Church pews will be fuller April 8, than on any other Sunday of the year.
Rightfully so, as people recognize and celebrate the greatest day of all eternity.
Sad part of the glorious Easter will be that the next weekend, church attendance will approach an all time low. Likewise, church attendance increases during the Christmas season, and it is always record low the following week.
While the Bible has much in it about Easter, most of us really don’t know or remember what happened during Holy Week. Proof of our own naiveness came recently when we took two 15-question tests about Easter and failed both miserably.
St. John 3:16 says it best, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
Holy Thursday celebrates the Passover supper, when Jesus gathered his twelve disciples, explained what was about to happen and instituted Holy Communion.
St. Matthew 26:26-29 explains, “Jesus took bread, blessed it, broke it, gave to the disciples and said, Take this and eat it: this is my body which will be given up for you. He then took the cup, gave thanks, gave it to them and said, Drink this: the blood of the new and everlasting covenant, which is shed for you so that sins may be forgiven. I will not drink henceforth of this wine, until I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.”
Good Friday is in remembrance of Jesus being misjudged, abused, mocked, ridiculed and nailed to a cross alongside two criminals. At noon, darkness fell across the whole land until 3 o’clock. According to St. Matthew 27:46, “Jesus cried out, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”
Jesus cried again and died upon which: (St. Matthew 27:51-52) “The earth did quake. The graves were opened, and many bodies of the saints which slept arose.” The Roman officer facing Jesus exclaimed, (St. Matthew 27:54) “Truly, this was the Son of God.”
Holy Saturday gives one an overwhelming sense of emptiness. The alter is bare, the tabernacle is vacant; basically churches are empty, just as Jesus emptied himself to us.
Easter is the Sunday of all Sundays as Jesus has been raised from the dead. He proclaimed, (St. Mark 16:15-16) “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.”