Why is Easter called “Easter”? What Does Easter Mean?

Easter

The resurrection of Jesus from the tomb on the third day after his crucifixion is commemorated as Easter. Easter is the fulfillment of the Messiah’s prophecy of being persecuted, dying for our sins, and rising on the third day (Isaiah 53).



Remembering Jesus’ resurrection gives us hope that we can overcome sin on a daily basis. Easter is three days after Jesus’ death on the cross, according to the New Testament.

Easter
Easter is the fulfillment of the Messiah’s prophecy of being persecuted, dying for our sins, and rising on the third day (Isaiah 53).

On the fourteenth of Nisan (our March-April), the Jewish Passover, the earliest Christians celebrated the resurrection. Because Jewish days were counted from evening to evening, Jesus had His Last Supper on the evening of the Passover and was killed on the next day.




Early Christians who were celebrating the Passover honored Jesus as the Paschal Lamb and Redeemer, and this was the beginning of Easter.

It’s unclear where the word Easter came from. The word may have come from the Anglo-Saxon Eeostre or Eastre — a Teutonic goddess of spring and fertility, according to the Venerable Bede, an eighth-century monk, and scholar.

Recent scholars have been unable to locate any reference to the goddess mentioned by Bede, and the theory has been dismissed.

The Norse eostur, eastur, or ostara, which meant “season of the growing sun” or “season of fresh birth,” is another option. The origins of the word east are the same. Easter would be associated with the change of seasons in this situation.

Rather than the pagan origins of Easter, a more recent and nuanced interpretation emerges from the Christian context. The early Latin word for Easter week was hebdomada alba, or “white week,” and the Sunday after Easter was known as dominica in albis, or “white Sunday,” because of the white robes of individuals who had recently been baptized.



Alba is a Latin word that means both white and dawn. People who spoke Old High German made a translation error and used the plural word for dawn, ostarun, instead of the plural for white. We get the German Ostern and the English Easter from ostarun.

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