Was Easter originally a Pagan Holiday?

The charge is that the word “Easter” derives from the name of a pagan fertility goddess “Eostre.”   It is said that Christians took over a spring festival devoted to this deity.  But this article by British historian Anthony McRoy debunks that claim: Was Easter Borrowed from a Pagan Holiday? | Christian History.

Briefly, the connection to Eostre was made by the Venerable Bede, the medieval church historian, but we can find no other mention of the goddess or any festival associated with her.  Prof. McRoy accounts for what may have been Bede’s misunderstanding with some other etymological accounts of the origin of our word “Easter.”

Besides, English and the other Germanic languages are  the only languages that calls the Festival of the Resurrection “Easter.”  Everyone else calls it some version of “Pascha,” which derives from the Hebrew word for “Passover.”  And the holiday was celebrated extremely early in the church’s history, evidently by the 2nd century.  And its original celebration in the Middle East and around the Mediterranean sea shows no connection at all to any pagan festivals.

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • SKPeterson

    Any objective analysis of the texts, places the Easter holiday in conjunction with the Jewish holiday of Passover. It is not out of the realm of possibility that when Christian missionaries entered Saxon lands that they celebrated Easter at about the same time that a pagan celebration occurred for the goddess Eostre, which likely occurred with enough regularity that people adopted the goddesses celebration as a term for the season in general and then brought that term into common parlance even though the pagan connotations diminished over time. Some of these same Saxons then associated the word Easter with the Passover/Resurrection celebration. So, perhaps the common name did originate with a pagan goddess, but that would be the only connection – it would not be an appropriation of the pagan holiday by Christians.

    Also, this is part and parcel of the same arguments that accompany the Christmas season and the supposed appropriation of pagan holidays in to the Church.

  • SKPeterson

    Any objective analysis of the texts, places the Easter holiday in conjunction with the Jewish holiday of Passover. It is not out of the realm of possibility that when Christian missionaries entered Saxon lands that they celebrated Easter at about the same time that a pagan celebration occurred for the goddess Eostre, which likely occurred with enough regularity that people adopted the goddesses celebration as a term for the season in general and then brought that term into common parlance even though the pagan connotations diminished over time. Some of these same Saxons then associated the word Easter with the Passover/Resurrection celebration. So, perhaps the common name did originate with a pagan goddess, but that would be the only connection – it would not be an appropriation of the pagan holiday by Christians.

    Also, this is part and parcel of the same arguments that accompany the Christmas season and the supposed appropriation of pagan holidays in to the Church.

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  • Bryan Lindemood

    I prefer to call it by its longer name: “The Resurrection of Our Lord”.

  • Bryan Lindemood

    I prefer to call it by its longer name: “The Resurrection of Our Lord”.

  • Booklover

    I couldn’t care less if it was a pagan holiday. Christ has redeemed it. Now it is a day which celebrates a part of true history, as well as New Life.

    The cross used to be two sticks until Christ’s death upon it gave it a different meaning.

  • Booklover

    I couldn’t care less if it was a pagan holiday. Christ has redeemed it. Now it is a day which celebrates a part of true history, as well as New Life.

    The cross used to be two sticks until Christ’s death upon it gave it a different meaning.

  • http://blodskald.wordpress.com/blog Colin

    Fascinating. Even more far-fetched–though I’ve heard it even more from Christians, esp. against the Catholic church–is that “Easter” is derived from the Babylonian fertility goddess Ishtar/Astarte. I’ve heard this before and just heard it on the radio yesterday. One anti-Catholic polemic of the 1800s, “The Two Babylons,” went so far as to identify Ishtar and “Eostre.” How he reconciles this with the nearly-universal use of Pasch and its derivatives outside of Germanic areas, I don’t know. This book is still around…

  • http://blodskald.wordpress.com/blog Colin

    Fascinating. Even more far-fetched–though I’ve heard it even more from Christians, esp. against the Catholic church–is that “Easter” is derived from the Babylonian fertility goddess Ishtar/Astarte. I’ve heard this before and just heard it on the radio yesterday. One anti-Catholic polemic of the 1800s, “The Two Babylons,” went so far as to identify Ishtar and “Eostre.” How he reconciles this with the nearly-universal use of Pasch and its derivatives outside of Germanic areas, I don’t know. This book is still around…

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    File this under: Battles I’m not sure are really worth fighting.

    I mean, sure, I have an interest in knowing about history and we should all strive for accuracy inasmuch as that’s possible. But I don’t see much in McRoy’s article to actually convince me of his thesis — it’s a lot more guesswork than hard facts.

    Consider his argument that “if ‘Easter’ (i.e. the Christian Passover festival) was celebrated prior to” the missions to or conversion of the (Anglo-)Saxons, then it must follow that “any supposed pagan Anglo-Saxon festival of ‘Eostre’ can have no significance.” But this doesn’t actually follow — at least as written. McRoy would have to furthermore prove that the Anglo-Saxons had no influence whatsoever on the Christian culture outside of their territory while they were yet pagans. Maybe that’s easily proven, but I don’t myself know that for sure, nor does McRoy mention it.

    In fact, to the contrary somewhat, he relies on “some evidence of early Germanic borrowing of Latin despite that fact that the Germanic peoples lived outside the Roman Empire” in noting one theory of where the word “Easter” came from.

    But none of that is my point, really. This seems like so much protesting (I thought we Protestants didn’t want to be known for that), a response against modern scholasticism which has foolishly attempted to prove Christianity false by alleging these connections — or derivations, even — with pagan religions.

    And so Christians take the bait and fight back with their own scholarship in an attempt to, what, prove that Christianity never borrowed anything, it’s all completely unique?

    But is that necessary? I mean, my celebration of Resurrection Sunday certainly isn’t going to change one bit if it that day happens to share an etymology or anything else with a pagan celebration. Nor do I really much care as to why we picked December 25 to celebrate Christ’s birth. His birth, death, and resurrection are clearly recorded in Scripture. That’s all I care about.

    The people I run across who care most about whether this or that Christian tradition can in some way be connected with something pagan are the legalists, and I hardly want to share anything in common with them. You have the Jehovah’s Witnesses refusing to celebrate their own births because, I don’t know, some pagans used to do that. Or you have KJV-reading fundamentalists celebrating Easter but refusing to call it that, as if use of that word would cancel out Jesus’ atoning sacrifice and the glory of his resurrection. And on and on.

    But we believe that God uses the things of this world to do his work. Baptisms had precedence before Jesus commanded his disciples use them to bring people to faith. Communion had its precedence in the Passover, of course. That doesn’t reduce communion or baptism, though.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    File this under: Battles I’m not sure are really worth fighting.

    I mean, sure, I have an interest in knowing about history and we should all strive for accuracy inasmuch as that’s possible. But I don’t see much in McRoy’s article to actually convince me of his thesis — it’s a lot more guesswork than hard facts.

