Monday, April 09, 2007

Easter Weather

First Sight of the Sun

We had strange weather last week. Calgary Strange, it was the same for week. Cloudy with some snow every day. In Calgary we're used to rain/snow/sunny in one day, so a whole week of nothing but the same thing is strange. It started to clear Saturday afternoon, but it was still cold Sunday morning for the Xalt Easter Sunrise Gathering. But Sunday was bright, warm with birds singing out doors. What perfect weather the mark Resurrection and new Life!

I know there are some who will say this is what makes Easter truly a Pagan celebration of spring, in fact there was a Pagan on CBC saying exactly that. His argument, Easter was clearly Pagan as it uses the lunar calendar to set it's date. Leaving aside the issue of the Lunar Calendar being Pagan, I see easter as far more than the celebration of a new Spring Season. Yes we celebrate rebirth as do our Pagan brothers, but Easter takes it to a new Context.

The Easter story is more than the general idea of new life after winter, it's celebrating Resurrection after the Political and Religious powers of the day had conspired to protect their own interests and the interests of national security by executing Jesus. They used the power they had to put an end to this Gospel of loving your enemies, embracing tax collectors and prostitutes and up setting religious commerce. They did their worst, and Jesus submitted to their worst. It wasn't enough. God raised Jesus from the dead giving his Gospel a whole new power. His followers no longer feared the authorities, the Gospel could not be stopped.

Spring weather is wonderful and we should celebrate it. New life in the face of the worst evil of religion and politics takes hope to whole other level, and we need to not only to celebrate it, but to join in with it.

Updated: Mike Todd posted this NT Wright Quote:
What neither modernity nor cynical postmodernity can cope with - and hence what they, like the cultural thought police of the first century, stamp on whenever they see it - is the suggestion that the gloom of Good Friday and the lull of Holy Saturday are the prelude to a new kind of life. This sort of life bursts out and challenges all our power systems (in an electronically manipulated democracy, power follows money and the media), and declares once more the shockingly unfashionable truth that Jesus is Lord.

Easter is about the beginning of God’s new world. John’s Gospel stresses that Easter Day is the first day of the new week: not so much the end of the old story as the launch of the new one. The gospel resurrection stories end, not with “well, that’s all right then”, nor with “Jesus is risen, therefore we will rise too”, but with “God’s new world has begun, therefore we’ve got a job to do, and God’s Spirit to help us do it”. That job is to plant the flags of resurrection - new life, new communities, new churches, new faith, new hope, new practical love - in amongst the tired slogans of idolatrous modernity and destructive postmodernity.
- Peace

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