The sun, moon, and stars are given (were created by God) for a reason- “for day and night”, “for signs”, “FOR SEASONS”, “FOR DAYS, AND YEARS”… A figuring of time for mankind (calendar).
For what calculations The Church of The Apostles followed, one need only read The Bible- they followed the God-given method for days, years, season (keeping Sabbaths and Holy Days as given and sanctified by God in HIS Word).



Article Continued:
Every fourth year of the Jewish system had an intercalary month. Since this month was inserted, not according to some scientific method or some definite rule, but arbitrarily, by command of the Sanhedrin, a distant Jewish date can never with certainty be transposed into the corresponding Julian or Gregorian date (Ideler, Chronologie, I, 570 sq.). The connection between the Jewish and the Christian Pasch explains the movable character of this feast. Easter has no fixed date, like Christmas, because the 15th of Nisan of the Semitic calendar was shifting from date to date on the Julian calendar. SINCE CHRIST, THE TRUE PASCHAL LAMB, HAD BEEN SLAIN ON THE VERY DAY WHEN THE JEWS, IN CELEBRATION OF THEIR PASSOVER, IMMOLATED THE FIGURATIVE LAMB, THE JEWISH CHRISTIANS IN THE ORIENT FOLLOWED THE JEWISH METHOD, and commemorated the death of Christ on the 15th of Nisan and His Resurrection on the 17th of Nisan, no matter on what day of the week they fell. For this observance they claimed the authority of St. John and St. Philip.
In the rest of the empire another consideration predominated. Every Sunday of the year was a commemoration of the Resurrection of Christ, which had occurred on a Sunday.

Love of The Truth Note:
First, notice that eastern “Christians” were keeping Passover as the commemoration of Christ’s death, not “Easter”…
And secondly, note that throughout this article, it is taken as fact that Christ Jesus rose from the dead on a “Sunday” – this is assumed through common Nicene-Christian teachings (not The Scriptures)… Again, The Bible itself speaks clearly on this matter.


Because the Sunday after 14 Nisan was the historical day of the Resurrection, at Rome this Sunday became the Christian feast of Easter. Easter was celebrated in Rome and Alexandria on the first Sunday AFTER THE FIRST FULL MOON after the spring equinox, and the Roman Church claimed for this observance the authority of Sts. Peter and Paul. The spring equinox in Rome fell on 25 March; in Alexandria on 21 March. At Antioch Easter was kept on the Sunday after the Jewish Passover. (See EASTER CONTROVERSY.)

Love of The Truth Note:
“the Roman Church claimed for this observance the authority of Sts. Peter and Paul”– this statement does not mean that Paul and Peter actually preached on this matter at all– rather what is meant here in this statement is that they intend to take the seat of authority (as Paul and Peter had over the Church as Apostle of The Lord), in order to establish something as doctrine for the entire church of believers here – yet The Bible itself shows that The Lord’s chosen Apostles NEVER TAUGHT ANYTHING as doctrine that was not first taught by God in His own Word all along (never changing anything to do with The Law of God- see Mtt. 5:18-19)…

Paul’s own words in The Bible reveal exactly what “Feast” was observed by The Church in Christ Jesus:
“Your glorying is not good. Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump? [7] Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even CHRIST OUR PASSOVER is sacrificed for us: [8] THEREFORE LET US KEEP THE FEAST, not with OLD LEAVEN, neither WITH THE LEAVEN of malice and wickedness; but with THE UNLEAVENED BREAD of sincerity and truth.” – 1 Cor. 5

And again, when marking time in their journey’s- what observances were they adhering to? The Holy Feast Days of The LORD God (Father of Jesus Christ)-
Acts 20:6 (KJV)
And we sailed away from Philippi after The Days of Unleavened Bread, and came unto them to Troas in five days; where we abode seven days.


You may refer to the following study, for the Biblical testimony (God’s recorded word) on The Sabbath and Holy Feast Days that God ordained for His Church (The Body of Jesus Christ):
“Why The Church of Christ Keeps The Sabbath and Holy Days”