    Consider his argument that “if ‘Easter’ (i.e. the Christian Passover festival) was celebrated prior to” the missions to or conversion of the (Anglo-)Saxons, then it must follow that “any supposed pagan Anglo-Saxon festival of ‘Eostre’ can have no significance.” But this doesn’t actually follow — at least as written. McRoy would have to furthermore prove that the Anglo-Saxons had no influence whatsoever on the Christian culture outside of their territory while they were yet pagans. Maybe that’s easily proven, but I don’t myself know that for sure, nor does McRoy mention it.

    In fact, to the contrary somewhat, he relies on “some evidence of early Germanic borrowing of Latin despite that fact that the Germanic peoples lived outside the Roman Empire” in noting one theory of where the word “Easter” came from.

    But none of that is my point, really. This seems like so much protesting (I thought we Protestants didn’t want to be known for that), a response against modern scholasticism which has foolishly attempted to prove Christianity false by alleging these connections — or derivations, even — with pagan religions.

    And so Christians take the bait and fight back with their own scholarship in an attempt to, what, prove that Christianity never borrowed anything, it’s all completely unique?

    But is that necessary? I mean, my celebration of Resurrection Sunday certainly isn’t going to change one bit if it that day happens to share an etymology or anything else with a pagan celebration. Nor do I really much care as to why we picked December 25 to celebrate Christ’s birth. His birth, death, and resurrection are clearly recorded in Scripture. That’s all I care about.

    The people I run across who care most about whether this or that Christian tradition can in some way be connected with something pagan are the legalists, and I hardly want to share anything in common with them. You have the Jehovah’s Witnesses refusing to celebrate their own births because, I don’t know, some pagans used to do that. Or you have KJV-reading fundamentalists celebrating Easter but refusing to call it that, as if use of that word would cancel out Jesus’ atoning sacrifice and the glory of his resurrection. And on and on.

    But we believe that God uses the things of this world to do his work. Baptisms had precedence before Jesus commanded his disciples use them to bring people to faith. Communion had its precedence in the Passover, of course. That doesn’t reduce communion or baptism, though.

  • Renee Cook

    Just a small tidbit… Our Christian brothers and sisters in the Southern Hemisphere are celebrating our Lord’s resurrection in the autumn season as they enter the winter months of May, June, and July. Spring and fertility associated with Easter is maybe an imperial attitude of Northern Hemisphere residents. How does geography fit into theological speculations?

  • Renee Cook

    Just a small tidbit… Our Christian brothers and sisters in the Southern Hemisphere are celebrating our Lord’s resurrection in the autumn season as they enter the winter months of May, June, and July. Spring and fertility associated with Easter is maybe an imperial attitude of Northern Hemisphere residents. How does geography fit into theological speculations?

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  • Jonathan

    Easter was not originally a pagan holiday. It has to do with the theology of Sunday: Sunday was the first Christian feast, a weekly celebration of the entire Paschal mystery of Christ’s death and resurrection, for it was on Sunday that Christ rose from the dead. Easter came about towards the end of the first century as some Christians began to celebrate a yearly remembrance of Christ’s death and resurrection on 14 Nisan, the day on which Christ was crucified (these were the so-called “Quartodecimans”). Controversy erupted: should Christians celebrate this yearly feast on whatever date in the calendar corresponded to 14 Nisan (making it possible for Easter to be celebrated on any day of the week, like Christmas), or should it always be celebrated on Sunday, the day Christ rose from the dead? The latter group had won out by the third or fourth century. The institution of the yearly feast had nothing to do with pagan festivals and everything to do with the date on which Christ died (cf. the question of the date of Christmas corresponding to the pagan feast of Sol Invictus, the birthday of the unconquerable sun, a similar situation). At any rate, the original theology of Sunday as a celebration of the entirety of the Paschal mystery underscores a number of things, not the least of which is the importance of weekly communion.

  • Jonathan

    Easter was not originally a pagan holiday. It has to do with the theology of Sunday: Sunday was the first Christian feast, a weekly celebration of the entire Paschal mystery of Christ’s death and resurrection, for it was on Sunday that Christ rose from the dead. Easter came about towards the end of the first century as some Christians began to celebrate a yearly remembrance of Christ’s death and resurrection on 14 Nisan, the day on which Christ was crucified (these were the so-called “Quartodecimans”). Controversy erupted: should Christians celebrate this yearly feast on whatever date in the calendar corresponded to 14 Nisan (making it possible for Easter to be celebrated on any day of the week, like Christmas), or should it always be celebrated on Sunday, the day Christ rose from the dead? The latter group had won out by the third or fourth century. The institution of the yearly feast had nothing to do with pagan festivals and everything to do with the date on which Christ died (cf. the question of the date of Christmas corresponding to the pagan feast of Sol Invictus, the birthday of the unconquerable sun, a similar situation). At any rate, the original theology of Sunday as a celebration of the entirety of the Paschal mystery underscores a number of things, not the least of which is the importance of weekly communion.

  • http://blodskald.wordpress.com/blog Colin

    To #6, Benedict XVI addressed this well in Spirit of the Liturgy, methinks. God has revealed Himself redemptively (and hence theologically) primarily in history, and not in speculation. It is by these concrete historical realities that we understand all the doctrines, and history is prime also in how we order our worship. Those in the Southern Hemisphere who celebrate Easter in April, regardless of the local season, are therefore correct.

  • http://blodskald.wordpress.com/blog Colin

    To #6, Benedict XVI addressed this well in Spirit of the Liturgy, methinks. God has revealed Himself redemptively (and hence theologically) primarily in history, and not in speculation. It is by these concrete historical realities that we understand all the doctrines, and history is prime also in how we order our worship. Those in the Southern Hemisphere who celebrate Easter in April, regardless of the local season, are therefore correct.

  • Randiee

    If i am a business man, then i better know money.

    If I am a politician then I better know politics.

    If I am a chef…..I better KNOW cooking.

    If we are going to go to the point of saying we are a Christian—we BETTER know the teaching of CHRISTianity.

    1. Jesus said he was not part of the world
    John 18:36

    2. Friendship with the world is enemity with God
    James 4:4

    3. DON’T yoke ourselves with UNBELIEVERS
    2 Cor 6:14

    4. Must NEVER learn the pagan ways of the nations around us.
    Deut. 18:9,12
    Deut. 12:3o

    The Encyclpoedia Britannica says: “There is no idication of the observance of the Easter festival in the New Testament OR in the writings of the apostolic Fathers. The sanctity of special times was an idea absent from the minds of the first Christians.” Vol VIII pg. 828

    The Catholic Enclyclopedia tells us: “A great many pagan customs, celebrating the return of spring, gravitated to Easter. The egg is the emblem of the germinating life of early spring…The rabbit is a pagan symbol and has ALWAYS been an emblem not of Jesus but of fertility. Vol V. pg. 227

    Need we say more??????? No

  • Randiee

    If i am a business man, then i better know money.

    If I am a politician then I better know politics.

    If I am a chef…..I better KNOW cooking.

    If we are going to go to the point of saying we are a Christian—we BETTER know the teaching of CHRISTianity.

