Easter Eggs Are Pagan. . . So, Should Christians Ban Them?


IMG_1163

The festival was for Eastre,
Goddess of fertility.
But they swept it away,
With a cross of humility.
They took over the sunrise–
Coloured eggs were hidden,
They introduced religion,
And pagans were forbidden.

Then the bunnies
Hopped back,
With the chicks
And the eggs.
Spring flowers
In bright posies
Feast times
And families.

But beneath it all
Well hidden within,
Was a story of death
And the blackness of sin.
The anguish of God
Turning his back.
A story of tears
When the world went black.
That tragic tale,
Which won’t go away,
Has a promise of peace
That we long for today.
And the torture and pain
And despair of that day,
Is why God turns and listens
When we kneel and pray.

IMG_1188

***

Originally, at this time of year, there was a pagan festival for Eastre (sometimes spelt with an ‘O’) who was the goddess of fertility. That is where the sunrise, eggs, bunnies and chicks come from. People gave gifts of eggs to enhance fertility, there was dancing at sunrise, a bit of a party.

Then the Christians arrived and they wanted to celebrate the death and resurrection of Jesus. Rather than create their own festival, as the resurrection happened at Passover time (a Jewish festival timed by the phases of the moon) and this was a similar time to the Eastre festival, they sort of merged the two. Everyone was used to having a happy time, so why not simply change the focus? It seemed to work, and gradually people forgot why they were using symbols of fertility, and they became symbols of new life, a promise of what we find if we let God into our lives. It is a little like the Christmas festival, which today we use to celebrate the birth of Jesus, but once was a pagan Winter Festival (there were no fir trees when Jesus was born!)

Does it matter? Should Christians refuse to give gifts of eggs, because the tradition is pagan? Well, I don’t think so. If you read some of the letters in the Bible, the first believers in Jesus were told that if it didn’t cause anyone a problem, then they could eat meat that had been offered to idols. When I give chocolate eggs to my friends and family, I don’t think any of them assume this will improve their fertility! It’s just an egg. The Bible also tells us that celebrations are good, we were designed to have festivals and special times. So try to make today special, whether it is with eggs or a big dinner or some other treat. Remember that Jesus rose up from the dead, which means we really can talk to him, however fed-up we might be feeling, whatever struggles we’re facing right now. Jesus is alive, and he’s on our side.

Thank you for reading. Have a lovely day.
Love, Anne x

***

Thank you for reading.
Why not sign up to follow my blog?
anneethompson.com

***

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.