The cartoon This Funny World once showed a couple leaving church. The wife said to her husband, “I’ll tell you why it’s always the same old sermon. The only time you come is on Easter Sunday, that’s why!”

-Michael Shannon, Preaching March/April 2002

Check out more great articles

About The Author

Shortly before Easter, Bob’s son drew a picture of the crucifixion scene. Bob noticed the picture had an airplane in the top corner.

“Son, this is a wonderful picture,” Bob said. “But what is the airplane doing?”

“Dad, don’t you know?” the boy replied. “That’s Pontius Pilot!”

(from the Kidwarmers newsletter)

Check out more great articles

About The Author

Don Aycock tells the story of Menelik II, who was the Emperor of Ethiopia from 1889 until 1913: “News of a successful new means of dispatching criminals reached him. The news was about a device known as an electric chair. The Emperor eagerly ordered one for his country. Unfortunately, no one bothered to warn him that it would never work because Ethiopia at that time had no electricity. Menelik was determined that his new purchase should not go to waste. He converted the electric chair into a throne.

“There was another occasion when an instrument of death became a throne. On a Palestinian hillside about twenty centuries ago a cross became a throne for one named Jesus of Nazareth. To this day that ancient instrument of torture and death is converted into a powerful symbol of life, hope, and resurrection. Millions of people around the world see the cross as God’s way of indicating His refusal to let death and destruction have the final word.”

Check out more great articles

About The Author

The word Easter goes back to Eastre, which was the Teutonic spring goddess for whom sacrifices were offered in April. This provoked the faithful to make sure the date of Easter Day could be moved. They didn’t want it to coincide with pagan holidays. So the dating of Easter Day was fixed by the Council of Nicea in AD 325 to be “on the first Sunday after the date of the first full moon after the vernal equinox, March 21, except when the full moon falls on Sunday, when Easter is one week later.”

While I am completely baffled by that formula, I know 75% of the church’s calendar is determined by the date of Easter. As Frank Wilson wrote, “Easter is the axis on which the Christian year revolves.” Or as Paul wrote, “If Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain” (1 Cor. 15).

In short, without resurrection, there is no Christian calendar. There is no Christianity without the resurrection!

(Robert Kopp, Bethany Presbyterian Church, Loves Park, IL)

Check out more great articles

About The Author

Wally Rendel, Pastor of Southern Acres Christian Church in Lexington, KY, sent this moving story in response to our request for Easter illustrations and sermon ideas:

Our daughter, Jill Marie Rendel, was a senior at the Cincinnati Bible College and Seminary, preparing for a children’s ministry position in the local church. In February of 1993 she was traveling with the girl’s basketball team, heading for Battle Creek, Michigan and a tournament. On icy roads the driver lost control. The school van spun out of control and overturned several times. Jill was thrown out and crushed to death. Only four days earlier, on the college campus, she had been crowned homecoming queen. As word spread of her death someone remarked – “The queen has gone to meet the King.” And she did! That’s the blessed assurance of everyone who has put their faith and hope in the resurrected Son of the Living God.

When Jill was in middle school she wrote this poem:

Easter is the time of year
When people come from far and near
And every part and all directions
To celebrate Christ’s resurrection.

Resurrection is the name
Of the deed that gained the fame,
When Christ the King was crucified
Then three days later made alive!!

~ Jill Marie Rendel

Check out more great articles

About The Author

“The great Easter truth is not that we are to live newly after death – that is not the great thing – but that we are to live here and now by the power of the resurrection; not so much that we are to live forever as that we are to, and may, live nobly now because we are to live forever.”

-Phillip Brooks

 

Check out more great articles

About The Author

A group of 4-year-olds was gathered in a Sunday School class in Chattanooga. The teacher looked at the class and asked this question: “Does anyone know what today is?” A little girl held up her hand and said, “Yes, today is Palm Sunday.” The teacher exclaimed, “That’s fantastic, that’s wonderful. Now does anyone know what next Sunday is?” The same little girl held up her hand and said, “Yes, next Sunday is Easter Sunday.” Once again the teacher said “That’s fantastic. Now does anyone know what makes next Sunday Easter?” The same little girl responded and said, “Yes, next Sunday is Easter because Jesus rose from the grave” and before the teacher could congratulate her, she kept on talking and said, “but if He sees his shadow… He has to go back in for seven weeks.”

-Ben Haden

Check out more great articles

About The Author

During Napoleon’s Austrian campaign his army advanced to within six miles of Feldkirch. It looked as though Bonaparte’s men would take Feldkirch without resistance. But as Napoleon’s army advanced toward their objective in the night, the Christian’s of Feldkirch gathered in a little church to pray. It was Easter Eve.

The next morning at sunrise the bells of the village pealed out across the countryside. Napoleon’s army, not realizing it was Easter Sunday, thought that in the night the Austrian army had moved into Feldkirch and that the bells were ringing in jubilation. Napoleon ordered a retreat, and the battle at Feldkirch never took place. The Easter bells caused the enemy to retreat, and peace reigned in the Austrian countryside.

At this Easter time many of you are surrounded by enemies which storm the citadel of your soul. The Easter bells, when you realize their full significance, will cause the threatening forces to retreat.

Check out more great articles

About The Author

The cartoon This Funny World once showed a couple leaving church. The wife said to her husband, “I’ll tell you why it’s always the same old sermon. The only time you come is on Easter Sunday, that’s why!”


Check out more great articles

About The Author