    1. Jesus said he was not part of the world
    John 18:36

    2. Friendship with the world is enemity with God
    James 4:4

    3. DON’T yoke ourselves with UNBELIEVERS
    2 Cor 6:14

    4. Must NEVER learn the pagan ways of the nations around us.
    Deut. 18:9,12
    Deut. 12:3o

    The Encyclpoedia Britannica says: “There is no idication of the observance of the Easter festival in the New Testament OR in the writings of the apostolic Fathers. The sanctity of special times was an idea absent from the minds of the first Christians.” Vol VIII pg. 828

    The Catholic Enclyclopedia tells us: “A great many pagan customs, celebrating the return of spring, gravitated to Easter. The egg is the emblem of the germinating life of early spring…The rabbit is a pagan symbol and has ALWAYS been an emblem not of Jesus but of fertility. Vol V. pg. 227

    Need we say more??????? No

  • Cincinnatus

    Randiee’s post is loltastic.

  • Cincinnatus

    Randiee’s post is loltastic.

  • Booklover

    Randiee, if you don’t celebrate the day on which the Lord broke the bonds of death, and if you treat it as if it is any other ordinary day, I think the devil might be rather happy.

    And don’t let us catch you riding on a jet plane, because the early Christians didn’t do that, but the pagans do.

  • Booklover

    Randiee, if you don’t celebrate the day on which the Lord broke the bonds of death, and if you treat it as if it is any other ordinary day, I think the devil might be rather happy.

    And don’t let us catch you riding on a jet plane, because the early Christians didn’t do that, but the pagans do.

  • Phil

    I’m not shocked but saddened that Randiee is the only one who’s on the right track. Were are truly Laodecia, dumbed down and sleeping. It doesn’t matter what the modern scholars say. It doesn’t matter what we think or choose to believe. The only thing that matters is what God says! Otherwise we are not Christian, but Catholic and honor tradition above a plain “thus saith the Lord” whenever there is conflict. He calls these things ABOMINATIONS, and anyone doing these will be cut off. 40 days of weeping for Tammuz killed by the boar became Lent, (Ez. 8=16.) The tradition of eating ham on Easter comes from this ancient reenactment of the pagan rituals. Baking cakes with a T on them became hot-crossed buns, (Jer. 44=18.) Saying prayers and crossing your chest with a T became the sign of the cross. The goddess coming down into the Euphrates river in an egg and being rolled up the bank and rabbits for fecundity are also pagan, and became egg-rolling and egg hunts. Originally the babies born to temple prostitutes of Astarte, who became pregnant by sexual rituals at Easter, were sacrificed at Christmas and eggs were dipped in their blood and then eaten to gain the power of the god. They dipped their caps in the blood also and Mithra wears this cap, and it was borrowed for Santa Claus. There is still one denomination who only has red eggs. Sun worship became Sunday, changed by the pagan roman Constantine and the Catholic church at the council of Laodicea in 325 A.D, (Ez. 8=16,17.) Their authority was the fact that they changed Passover to Easter several years earlier as referenced in the original words of the decree which we still have. After her husband Nimrod died Semiramus became pregnant, she said, by the rays of the sun which became obelisks and Ashereah poles and church steeples. God said that the obelisks of On/Heliopolis would be thrown down but we took them out of Egypt and put them up in front of the Vatican, among other places, Jer. 43=13.) Tammuz, (Satan’s counterfeit immaculate conception,) was born on Dec. 25. Tammuz was reworked into Mithra, worshiped by Constantine as the Invincible Sun, also born on Dec. 25th . When Babylon was conquered by the Medo-Persians the priests moved to Rome. Their high priest the Pontifex Maximus wore the fish hat and cape of Dagon, which became the hat and tails of the popes hat. In order to gain the power of their god, the worshipers of Dagon ate fish on one day – guess which? This is why Catholics eat fish on Fridays, it was borrowed also. God specifically tells us not to put up Christmas trees borrowed from the same Semiramus and Tammuz, (Jer. 10=1-5.) All the ancient Gods were borrowed from one culture to another. Semiramus, the Queen of Heaven, became Asherah, Astarte, Isis, Oestre, and yes many traditions were transferred to Mary.
    Do not believe the modern apologizers, but go to any encyclepedia.Other books besides Hyslop’s The Two Babylons which has pages and pages of references so that it is a good 400 pages long are The Golden Bow, Too Long In The Sun, Babylon, Mystery Religion, and Fossilized Customs.

  • Phil

    I’m not shocked but saddened that Randiee is the only one who’s on the right track. Were are truly Laodecia, dumbed down and sleeping. It doesn’t matter what the modern scholars say. It doesn’t matter what we think or choose to believe. The only thing that matters is what God says! Otherwise we are not Christian, but Catholic and honor tradition above a plain “thus saith the Lord” whenever there is conflict. He calls these things ABOMINATIONS, and anyone doing these will be cut off. 40 days of weeping for Tammuz killed by the boar became Lent, (Ez. 8=16.) The tradition of eating ham on Easter comes from this ancient reenactment of the pagan rituals. Baking cakes with a T on them became hot-crossed buns, (Jer. 44=18.) Saying prayers and crossing your chest with a T became the sign of the cross. The goddess coming down into the Euphrates river in an egg and being rolled up the bank and rabbits for fecundity are also pagan, and became egg-rolling and egg hunts. Originally the babies born to temple prostitutes of Astarte, who became pregnant by sexual rituals at Easter, were sacrificed at Christmas and eggs were dipped in their blood and then eaten to gain the power of the god. They dipped their caps in the blood also and Mithra wears this cap, and it was borrowed for Santa Claus. There is still one denomination who only has red eggs. Sun worship became Sunday, changed by the pagan roman Constantine and the Catholic church at the council of Laodicea in 325 A.D, (Ez. 8=16,17.) Their authority was the fact that they changed Passover to Easter several years earlier as referenced in the original words of the decree which we still have. After her husband Nimrod died Semiramus became pregnant, she said, by the rays of the sun which became obelisks and Ashereah poles and church steeples. God said that the obelisks of On/Heliopolis would be thrown down but we took them out of Egypt and put them up in front of the Vatican, among other places, Jer. 43=13.) Tammuz, (Satan’s counterfeit immaculate conception,) was born on Dec. 25. Tammuz was reworked into Mithra, worshiped by Constantine as the Invincible Sun, also born on Dec. 25th . When Babylon was conquered by the Medo-Persians the priests moved to Rome. Their high priest the Pontifex Maximus wore the fish hat and cape of Dagon, which became the hat and tails of the popes hat. In order to gain the power of their god, the worshipers of Dagon ate fish on one day – guess which? This is why Catholics eat fish on Fridays, it was borrowed also. God specifically tells us not to put up Christmas trees borrowed from the same Semiramus and Tammuz, (Jer. 10=1-5.) All the ancient Gods were borrowed from one culture to another. Semiramus, the Queen of Heaven, became Asherah, Astarte, Isis, Oestre, and yes many traditions were transferred to Mary.
    Do not believe the modern apologizers, but go to any encyclepedia.Other books besides Hyslop’s The Two Babylons which has pages and pages of references so that it is a good 400 pages long are The Golden Bow, Too Long In The Sun, Babylon, Mystery Religion, and Fossilized Customs.

