A relatively new phenomena in our news items is the development of ‘fake news’ stories. There is much said about what is real or fake, who could be behind the fake stories and how to spot reliable sources. The consequences range from mild amusement to the possibility of changing the course of history. Recent examples include the whereabouts of Elvis, the discovery of a World War II plane on the moon, and the Pope’s support for Donald Trump during the presidential campaign!!
This year Easter Day, also known as Resurrection Sunday, falls on April Fool’s Day. A day when we are often encouraged to believe “foolish” stories in the news. On the first Easter Day the news headlines would have been– “He’s not here, He has Risen!” Jesus’ friends and followers found themselves asking “can this be true?” as they were confronted with this amazing, surprising news. From this time onwards this question and our response to it is crucial to what we believe and how we live.
In a recent UK survey 43% of people said they believed in the resurrection. However only a very small percentage of them would consider themselves to be practising Christians. Why is this?
Perhaps it is because they have only heard the end of the story without understanding the significance of Jesus’ death on the cross.
“For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.” (1 Corinthians 1v18)
We can get into real trouble believing news that is fake or foolish, but this is nothing compared to misunderstanding or believing that the message of Easter is just a made-up story. The good news of Easter is transformational because it’s true.
Rev. Chris Hawley