Article Continued:
In Gaul a number of bishops, wishing to escape the difficulties of the paschal computation, seem to have assigned Easter to a fixed date of the Roman calendar, celebrating the death of Christ on 25 March, His Resurrection on 27 March (Marinus Dumiensis in P.L., LXXII, 47-51), since already in the third century 25 March was considered the day of the Crucifixion (Computus Pseudocyprianus, ed. Lersch, Chronologie, II, 61). This practice was of short duration. Many calendars in the Middle Ages contain these same dates (25 March, 27 March) for purely historical, not liturgical, reasons (Grotenfend, Zeitrechnung, II, 46, 60, 72, 106, 110, etc.). The Montanists in Asia Minor kept Easter on the Sunday after 6 April (Schmid, Osterfestberechnung in der abendlandischen Kirche). The First Council of Nicaea (325) decreed that the Roman practice should be observed throughout the Church. But even at Rome the Easter term was changed repeatedly. Those who continued to keep Easter with the Jews were called Quartodecimans (14 Nisan) and were excluded from the Church. The computus paschalis, the method of determining the date of Easter and the dependent feasts, was of old considered so important that Durandus (Rit. div. off., 8, c.i.) declares a priest unworthy of the name who does not know the computus paschalis. The movable character of Easter (22 March to 25 April) gives rise to inconveniences, especially in modern times. For decades scientists and other people have worked in vain for a simplification of the computus, assigning Easter to the first Sunday in April or to the Sunday nearest the 7th of April. Some even wish to put every Sunday to a certain date of the month, e.g. beginning with New Year’s always on a Sunday, etc. [See L. Günther, “Zeitschrift Weltall” (1903); Sandhage and P. Dueren in “Pastor bonus” (Trier, 1906); C. Tondini, “L’Italia e la questione del Calendario” (Florence, 1905).]


Peculiar customs of Easter time

Risus Paschalis
This strange custom originated in Bavaria in the fifteenth century. The priest inserted in his sermon funny stories which would cause his hearers to laugh (Ostermärlein), e.g. a description of how the devil tries to keep the doors of hell locked against the descending Christ. Then the speaker would draw the moral from the story. This Easter laughter, giving rise to grave abuses of the word of God, was prohibited by Clement X (1670-1676) and in the eighteenth century by Maximilian III and the bishops of Bavaria (Wagner, De Risu Paschali, Königsberg, 1705; Linsemeier, Predigt in Deutschland, Munich, 1886).

EASTER EGGS
Because the use of eggs was forbidden during Lent, they were brought to the table on Easter Day, coloured red to symbolize the Easter joy. This custom is found not only in the Latin but also in the Oriental Churches. The symbolic meaning of a new creation of mankind by Jesus risen from the dead was probably an invention of later times. THE CUSTOM MAY HAVE ITS ORIGIN IN PAGANISM, FOR A GREAT MANY PAGAN CUSTOMS, CELEBRATING THE RETURN OF SPRING, GRAVITATED TO EASTER. THE EGG IS THE EMBLEM OF THE GERMINATING LIFE OF EARLY SPRING. Easter eggs, the children are told, come from Rome with the bells which on Thursday go to Rome and return Saturday morning. The sponsors in some countries give Easter eggs to their god-children. Coloured eggs are used by children at Easter in a sort of game which consists in testing the strength of the shells (Kraus, Real-Encyklopædie, s.v. Ei). Both coloured and uncoloured eggs are used in some parts of the United States for this game, known as “egg-picking”. Another practice is the “egg-rolling” by children on Easter Monday on the lawn of the White House in Washington.

The Easter rabbit
The Easter Rabbit lays the eggs, for which reason they are hidden in a nest or in the garden. THE RABBIT IS A PAGAN SYMBOL AND HAS ALWAYS BEEN AN EMBLEM OF FERTILITY (Simrock, Mythologie, 551).

The Easter fire
The Easter Fire is lit on the top of mountains (Easter mountain, Osterberg) and must be kindled from new fire, drawn from wood by friction (nodfyr); THIS IS A CUSTOM OF PAGAN ORIGIN IN VOGUE ALL OVER EUROPE, SIGNIFYING THE VICTORY OF SPRING OVER WINTER. The bishops issued severe edicts against the sacrilegious Easter fires (Conc. Germanicum, a. 742, c.v.; Council of Lestines, a. 743, n. 15), but did not succeed in abolishing them everywhere. The Church adopted the observance into the Easter ceremonies, referring it to the fiery column in the desert and to the Resurrection of Christ; the new fire on Holy Saturday is drawn from flint, symbolizing the Resurrection of the Light of the World from the tomb closed by a stone (Missale Rom.). In some places a figure was thrown into the Easter fire, symbolizing winter, but to the Christians on the Rhine, in Tyrol and Bohemia, Judas the traitor (Reinsberg-Düringfeld, Das festliche Jahr, 112 sq.).