  • http://theobservationtree.blogspot.com Louis

    Randy, Phil, stop reading Jack Chick’s crap. Yes, crap. It is nonsense, heresy and carp. Oh, before I forget, it is crap. It is blasphemous, uninformed, and crap.

  • http://theobservationtree.blogspot.com Louis

    Randy, Phil, stop reading Jack Chick’s crap. Yes, crap. It is nonsense, heresy and carp. Oh, before I forget, it is crap. It is blasphemous, uninformed, and crap.

  • http://lastdanceofthejackalope.blogspot.com JD Loofbourrow

    I’m not in to eggs and bunnies so much but I though the term Easter was an English form of an old Germanic root word meaning “to rise.” I thought it was a reference to the sun rise, the same word we get the word east from. I understood that the intended the use of the word was to refer specifically to the resurrection and ascension of Christ.

    I think the thing I have a hard time with is that, at the end of Easter, I always feel like I haven’t really celebrated the resurrection sufficiently. Christmas and Thanksgiving are so easy (for me) to celebrate because they are so festive. I just wish I could develop some more festive traditions for my family for Easter.

  • http://lastdanceofthejackalope.blogspot.com JD Loofbourrow

    I’m not in to eggs and bunnies so much but I though the term Easter was an English form of an old Germanic root word meaning “to rise.” I thought it was a reference to the sun rise, the same word we get the word east from. I understood that the intended the use of the word was to refer specifically to the resurrection and ascension of Christ.

    I think the thing I have a hard time with is that, at the end of Easter, I always feel like I haven’t really celebrated the resurrection sufficiently. Christmas and Thanksgiving are so easy (for me) to celebrate because they are so festive. I just wish I could develop some more festive traditions for my family for Easter.

  • http://blodskald.wordpress.com/blog Colin

    Phil, “The Two Babylons” was pretty well refuted quite some time ago. That is the book to which I referred, and which was on a readily-available bookshelf when I was growing up. The poor scholarship and logical fallacies weren’t hard to pick up even when I was 14. Be careful of your sources…

  • http://blodskald.wordpress.com/blog Colin

    Phil, “The Two Babylons” was pretty well refuted quite some time ago. That is the book to which I referred, and which was on a readily-available bookshelf when I was growing up. The poor scholarship and logical fallacies weren’t hard to pick up even when I was 14. Be careful of your sources…

  • Bob

    Heard about this article. G.E. was the Venerable Veith for me before seeing this, but the shallowness of this is very disappointing. There is a clear traceable historical path. Perhaps easier for someone who has studied the combination of German history, ancient history and Bible history. German (gari-man) tribes migrated from Anatolia to Scandinavia. Before Christ came or the Catholic Church existed, these relocated tribes celebrated Ostara, goddess of spring whose symbols are the rabbit and the egg. In Anatolia, their forefathers celebrated Ishtar (Astarte) who supposedly turned a bird into a rabbit that laid eggs in Spring. Some cultures called her Ashtoreth. Some say that she turned herself into a bird, then a rabbit to escape another god. Really, if anyone has to be careful of his sources, it is the people not wanting to find this. God wants us to celebrate and to celebrate the right thing. 2 Kings:1-23. Ezekiel 8:14-17

  • Bob

    Heard about this article. G.E. was the Venerable Veith for me before seeing this, but the shallowness of this is very disappointing. There is a clear traceable historical path. Perhaps easier for someone who has studied the combination of German history, ancient history and Bible history. German (gari-man) tribes migrated from Anatolia to Scandinavia. Before Christ came or the Catholic Church existed, these relocated tribes celebrated Ostara, goddess of spring whose symbols are the rabbit and the egg. In Anatolia, their forefathers celebrated Ishtar (Astarte) who supposedly turned a bird into a rabbit that laid eggs in Spring. Some cultures called her Ashtoreth. Some say that she turned herself into a bird, then a rabbit to escape another god. Really, if anyone has to be careful of his sources, it is the people not wanting to find this. God wants us to celebrate and to celebrate the right thing. 2 Kings:1-23. Ezekiel 8:14-17

  • http://blodskald.wordpress.com/blog Colin

    Mr. Bob,
    I have done a fair bit of study on German (where do you get gari-man?) history, ancient history, and Bible history. Snorri Sturluson made the Anatolia/Land of the Turks connection in the Heimskringla. There is little debate that the Indo-Europeans came from this area of the world (it is after all, the cradle of civilization).
    Would you mind citing your source? I would be interested in looking it up, but so far I’ve only been able to dig up sources that already have an axe to grind against the celebration of Easter/Eostre/Ishtar/Ostara…and they can’t even agree on what the Anglo-Saxons called her. As an example of one of the many scholarly red flags on “Two Babylons”: he goes straight from accusing us of taking it from “Eostre”-a Germanic festival-to “Beltane”-a Celtic festival. (Another example that tickled my funny bone: he asserts that the sign of the cross was taken from the Alexandrine Jews’ use of the “tau,” derived from Platonic philosophy…perhaps it was, but what about the very obvious point that Christ died on a cross? See posts 1 and 2).
    In any case, this is an old post, but if you would post where you got your information, I’d appreciate it. It would be nice if it is one dealing simply and in a scholarly fashion with the Germans’ derivation of their festivals from their Anatolian ancestors, and not one already set on proving the pagan ancestry of Easter. Those are the only sources who seem to be proving it so far.

  • http://blodskald.wordpress.com/blog Colin

    Mr. Bob,
    I have done a fair bit of study on German (where do you get gari-man?) history, ancient history, and Bible history. Snorri Sturluson made the Anatolia/Land of the Turks connection in the Heimskringla. There is little debate that the Indo-Europeans came from this area of the world (it is after all, the cradle of civilization).
    Would you mind citing your source? I would be interested in looking it up, but so far I’ve only been able to dig up sources that already have an axe to grind against the celebration of Easter/Eostre/Ishtar/Ostara…and they can’t even agree on what the Anglo-Saxons called her. As an example of one of the many scholarly red flags on “Two Babylons”: he goes straight from accusing us of taking it from “Eostre”-a Germanic festival-to “Beltane”-a Celtic festival. (Another example that tickled my funny bone: he asserts that the sign of the cross was taken from the Alexandrine Jews’ use of the “tau,” derived from Platonic philosophy…perhaps it was, but what about the very obvious point that Christ died on a cross? See posts 1 and 2).
    In any case, this is an old post, but if you would post where you got your information, I’d appreciate it. It would be nice if it is one dealing simply and in a scholarly fashion with the Germans’ derivation of their festivals from their Anatolian ancestors, and not one already set on proving the pagan ancestry of Easter. Those are the only sources who seem to be proving it so far.

