16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.
17″ For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him.
18″ He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only
begotten Son of God.
19″ This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil.
20″ For everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light for fear that his deeds will be exposed.
21″ But he who practices the truth comes to the Light, so that his deeds may be manifested as having been wrought in God.”
In the time of Moses the children of Israel, God’s chosen people, were taught to love God so they might know Him. They were given 10 Commandments by which they could live in a way that pleased Him and provided order to how they should coexist with one another. This was God’s covenant with the Children of Israel.
In the time of Jesus, His Disciples were commanded to love one another so that they might know God, and through them, show all the people – Jew and Gentile, and all others – how to know God and to love Him. Jesus, in Matthew 5, reaffirmed God’s 10 Commandments, and instructed us on what to aspire to, that we might find salvation and ascend in our time to join Him in the Kingdom of Heaven:
Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
The Pashcal Mystery then, this new covenant with God through Christ’s life, passion, death, resurrection, and ascension to the right hand of God the Father, was the ultimate expression of God’s love for us. In sacrificing His own son, the love from the Father to His children and the return of that love to Him, through His son Jesus Christ, God affirmed His unending and unconditional love for all of us.
Be you Jewish, Christian, Agnostic, or Atheist…the love we have for one another, and the ways in which we express it one TO another, is the story of what marks the significance of this day. Let us remember not the crisis over eggs and jelly beans and rabbit-shaped chocolate, but rather the deeper meaning of what we celebrate today; the Fellowship of Man. This lies at the base of all we should remember as we go forth, making the rounds with family and friends this Easter Sunday.
If you are a Jew, may God’s grace be with you as you complete your Passover celebration. If you are a Christian, may you be filled to overflowing with the fullness of the faith. If you are not religiously or spiritually inclined, may you be filled and renewed by the love and compassion of those with whom you spend this day.
May The Lord bless you and keep you.
May the Lord make his face to shine upon you, and be gracious to you.
May the Lord lift up his countenance upon you, and give you peace.