Hall, Art -- Use this one

Publisher Art Hall

Does Easter really matter in today’s world? Haven't really thoughtful people moved past all that? Isn't religion mostly superstition, and without a scientific basis? Man has come to know so much more than what ancient people had available to them. Research has disproven so many of the foundational claims that support religion, that no really intelligent person can hold to those ideas. Man has moved on, and why shouldn't he? Why should a bright person hold to old ideas which limit many of life’s pleasures?

Each person has to walk out life for himself or herself, and answer its questions. As for me, one who is as red-blooded and pleasure-seeking as the rest of the inhabitants of the planet, grappling with these thoughts has been a slow and gradual process. I was raised in a Christian home and taken to church on Sundays, but when challenged by the world’s attractions, my default response left much to disappoint.

But I think that I am like most people, in that I want to know the truth of a matter and feel a vague inner void until I can address it and fill it. Failing to acknowledge a spiritual side of life was not working. This has caused me to consider religion seriously. I have come to find that Christ answers my inner voids. I have also found that,  while there are many religions in the world, Christ is the only one who claims to be God and the only one who came back to life, just as he said he'd do. It is not only that, he promises me eternal life and doesn’t make me achieve perfection to get it. He knows that that is not possible for me, so he paid for all my misdeeds when he voluntarily hung and died on the cross for me and everyone else. He faced the agony, even though he did not want to, and even though he was being mocked as he did so. Even though he had the power to end his torture, he stayed up there. The result is, my sins are forgiven as long as I accept him, and forgive everyone else for what they have done to me. 

I think what's wrong with America today is we believe that we are already good people, we’re ideally considerate of others, our mistakes aren't that bad, and we deserve to go to heaven one day.

But let's examine that for a minute. Are we really good enough on our own? Did you know that in Roman times, they did not have our ideals toward their fellow man; their culture did not teach that. All types of inhumanity were fine with them. Not until Christ entered their world did they reexamine it, and turn to what we believe today, which respects the infinite worth of every human being. 

So, given that Christ taught us that, and it has become the basis of our culture today, then what else did he have to say? Do we trust that we are good enough because we have some goodness? As I said, I have determined that Christ is the true God, and I reason that I can have the best life on earth, and have eternity in Heaven by doing as he says. And what is that? Accept his sacrifice, and forgive others.

That is why I celebrate Easter – the time he died and rose again, and gave me a new life.