  • Bob

    Colin,
    all for the scholarly approach. I would like to take it one step at a time, so as to know which research to provide. If we are in agreement on a point, like the Germanic migration from Anatolia to Scandinavia, then no need to burden the dialogue with the supporting research. For me, the relevant starting point is roughly 2000 B.C. How are you with Nimrod, Semiramis and Tammuz. Very interesting is the non-biblical support of the existence of Nimrod (Ninus) and Semiramis in German Gründungssage / Gründungslegende regarding Treverer (Trebata), the founder of Trier around 2000 B.C. There are many references concerning the content of Gesta Treverorum. The following from http://www.uni-protokolle.de/Lexikon/Trebeta.html: Trebeta war der Sohn von Assyrerkönig Ninus und einer Chaldäerkönigin. Seine Stiefmutter wurde später Königin Semiramis . Diese vertrieb ihren Stiefsohn Trebeta aus ihrem Reich. Trebeta floh mit Gefolgsleuten nach Europa und soll nach der Sage um 2000 v. Chr. an der Mosel den Ort Trier gegründet haben.

  • Bob

    Colin,
    all for the scholarly approach. I would like to take it one step at a time, so as to know which research to provide. If we are in agreement on a point, like the Germanic migration from Anatolia to Scandinavia, then no need to burden the dialogue with the supporting research. For me, the relevant starting point is roughly 2000 B.C. How are you with Nimrod, Semiramis and Tammuz. Very interesting is the non-biblical support of the existence of Nimrod (Ninus) and Semiramis in German Gründungssage / Gründungslegende regarding Treverer (Trebata), the founder of Trier around 2000 B.C. There are many references concerning the content of Gesta Treverorum. The following from http://www.uni-protokolle.de/Lexikon/Trebeta.html: Trebeta war der Sohn von Assyrerkönig Ninus und einer Chaldäerkönigin. Seine Stiefmutter wurde später Königin Semiramis . Diese vertrieb ihren Stiefsohn Trebeta aus ihrem Reich. Trebeta floh mit Gefolgsleuten nach Europa und soll nach der Sage um 2000 v. Chr. an der Mosel den Ort Trier gegründet haben.

  • http://blodskald.wordpress.com/blog Colin

    I’m sorry, but an ad for a World of Warcraft-esque game being the first thing to pop up on that website renders its credibility….well, suspect. It was funny, though.
    Anyway, the things I’m interested in reading about:

    1) The derivation of Eostre from Ishtar (again, from a source concerned with the history of the Germans, not proving the paganism of Easter). Given that it is questionable whether this even referred to a goddess (it is generally agreed that the name is derived from the same word as “east/rising,” like Latin “orient/oriens.” See a parallel construction in the modern “westering.”)

    2) The tales about Ishtar, the rabbit, the egg. Similar tales for Eostre, if any. These are practically required to establish the connection between the two.

    3) Simply a matter of burning curiosity, but where do you get “Gari-man”?

    By sources, I mean books or reputable websites, preferably associated with a university. I am interested in this “clear traceable historical path.”

    Thanks much.

  • http://blodskald.wordpress.com/blog Colin

    I’m sorry, but an ad for a World of Warcraft-esque game being the first thing to pop up on that website renders its credibility….well, suspect. It was funny, though.
    Anyway, the things I’m interested in reading about:

    1) The derivation of Eostre from Ishtar (again, from a source concerned with the history of the Germans, not proving the paganism of Easter). Given that it is questionable whether this even referred to a goddess (it is generally agreed that the name is derived from the same word as “east/rising,” like Latin “orient/oriens.” See a parallel construction in the modern “westering.”)

    2) The tales about Ishtar, the rabbit, the egg. Similar tales for Eostre, if any. These are practically required to establish the connection between the two.

    3) Simply a matter of burning curiosity, but where do you get “Gari-man”?

    By sources, I mean books or reputable websites, preferably associated with a university. I am interested in this “clear traceable historical path.”

    Thanks much.

  • Bob

    Colin,
    You did say “scholarly”. The pop-up ads on a site are a less scholarly approach to its content than its content. The pop-ups I saw had to do with financial credit and guitar amps. More importantly, the draw downs on the page show that it is a University oriented site. Look under, e.g. Nachrichten. There is no interest on my part to take the time to have a serious conversation with someone who writes this “I’m sorry, but an ad for a World of Warcraft-esque game being the first thing to pop up on that website renders its credibility….well, suspect. It was funny, though.” to create a false impression about an entire website.

  • Bob

    Colin,
    You did say “scholarly”. The pop-up ads on a site are a less scholarly approach to its content than its content. The pop-ups I saw had to do with financial credit and guitar amps. More importantly, the draw downs on the page show that it is a University oriented site. Look under, e.g. Nachrichten. There is no interest on my part to take the time to have a serious conversation with someone who writes this “I’m sorry, but an ad for a World of Warcraft-esque game being the first thing to pop up on that website renders its credibility….well, suspect. It was funny, though.” to create a false impression about an entire website.

  • http://blodskald.wordpress.com/blog Colin

    Mr. Bob,
    I was not discarding it for that reason. I was genuinely amused: that is not something one expects to see on a scholarly site, as university websites generally have the money to support their own domains. I apologize if my mirth was excessive or misdirected.
    I looked under “News”…there is news for universities and from institutes, and an ad for Schoolfriends, but no connection with any university that I can see. This seems more a news portal/Wikipedia concept.
    More to the point, and hence my clarification, the article didn’t answer any of my questions. Please see post 19 if you’d like to address those.
    I think that we both have better things to do. I might suggest that you reconsider your disappointment in Dr. Veith, with whose scholarship I am pretty well acquainted.
    Peace.

  • http://blodskald.wordpress.com/blog Colin

    Mr. Bob,
    I was not discarding it for that reason. I was genuinely amused: that is not something one expects to see on a scholarly site, as university websites generally have the money to support their own domains. I apologize if my mirth was excessive or misdirected.
    I looked under “News”…there is news for universities and from institutes, and an ad for Schoolfriends, but no connection with any university that I can see. This seems more a news portal/Wikipedia concept.
    More to the point, and hence my clarification, the article didn’t answer any of my questions. Please see post 19 if you’d like to address those.
    I think that we both have better things to do. I might suggest that you reconsider your disappointment in Dr. Veith, with whose scholarship I am pretty well acquainted.
    Peace.

  • Bob

    Colin,
    olive branch accepted.
    Not many years ago, I was making arguments for Easter, attaching Christian symbolism to the sun rising and the egg.
    I’ve had a handful of face to face discussions with G.E.V., one of which was the topic of whether all truth finds basis in the truth of God’s Word. In those discussions we had similar point of views. His passion for life and truth is admirable.
    There is a reason why Bede was given the title of Venerable. He was known for his meticulous research. What Bede wrote about Eostre appears to be observation without intent or agenda. But this topic doesn’t rest with Bede or the Saxons.
    Regarding the etymology for Ost/est, they are the Germanic roots for what we call east and used for the direction the sun rises. West/vest are the Germanic roots for what we call west and used for the direction the sun rises. Both roots were derived to describe a major daily event of the sun and both have “est” in them.
    Regarding the etymology of Geri/gari, they were present in Teutonic meaning spear. Gari-manu in sanskrit means spear man (Manu translates to man and Adam).
    The relevant Germanic migration, along with their religion and customs preceeds the formation of the Greek language. Roughly 1,000 years before that migration, i.e. ca. 2,000 B.C., non-christian, non-religious sources, e.g. the city of Trier itself, believe that the stepson of Semiramis left Anatolia. Roughly 500 years after the relevant Germanic migration, Ezekiel wrote about women sitting at the north gate of the temple of the LORD, mourning for Tammuz, the son of Semiramis (who had been dead for 1,500 years). The Germanic people who migrated to Scandinavia, from whom the Norse and the Goths are descended are the relevant people group. Though there is much inactive debate over their origin (one extreme claims they go all the way back to 5000 B.C. in India, the other that they suddenly appear in 1000 B.C. in Scandinavia without any prior trace), there seems to be no debate that in the year 1000 B.C., there were Germanic people in Scandinavia.
    When I have time, I will get back to you regarding Ishtar / Ostara, birds, bunnies & eggs.
    Regards,
    Bob

