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International Standard Bible Encyclopedia

es'-ter (pascha, from Aramaic paccha' and Hebrew pecach, the Passover festival):

The English word comes from the Anglo-Saxon Eastre or Estera, a Teutonic goddess to whom sacrifice was offered in April, so the name was transferred to the paschal feast.

The word does not properly occur in Scripture, although the King James Version has it in Acts 12:4 where it stands for Passover, as it is rightly rendered in the Revised Version (British and American). There is no trace of Easter celebration in the New Testament, though some would see an intimation of it in 1 Corinthians 5:7. The Jewish Christians in the early church continued to celebrate the Passover, regarding Christ as the true paschal lamb, and this naturally passed over into a commemoration of the death and resurrection of our Lord, or an Easter feast. This was preceded by a fast, which was considered by one party as ending at the hour of the crucifixion, i.e. at 3 o'clock on Friday, by another as continuing until the hour of the resurrection before dawn on Easter morning. Differences arose as to the time of the Easter celebration, the Jewish Christians naturally fixing it at the time of the Passover feast which was regulated by the paschal moon. According to this reckoning it began on the evening of the 14th day of the moon of the month of Nican without regard to the day of the week, while the GentileChristians identified it with the first day of the week, i.e. the Sunday of the resurrection, irrespective of the day of the month. This latter practice finally prevailed in the church, and those who followed the other reckoning were stigmatized as heretics. But differences arose as to the proper Sunday for the Easter celebration which led to long and bitter controversies. The Council of Nice, 325 A.D., decreed that it should be on Sunday, but did not fix the particular Sunday. It was left to the bishop of Alexandria to determine, since that city was regarded as the authority in astronomical matters and he was to communicate the result of his determination to the other bishops.

But this was not satisfactory, especially to the western churches, and a definite rule for the determination of Easter was needed. By some it was kept as early as March 21, and by others as late as April 25, and others followed dates between. The rule was finally adopted, in the 7th century, to celebrate Easter on the Sunday following the 14th day of the calendar moon which comes on, or after, the vernal equinox which was fixed for March 21. This is not always the astronomical moon, but near enough for practical purposes, and is determined without astronomical calculation by certain intricate rules adopted by ecclesiastical authority. These rules involve the Dominical Letters, or the first seven of the alphabet, representing the days of the week, A standing for the first day of the year and the one on which Sunday falls being called the Dominical for that year. There are also involved the Golden Numbers and the Epacts, the first being the numbers from 1 to 19, the cycle of the moon when its phases recur on the same days of the year, the first of the cycle being that in which the new moon falls on January 1. The Epacts indicate the moon's age at the beginning of each year. Easter was thus fixed by these rules, but another difficulty arose when the Gregorian calendar was adopted in 1582, the difference between it and the Julian being then 10 days. This of course affected the determination of Easter, and its celebration by the Greek church, which has never admitted the Gregorian calendar, occurs usually at a different time from that followed by the western churches. This difference may be as much as five weeks and it may occur as late as April 30, while in the West it cannot occur later than April 25 nor earlier than March 22. Occasionally the two come together but this is rare, since the difference between the two calendars is now 13 days.

The Easter feast has been and still is regarded as the greatest in the Christian church, since it commemorates the most important event in the life of its Founder.

H. Porter

3957. pascha -- the Passover, the Passover supper or lamb
... Passover. Of Chaldee origin (compare pecach); the Passover (the meal, the day, the
festival or the special sacrifices connected with it) -- Easter, Passover. ...
//strongsnumbers.com/greek2/3957.htm - 6k

... EASTER. Once ... alive. That was long before Christ lived, and had risen from
the dead on Easter morning. These people had no Easter. ...
/.../chidley/fifty-two story talks to boys and girls/easter.htm

... HYMNS OF THE EARLY CHURCH Easter. 10,10,10,10 Easter. Glory to God! The morn
appointed breaks,. And earth awakes from all the woeful past; ...
//christianbookshelf.org/brownlie/hymns of the early church/easter.htm

Thy way, I got me boughs off many a tree; But Thou wast up ...
//christianbookshelf.org/wells/bible stories and religious classics/easter.htm

Easter Week
... EASTER WEEK. Written for music to be sung at a parish industrial exhibition)
See the land, her Easter keeping, Rises as her Maker rose. ...
//christianbookshelf.org/kingsley/andromeda and other poems/easter week.htm

On the Keeping of Easter.
... On the Keeping of Easter. From the Letter of the Emperor to all those not present
at the Council. (Found in Eusebius, Vita Const., Lib. iii., 18-20.). ...
/.../schaff/the seven ecumenical councils/on the keeping of easter.htm

Easter Tuesday
... SUMMER PART Easter Tuesday. ... [Footnote 1: This sermon appeared first in the Church
Postil, the Explanation of the Epistle and Gospel Texts from Easter to Advent. ...
//christianbookshelf.org/luther/epistle sermons vol ii/easter tuesday 2.htm