Processions and awakenings
At Puy in France, from time immemorial to the tenth century, it was customary, when at the first psalm of Matins a canon was absent from the choir, for some of the canons and vicars, taking with them the processional cross and the holy water, to go to the house of the absentee, sing the “Haec Dies”, sprinkle him with water, if he was still in bed, and lead him to the church. In punishment he had to give a breakfast to his conductors. A similar custom is found in the fifteenth century at Nantes and Angers, where it was prohibited by the diocesan synods in 1431 and 1448. In some parts of Germany parents and children try to surprise each other in bed on Easter morning to apply the health-giving switches (Freyde, Ostern in deutscher Sage, Sitte und Dichtung, 1893).

Blessing of food
In both the Oriental and Latin Churches, it is customary to have those victuals which were prohibited during Lent blessed by the priests before eating them on Easter Day, especially meat, eggs, butter, and cheese (Ritualbucher, Paderborn, 1904; Maximilianus, Liturg. or., 117). Those who ate before the food was blessed, according to popular belief, were punished by God, sometimes instantaneously (Migne, Liturgie, s.v. Pâques).

House blessings
On the eve of Easter the homes are blessed (Rit. Rom., tit. 8, c. iv) in memory of the passing of the angel in Egypt and the signing of the door-posts with the blood of the paschal lamb. The parish priest visits the houses of his parish; the papal apartments are also blessed on this day. The room, however, in which the pope is found by the visiting cardinal is blessed by the pontiff himself (Moroni, Dizionaria, s.v. Pasqua).


Love of The Truth’s Summation:
Please notice that the summation of all of this is aptly described for us in The Bible (The Word of God/ The Truth):

2 Tim. 4:2-5 (KJV)
Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. [3] For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but AFTER THEIR OWN LUSTS SHALL THEY HEAP TO THEMSELVES TEACHERS, HAVING ITCHING EARS;
[4] And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, AND SHALL BE TURNED UNTO FABLES.
[5] But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry.


2 Thes. 2:7-12 (KJV)
For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way. [8] And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: [9] Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, [10] And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
[11] And FOR THIS CAUSE God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:
[12] That THEY ALL MIGHT BE DAMNED WHO BELIEVED NOT THE TRUTH, BUT HAD PLEASURE IN UNRIGHTEOUSNESS.


Matthew 15:3-9 (KJV)
But He answered and said unto them, Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition?
[4] For GOD COMMANDED, saying, Honour thy father and mother: and, He that curseth father or mother, let him die the death. [5] BUT YE SAY, Whosoever shall say to his father or his mother, It is a gift, by whatsoever thou mightest be profited by me; [6] And honour not his father or his mother, he shall be free. THUS HAVE YE MADE THE COMMANDMENT OF GOD OF NONE EFFECT BY YOUR TRADITION.
[7] YE HYPOCRITES, well did Esaias prophesy of you, saying, [8] This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.
[9] But in vain they do worship me, TEACHING FOR DOCTRINES THE COMMANDMENTS OF MEN.
Matthew 16:11-12 (NASB)
“…How is it that you do not understand that I did not speak to you concerning bread? But BEWARE OF THE LEAVEN OF THE PHARISEES AND SADDUCEES.” [12] Then they understood that He did not say to beware of the leaven of bread, BUT OF THE TEACHING OF THE PHARISEES AND SADDUCEES.


Deut. 4:1-3 (KJV)
Now therefore HEARKEN, O ISRAEL, UNTO THE STATUTES AND UNTO THE JUDGMENTS, which I teach you, for TO DO THEM, THAT YE MAY LIVE, and go in and possess the land which the Lord God of your fathers giveth you.
[2] YE SHALL NOT ADD UNTO THE WORD WHICH I COMMAND YOU, NEITHER SHALL YE DIMINISH OUGHT FROM IT, THAT YE MAY KEEP THE COMMANDMENTS OF THE LORD YOUR GOD which I command you. [3] Your eyes have seen what the Lord did because of Baal-peor: for all the men that followed Baal-peor, the Lord thy God hath destroyed them from among you.


1 Cor. 4:6 (NASB)
…Now these things, brethren, I have figuratively applied to myself and Apollos for your sakes, that in us you might learn NOT TO EXCEED WHAT IS WRITTEN, in order that no one of you might become arrogant in behalf of one against the other.


You may refer to the following Study-helps for God’s Word concerning the SINFUL nature of observing such practices as Easter, Halloween, Christmas, and the many traditions of men that try to annul and substitute The Commandments of God (The Father of Jesus Christ, and Father of all TRUE Christians):

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