  • Bob

    Colin,
    olive branch accepted.
    Not many years ago, I was making arguments for Easter, attaching Christian symbolism to the sun rising and the egg.
    I’ve had a handful of face to face discussions with G.E.V., one of which was the topic of whether all truth finds basis in the truth of God’s Word. In those discussions we had similar point of views. His passion for life and truth is admirable.
    There is a reason why Bede was given the title of Venerable. He was known for his meticulous research. What Bede wrote about Eostre appears to be observation without intent or agenda. But this topic doesn’t rest with Bede or the Saxons.
    Regarding the etymology for Ost/est, they are the Germanic roots for what we call east and used for the direction the sun rises. West/vest are the Germanic roots for what we call west and used for the direction the sun rises. Both roots were derived to describe a major daily event of the sun and both have “est” in them.
    Regarding the etymology of Geri/gari, they were present in Teutonic meaning spear. Gari-manu in sanskrit means spear man (Manu translates to man and Adam).
    The relevant Germanic migration, along with their religion and customs preceeds the formation of the Greek language. Roughly 1,000 years before that migration, i.e. ca. 2,000 B.C., non-christian, non-religious sources, e.g. the city of Trier itself, believe that the stepson of Semiramis left Anatolia. Roughly 500 years after the relevant Germanic migration, Ezekiel wrote about women sitting at the north gate of the temple of the LORD, mourning for Tammuz, the son of Semiramis (who had been dead for 1,500 years). The Germanic people who migrated to Scandinavia, from whom the Norse and the Goths are descended are the relevant people group. Though there is much inactive debate over their origin (one extreme claims they go all the way back to 5000 B.C. in India, the other that they suddenly appear in 1000 B.C. in Scandinavia without any prior trace), there seems to be no debate that in the year 1000 B.C., there were Germanic people in Scandinavia.
    When I have time, I will get back to you regarding Ishtar / Ostara, birds, bunnies & eggs.
    Regards,
    Bob

  • Tim

    I find it interesting that you take the cross as a given considering the early form used by Christians was an X, all you have to do is look at the catacombs to see that.

  • Tim

    I find it interesting that you take the cross as a given considering the early form used by Christians was an X, all you have to do is look at the catacombs to see that.

  • Bob

    It has been over a month, but I am married, have children, and have a daytime job, teaching responsibilities… In taking a step back, I think seeing is believing. With regard to birds, bunnies & eggs there is lots of data on the web about the mythology surrounding Ester/Astarte/Ishtar/Isis/Ostara and a bird story. In one version, all Phoenixes are struck down by another god and our subject goddess turns them into bunnies that lay eggs. In another version, our subject goddess is being chased by another god, she turns herself into a bird, he turns himself into a bird, she flies in a bunny hole and turns herself into a bunny and that bunny lays eggs. Historically, the Norse mythology is younger than the middle-eastern mythologies and Scandinavia is pretty far from Anatolia. In their mythology, Ostara arrives late for Spring one year and finds a bird that has wings no longer capable of flight due to damage suffered from going out before Spring arrives. Ostara takes pity and turns the bird into a bunny and that bunny lays eggs. Especially, in light of the migrational link from Anatolia to Scandinavia, the commonality in this particular myth is more than interesting. Have a look for yourselves. I do appreciate the spirited discussion. God bless all of you.

  • Bob

    It has been over a month, but I am married, have children, and have a daytime job, teaching responsibilities… In taking a step back, I think seeing is believing. With regard to birds, bunnies & eggs there is lots of data on the web about the mythology surrounding Ester/Astarte/Ishtar/Isis/Ostara and a bird story. In one version, all Phoenixes are struck down by another god and our subject goddess turns them into bunnies that lay eggs. In another version, our subject goddess is being chased by another god, she turns herself into a bird, he turns himself into a bird, she flies in a bunny hole and turns herself into a bunny and that bunny lays eggs. Historically, the Norse mythology is younger than the middle-eastern mythologies and Scandinavia is pretty far from Anatolia. In their mythology, Ostara arrives late for Spring one year and finds a bird that has wings no longer capable of flight due to damage suffered from going out before Spring arrives. Ostara takes pity and turns the bird into a bunny and that bunny lays eggs. Especially, in light of the migrational link from Anatolia to Scandinavia, the commonality in this particular myth is more than interesting. Have a look for yourselves. I do appreciate the spirited discussion. God bless all of you.

  • APL

    IF easter is to be a celebration of the resurrection and Passover, then why is it not celebrated at the time of Passover? Great pains have been taken to assure that easter is never celebrated on the correct day of Passover. In fact, since the crucifixion and resurrection was associated with Passover, then the DAY that it is celebrated should vary from year to year. Yet, easter is always celebrated on SUNday. This fact along tell me, that easter is pagan.

  • APL

    IF easter is to be a celebration of the resurrection and Passover, then why is it not celebrated at the time of Passover? Great pains have been taken to assure that easter is never celebrated on the correct day of Passover. In fact, since the crucifixion and resurrection was associated with Passover, then the DAY that it is celebrated should vary from year to year. Yet, easter is always celebrated on SUNday. This fact along tell me, that easter is pagan.

  • jill

    It’s interesting to note that when Jews accept the Messiah as their savior and not just a prophet, they often refuse to join the Christian Church because it is pagan.

  • jill

    It’s interesting to note that when Jews accept the Messiah as their savior and not just a prophet, they often refuse to join the Christian Church because it is pagan.

  • Blove

    Phil and Randiee its good to see that you got it right, But you shouldn’t be amazed at the reaction from these so-called christian ! The Bible speaks about people exactly like this ! They want their pagan festivals and holidays . They’re not about to change something they love for Jesus, they would rather defend it and say your crazy ,and are being to technical . Once they’ve be shown ,there is no excuse ! So they condemn themselves ! Let live and let live .Jesus will do the judging.

  • Blove

    Phil and Randiee its good to see that you got it right, But you shouldn’t be amazed at the reaction from these so-called christian ! The Bible speaks about people exactly like this ! They want their pagan festivals and holidays . They’re not about to change something they love for Jesus, they would rather defend it and say your crazy ,and are being to technical . Once they’ve be shown ,there is no excuse ! So they condemn themselves ! Let live and let live .Jesus will do the judging.

