by Timothy A. & Kimberly B. Southall
Revised January 9, 2001
Many Christians are unaware of the origins of Easter, which is actually a pagan festival held in honor of idols. In fact, Easter was celebrated hundreds of years before the birth of Jesus Christ. It wasn't until at least 300 years after the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ and the establishment of his church that the celebration of his resurrection began to be intermingled with the pagan practices of Easter. You should know the truth.
Origins of the Word "Easter" and
the Goddess it Represents. "Easter" is derived from "Eostre," the
pagan Anglo-Saxon goddess, and/or "Eostare," the Norse pagan festival of
spring. When God gave the law to the Israelites in the Old Testament, he
clearly instructed them not to even utter the name of other gods (
What, other than the obvious connection of the words "Easter" and "Eostre" does this goddess have to do with the modern celebration of Easter? Plenty.
Easter's connection with spring and nature. Diana (the Ephesian goddess of sex, fertility, virginity and motherhood) was said to be the source of nature. Eostre (an Anglo-Saxon/Teutonic goddess) was the goddess of the sunrise and spring. Ostara (a Norse/Saxon goddess) was the maiden goddess of spring.
Origins of Hares (Bunnies) and Eggs. According to Teutonic myth, the hare was once a bird whom Eostre changed into a four-footed creature. Thus, it can also lay eggs. The hare is also the sacred companion and sacrificial victim of Eostre. Astarte (a Phoenician/Syrian goddess), on the other hand, was believed to have been hatched from a huge egg which fell into the Euphrates.
Origins of Good Friday. Did
you ever wonder why Good Friday is recognized as the day Jesus died and
Sunday as the day he arose but yet had trouble explaining how he could
thus be buried for three days and three nights? (
Origins of Hot Cross Buns and Fires.
Cakes bearing a cross-like symbol representing the pair of cow-horns on
the moon goddess, Isis, were offered by ancient Egyptians. The cakes which
Greeks offered to Astarte and other divinities were called bous or boun,
from which the word "bun" is derived. The Babylonians/Chaldeans offered
similar cakes to the "Queen of Heaven." Fires were lit on top of mountains
and had to be kindled from new fire, drawn from wood by friction. The fire
was then used to bake cakes in sacrifice to Semiramis, the "Queen of Heaven."
This practice, along with burning incense, was used in conjunction with
baking the cakes and is mentioned specifically in the Bible (
Origins of Lent. The word
"lent" is of Anglo-Saxon origin meaning "spring." Lent developed from the
pagan celebration of weeping, fasting, and mourning for 40 days over the
death of Tammuz (one day for each year of his life). Tammuz (the son/husband
of the Babylonian idol Ishtar) was killed by a wild boar and then allegedly
resurrected. This mourning of Tammuz is specifically prophesied by Ezekiel
in the Bible and is characterized by God Himself as being detestable (
Origins of the use of the lily. Asherah (a Sidonian goddess) was frequently represented as a nude woman bestride a lion with a lily (symbolizing grace and sex appeal) in one hand and a serpent (symbolizing fecundity) in the other.
Origins of wearing new clothing for Easter. The tradition of wearing new clothing for Easter comes from the superstition that a new garment worn at Easter means good luck throughout the year.
Origins of the timing. The timing of the festival of "Eostar" (the festival of spring) predates the birth of Jesus Christ, and the festival was always celebrated in conjunction with pagan idol worship. In 325 A.D. it was conveniently linked to the full moon on or following the spring or vernal equinox, March 21, when nature is in resurrection after winter. This is also when Easter is celebrated in modern times. The timing of Jesus' resurrection is linked to the Passover rather than to the vernal equinox.
Who celebrates Easter? Witches,
who base their celebrations (including Halloween) on the phases of the
moon, celebrate Easter. Christians, however, are clearly forbidden from
observing this pagan celebration (
Honoring Christ. While there
isn't anything wrong with spring, nature, rabbits, eggs, pastries, fires,
lilies, or wearing new clothing, doing or observing such things only for
"Easter" is either knowingly or unknowingly participating in pagan practices.
Christians who do not yet see anything wrong with such practices should
prayerfully read and study
The intent of most Christians who celebrate "Easter" is actually to remember and honor Jesus Christ. Rather than celebrate His resurrection with worldly traditions, there are biblical ways for Christians.
First, we should call biblical things by Bible names. Rather than using the name of a false goddess, "Easter," Christians should use words which do not dishonor God. Some acceptable terms are "Resurrection Day" and "Resurrection Sunday."
The death, burial and resurrection of Jesus
can still be remembered through observance of the Lord's Supper (
Christians should always remember that the focus of the resurrection is Jesus Christ. Surely His sacrifice is enough. Easter eggs, Easter bunnies, and other pagan activities which add worldliness and traditions of men are unnecessary in our observation of Resurrection Day.
A decision to make. You now
have a decision to make concerning Easter. In the oft-quoted words of Joshua:
"Now fear the Lord and serve him with all faithfulness. Throw away the
gods your forefathers worshiped beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve
the Lord. But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose
for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers
served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you
are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord." (
Copyright © 1998-2001 Timothy A. & Kimberly B. Southall
Still Undecided About Whether
Or Not You Should Celebrate "Easter"?