ENGLISH VERSION - Bulletin Nº 28 April 04, 2021
EASTER: Candy or Sacrament?
by Rev. Renato Souza Prates
Passover is considered one of the main Jewish festivals, as it celebrates the liberation of this people from Egyptian captivity, as described in Exodus 12. Since then, the people of Israel have celebrated this festival to the Lord. It was through Easter that Jesus introduced the sacrament of Holy Communion, as noted in Luke 22: 7-20. In this way, we understand that Easter was a harbinger of the Lord's Supper, since it prepared the way for the revelation of this important sacrament. Let us look at some ways in which this main Jewish festival, instituted by God, was a path that pointed to the Lord's Supper:
First of all, Easter symbolizes liberation. Being a celebration that recalls Israel's liberation from Egypt, Easter points to Holy Communion, in the sense that the latter also represents the liberation of the sinner from his state of death and sinful misery, as recorded in the text of Colossians 1.13: “He delivered us from the empire of darkness, and transported us to the kingdom of the Son of his love”. In other words, when Christ instituted Holy Communion, he spread the reality of God's New Covenant with his people, through his own sacrifice on the cross, on our behalf.
Second, Easter also symbolizes communion. When celebrating the ancient Passover, the Israelite family was to gather around the table and eat unleavened bread, bitter herbs and a roasted lamb. Likewise, when he instituted the Lord's Supper, Jesus Christ was with his family of faith: his disciples around the table, with the exception of the one who leaves the scene of the sacrament, according to John 13, Judas Iscariot. In this way, we can understand that celebrating Easter or Holy Communion is celebrating our communion with God and with our family of faith, which is the church, without neglecting our celebration as a natural family, who must also remember this moment with brotherhood and love.
Third, we can say that Easter symbolizes sacrifice. Just as a lamb was to be sacrificed to serve the Passover meal, Christ Jesus was spontaneously sacrificed by his chosen ones from the four corners of the earth, and from all times. Jesus is the Easter lamb who takes away the sin of the world, announced the prophet John, when he saw the Messiah who came to receive the second sacrament of the church, baptism. (John 1.29).
On this Easter Sunday, Sunday of the Resurrection, let us remember that Easter symbolizes liberation, for Christ freed us from the empire of death and brought us to his holy presence. Let us remember that Easter symbolizes communion and that we cannot help being together as a family of blood or faith, even if it is through a virtual meeting in times of pandemic. Let us also remember that Easter symbolizes sacrifice and that Jesus gave himself completely for us. He expects us to do the same not only for the people who love us, but especially for those who need us!
Easter symbolizes all this and much more! Candies and chocolate eggs will always be welcome, if we offer them or receive them as gratitude to God, for having sent his only son to save us! Happy Easter to everyone!
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