  • Carrie

    One trouble with the article is that it comes at the question purely from a European, A.D. (or C.E.) viewpoint. It neglects to make any acknowledgement of the fact that there had been in existence a fertility goddess for over 3,000 years by the time he picks up his history of the Germans and their Eostre goddess in Europe. The original goddess was widely known throughout the Mesopotamian region as Ishtar, Ashtoreth, Astarte; and then accepted as a Greek and Roman goddess under the names Aphrodite and Venus.

    The author doesn’t seem to understand that the Bible wasn’t written in the context of Dark Ages Europe. The Bible’s context is Mesopotamian and Middle Eastern, and it began to be written thousands of years before Christianity was a widespread religion. So, trying to understand whether the current Church celebration of “Easter” has any pagan roots for its name and practices without acknowledging this long, Biblically relevant and intertwined history shows poor scholarship at best; or at worst that he’s being intentionally misleading and sharing only what supports his personal view about the subject.

    To truly understand the question, it’s necessary to understand the origins of this fertility goddess. The Bible says that Abraham came out of Ur of the Chaldees, and was told to turn his back on all their false gods and goddesses (of which Ishtar was literally Queen). And, from there the story of Israel as God’s chosen people begins. I question whether the author neglects to go to this aspect of Bible history because it is rooted in the Hebrew Old Testament, and refers to Israel becoming God’s chosen people, seeing as he is a lecturer in Islamic Studies himself, and may not want to acknowledge any Jewish history and claim to the Land promised to Abraham, Isaac (not Ishmael) and Jacob.

    But, that is the history. The Israelites were commanded to destroy the idol-worshipping nations around them, and never to worship their false gods, and never to intermarry with these pagan nations. And, anyone familiar with the Old Testament knows that the entire rest of the Old Testament from Genesis to Malachi (though it’s not chronologically laid out) is all about the Israelite’s constant relapse into idol worship, and God’s insistence that they stop it and repent, and return to Him. One of the gods they were most guilty of worshipping was Astarte, Ishtar, Ashtoreth. King Solomon is told his sons will lose the Kingdom because of his own devotion to Ashtoreth, among other gods. (Again, it’s all in the Bible).

    Come into the Greek New Testament. And, watch the struggles that all the Apostles have to separate the followers of Christ from worshipping false gods.

    And, then after these few thousand years of religious history, start talking about the struggle of the God of the Bible against the gods of the pagan nations where His word was being spread, ie. Europe.

    It’s not a hard exercise to stop, compare and consider: Passover, a Jewish remembrance (commanded in the Law) of the time God saved the Israelites from slavery in Egypt involved sacrificing and roasting a lamb with bitter herbs; and telling the history of the feast to their questioning children. Then, Christ came as the Son of God and was crucified at the time of Passover. The intricate symbology of the first Passover, with the unspotted lamb sacrificed to put its blood as a covering on the household, to protect all those within from God’s judgement, became real in Christ’s death on the cross to provide a blood sacrifice for true salvation (from the bondage to sin, not Egypt) for all those who choose to come under his name and have their sins forgiven.

    And, then ask how on earth eggs, rabbits, baby chicks, flowers and any of the other current “Easter” celebrations have anything to do with either the original Passover or with Christ’s sacrifice. The answer is obvious and simple. They have nothing to do with anything in the Bible, except as far as they relate to the worship of Ishtar/Astarte/Ashtoreth, the goddess of love, beauty, sexuality and fertility. The eggs, the baby chicks, the flowers and prolific rabbits are all symbols of new birth, fertility and of Spring. The Church, and many modern-day Christians, are happy to lump Christ’s entire purpose on earth with this pagan celebration, because he died and was resurrected. New life! At the time of Spring (in the Northern Hemisphere). How juvenile and simplistic.

    Knowing God’s total and fervent abhorrence of the festivals and feasts dedicated to false gods & goddesses (read the entire Old Testament if you’re unfamiliar), of the degradation that people sunk into as they became drunk and committed lewd acts, how can anyone who wants to please Him have anything to do with elements that are clearly incorporated from the fertility celebrations dedicated to a false goddess? (Ever heard of Mardi Gras? Ever asked how on earth it has to do with Christ’s sacrifice? Or, did you always get the feeling it is a hedonistic celebration of lust, sexuality and fertility, fueled by alcohol, truly more a part of the worship of Ashtoreth than of Christ?)

    Really, the simplest and most obvious thing is for any true Bible-believing and God-fearing person to remember and celebrate the true hope that came from the time of Passover with Christ’s death, burial and resurrection. And, this we are not commanded to remember only once a year, around the time of Passover. Christ said, “Do this ~as often~ as ye meet, in remembrance of me.” And, then he shared with his disciples the unleavened bread of the Passover and the wine, which we all know (because Christ told us) symbolized his body and blood, which he was going to give in sacrifice for our salvation. Pure and simple. “Do ~this~ in remembrance of me.”

  • Carrie

    One trouble with the article is that it comes at the question purely from a European, A.D. (or C.E.) viewpoint. It neglects to make any acknowledgement of the fact that there had been in existence a fertility goddess for over 3,000 years by the time he picks up his history of the Germans and their Eostre goddess in Europe. The original goddess was widely known throughout the Mesopotamian region as Ishtar, Ashtoreth, Astarte; and then accepted as a Greek and Roman goddess under the names Aphrodite and Venus.

    The author doesn’t seem to understand that the Bible wasn’t written in the context of Dark Ages Europe. The Bible’s context is Mesopotamian and Middle Eastern, and it began to be written thousands of years before Christianity was a widespread religion. So, trying to understand whether the current Church celebration of “Easter” has any pagan roots for its name and practices without acknowledging this long, Biblically relevant and intertwined history shows poor scholarship at best; or at worst that he’s being intentionally misleading and sharing only what supports his personal view about the subject.

    To truly understand the question, it’s necessary to understand the origins of this fertility goddess. The Bible says that Abraham came out of Ur of the Chaldees, and was told to turn his back on all their false gods and goddesses (of which Ishtar was literally Queen). And, from there the story of Israel as God’s chosen people begins. I question whether the author neglects to go to this aspect of Bible history because it is rooted in the Hebrew Old Testament, and refers to Israel becoming God’s chosen people, seeing as he is a lecturer in Islamic Studies himself, and may not want to acknowledge any Jewish history and claim to the Land promised to Abraham, Isaac (not Ishmael) and Jacob.

    But, that is the history. The Israelites were commanded to destroy the idol-worshipping nations around them, and never to worship their false gods, and never to intermarry with these pagan nations. And, anyone familiar with the Old Testament knows that the entire rest of the Old Testament from Genesis to Malachi (though it’s not chronologically laid out) is all about the Israelite’s constant relapse into idol worship, and God’s insistence that they stop it and repent, and return to Him. One of the gods they were most guilty of worshipping was Astarte, Ishtar, Ashtoreth. King Solomon is told his sons will lose the Kingdom because of his own devotion to Ashtoreth, among other gods. (Again, it’s all in the Bible).