Easter Sunday
... SUMMER PART Easter Sunday. ... How else should we gentiles get the idea of cakes on Easter,
when at our Passover we, by faith, eat the Paschal Lamb, Christ? ...
//christianbookshelf.org/luther/epistle sermons vol ii/easter sunday.htm

Easter Monday
... SUMMER PART Easter Monday. Text: Acts 10, 34-43. 34 And Peter opened his mouth,
and said: Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter ...
//christianbookshelf.org/luther/epistle sermons vol ii/easter monday.htm

Easter Tuesday
... SUMMER PART Easter Tuesday. Text: Acts 13, 26-39. 26 Brethren, children
of the stock of Abraham, and those among you that fear God ...
//christianbookshelf.org/luther/epistle sermons vol ii/easter tuesday.htm

Easter Day
... II. THE CHRISTIAN YEAR Easter Day. [627]168 Hail! festal day, to endless
ages known [628]169 Welcome, happy morning! age to age shall ...
/.../various/the hymnal of the protestant episcopal church in the usa/easter day.htm

Easton's Bible Dictionary
Originally a Saxon word (Eostre), denoting a goddess of the Saxons, in honour of whom sacrifices were offered about the time of the Passover. Hence the name came to be given to the festival of the Resurrection of Christ, which occured at the time of the Passover. In the early English versions this word was frequently used as the translation of the Greek pascha (the Passover). When the Authorized Version (1611) was formed, the word "passover" was used in all passages in which this word pascha occurred, except in Act 12:4. In the Revised Version the proper word, "passover," is always used.
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
1. (n.) An annual church festival commemorating Christ's resurrection, and occurring on Sunday, the second day after Good Friday. It corresponds to the pasha or Passover of the Jews, and most nations still give it this name under the various forms of pascha, pasque, paque, or pask.

2. (n.) The day on which the festival is observed; Easter day.

3. (v. i.) To veer to the east; -- said of the wind.

Topical Bible Verses
John 3:16
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

1 Corinthians 11:23-26
For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered to you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread:

Easter (1 Occurrence)
... 2. (n.) The day on which the festival is observed; Easter day. 3. (vi) To veer to
the east; -- said of the wind. Int. Standard Bible Encyclopedia. EASTER. ...
/e/easter.htm - 12k

After (10866 Occurrences)
... This recognition of an after-Sabbath during festive periods has its counterpart
in the later ecclesiastical practice of celebrating not only Easter Sunday, but ...
/a/after.htm - 12k

Morrow (113 Occurrences)
... This recognition of an after-Sabbath during festive periods has its counterpart
in the later ecclesiastical practice of celebrating not only Easter Sunday, but ...
/m/morrow.htm - 41k

Eastern (22 Occurrences)

/e/eastern.htm - 14k

Quaternions (1 Occurrence)
... Acts 12:4 And when he had apprehended him, he put him in prison, and delivered him
to four quaternions of soldiers to keep him; intending after Easter to bring ...
/q/quaternions.htm - 6k

Offering (850 Occurrences)
... of Eng.) Personal tithes payable according to custom, either at certain seasons
as Christmas or Easter, or on certain occasions as marriages or christenings. ...
/o/offering.htm - 39k

Lent (9 Occurrences)
... 3. (n.) A fast of forty days, beginning with Ash Wednesday and continuing till Easter,
observed by some Christian churches as commemorative of the fast of our ...
/l/lent.htm - 9k

Tract (5 Occurrences)
... 10. (v.) Verses of Scripture sung at Mass, instead of the Alleluia, from Septuagesima
Sunday till the Saturday before Easter; -- so called because sung tractim ...
/t/tract.htm - 8k

Paschal (1 Occurrence)
... Noah Webster's Dictionary (a.) Of or pertaining to the Passover, or to Easter;
as, a paschal lamb; paschal eggs. Multi-Version Concordance ...
/p/paschal.htm - 6k

Bible Concordance
Easter (1 Occurrence)

Acts 12:4 And when he had apprehended him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four quaternions of soldiers to keep him; intending after Easter to bring him forth to the people.



Easter: Passover

Related Terms

After (10866 Occurrences)

Morrow (113 Occurrences)

Eastern (22 Occurrences)

Quaternions (1 Occurrence)

Offering (850 Occurrences)

Lent (9 Occurrences)

Tract (5 Occurrences)

Paschal (1 Occurrence)

Before (18954 Occurrences)


Apprehended (5 Occurrences)

Scrutiny (3 Occurrences)

Sabbath (126 Occurrences)

Philippians (2 Occurrences)

Arrest (22 Occurrences)

Trial (45 Occurrences)

Pentecost (3 Occurrences)

Alexandria (4 Occurrences)

Passover (81 Occurrences)

East (228 Occurrences)

Jesus (10891 Occurrences)

Christ (573 Occurrences)

Day (17670 Occurrences)

Discomfiture (6 Occurrences)

Second (2060 Occurrences)

First (4693 Occurrences)

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