    Come into the Greek New Testament. And, watch the struggles that all the Apostles have to separate the followers of Christ from worshipping false gods.

    And, then after these few thousand years of religious history, start talking about the struggle of the God of the Bible against the gods of the pagan nations where His word was being spread, ie. Europe.

    It’s not a hard exercise to stop, compare and consider: Passover, a Jewish remembrance (commanded in the Law) of the time God saved the Israelites from slavery in Egypt involved sacrificing and roasting a lamb with bitter herbs; and telling the history of the feast to their questioning children. Then, Christ came as the Son of God and was crucified at the time of Passover. The intricate symbology of the first Passover, with the unspotted lamb sacrificed to put its blood as a covering on the household, to protect all those within from God’s judgement, became real in Christ’s death on the cross to provide a blood sacrifice for true salvation (from the bondage to sin, not Egypt) for all those who choose to come under his name and have their sins forgiven.

    And, then ask how on earth eggs, rabbits, baby chicks, flowers and any of the other current “Easter” celebrations have anything to do with either the original Passover or with Christ’s sacrifice. The answer is obvious and simple. They have nothing to do with anything in the Bible, except as far as they relate to the worship of Ishtar/Astarte/Ashtoreth, the goddess of love, beauty, sexuality and fertility. The eggs, the baby chicks, the flowers and prolific rabbits are all symbols of new birth, fertility and of Spring. The Church, and many modern-day Christians, are happy to lump Christ’s entire purpose on earth with this pagan celebration, because he died and was resurrected. New life! At the time of Spring (in the Northern Hemisphere). How juvenile and simplistic.

    Knowing God’s total and fervent abhorrence of the festivals and feasts dedicated to false gods & goddesses (read the entire Old Testament if you’re unfamiliar), of the degradation that people sunk into as they became drunk and committed lewd acts, how can anyone who wants to please Him have anything to do with elements that are clearly incorporated from the fertility celebrations dedicated to a false goddess? (Ever heard of Mardi Gras? Ever asked how on earth it has to do with Christ’s sacrifice? Or, did you always get the feeling it is a hedonistic celebration of lust, sexuality and fertility, fueled by alcohol, truly more a part of the worship of Ashtoreth than of Christ?)

    Really, the simplest and most obvious thing is for any true Bible-believing and God-fearing person to remember and celebrate the true hope that came from the time of Passover with Christ’s death, burial and resurrection. And, this we are not commanded to remember only once a year, around the time of Passover. Christ said, “Do this ~as often~ as ye meet, in remembrance of me.” And, then he shared with his disciples the unleavened bread of the Passover and the wine, which we all know (because Christ told us) symbolized his body and blood, which he was going to give in sacrifice for our salvation. Pure and simple. “Do ~this~ in remembrance of me.”

  • Wendy

    Were any of you there when this all happened?No.
    Was the bible written as a diary when all of these events were taking place? No.
    If you want to celebrate Easter or Passover or claim it to be a Pagan holiday, then by all means do so.
    It was a story that was written 40 years after the fact. Can you remember what happened 40 years ago? No. We have documentation from that time. Bits and pieces. We as a society take things that are written in books too seriously and fight over it. Yes we as human beings even kill over it.
    If we could only except each others interpretations and not judge, I would hold a lot more respect for people who claim they know their religions so well. The books are there to give us thought and insight. Not to be used for hate and taken so literally. Guidelines.

  • Wendy

    Were any of you there when this all happened?No.
    Was the bible written as a diary when all of these events were taking place? No.
    If you want to celebrate Easter or Passover or claim it to be a Pagan holiday, then by all means do so.
    It was a story that was written 40 years after the fact. Can you remember what happened 40 years ago? No. We have documentation from that time. Bits and pieces. We as a society take things that are written in books too seriously and fight over it. Yes we as human beings even kill over it.
    If we could only except each others interpretations and not judge, I would hold a lot more respect for people who claim they know their religions so well. The books are there to give us thought and insight. Not to be used for hate and taken so literally. Guidelines.

  • Darrell

    Despite what the so-called modern Christians may believe, the Bible does not teach tolerance. The Bible clearly tells us not to practice the pagan rituals. The Bible also teaches us that God had his people to kill all the pagan worshipers around them. All the holy days we are suppose to be celebrating are clearly listed in the Bible. In case you haven’t noticed yet, the U.S. doesn’t keep any of the holy days that God tells us to forever keep. Nope, we got most of our pagan holidays from the Roman Empire including our sun calendar and names for the days of the week. It’s truly sad, but I think we need a holy war in this country to get rid of all the pagans and there gods. Maybe then God will stop punishing the U.S. for all sins that are committed here.

  • Darrell

    Despite what the so-called modern Christians may believe, the Bible does not teach tolerance. The Bible clearly tells us not to practice the pagan rituals. The Bible also teaches us that God had his people to kill all the pagan worshipers around them. All the holy days we are suppose to be celebrating are clearly listed in the Bible. In case you haven’t noticed yet, the U.S. doesn’t keep any of the holy days that God tells us to forever keep. Nope, we got most of our pagan holidays from the Roman Empire including our sun calendar and names for the days of the week. It’s truly sad, but I think we need a holy war in this country to get rid of all the pagans and there gods. Maybe then God will stop punishing the U.S. for all sins that are committed here.

  • Ethernium57

    The name “Easter” is the “only” similarity? What about rabbits, eggs, eating pork, and celebrating it always on Sunday to name a “few” more “similarities”. This article is propaganda designed to deceive people into calling themselves Christian while unwittingly taking part in ancient pagan practices that defile the Passover and the resurrection of our Lord Jesus. Seek the truth in God’s Word and pray that you don’t fall into this snare that was set for you. Jesus said, “For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am (Jesus is) the Christ,’ and will deceive many.”
    Just because they claim to be followers of Christ doesn’t mean they are actually following Christ, and Jesus warns us not to follow those pagan teachings.
    Lev. 18:30 – “Keep my requirements and do not follow any of the detestable customs(traditions) that were practiced before you came and do not defile yourselves with them. I am the LORD your God.”.

  • Ethernium57

    The name “Easter” is the “only” similarity? What about rabbits, eggs, eating pork, and celebrating it always on Sunday to name a “few” more “similarities”. This article is propaganda designed to deceive people into calling themselves Christian while unwittingly taking part in ancient pagan practices that defile the Passover and the resurrection of our Lord Jesus. Seek the truth in God’s Word and pray that you don’t fall into this snare that was set for you. Jesus said, “For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am (Jesus is) the Christ,’ and will deceive many.”
    Just because they claim to be followers of Christ doesn’t mean they are actually following Christ, and Jesus warns us not to follow those pagan teachings.
    Lev. 18:30 – “Keep my requirements and do not follow any of the detestable customs(traditions) that were practiced before you came and do not defile yourselves with them. I am the LORD your God.”.

  • cliff

    You all are idiots. Ishtar or Easter is older than Christianity by about 12 thousand years estimated, and historical records trace it back to early Egyptian days and various other religions. Christianity doesn’t have the monopoly on the martyred god story and was not the first to mythologize it either.

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