Resurrection “Faith”?

Ted Grimsrud—Easter Sunday (April 24) 2011

What happened on that first Easter Sunday, nearly 2,000 years ago? Does it really matter? Do we have any way, truly, of knowing?

Or, a parallel set of questions, is the Christian doctrine of Jesus’ resurrection credible? Is it helpful? Is it necessary? How do we connect (or not) our beliefs about what happened with Jesus after his death and what will happen to us after our deaths?

My entire life I have loved asking questions and desired powerfully to understand, to make sense of life’s big questions. However, issues related to resurrection never really caught my imagination. Certainly, I did not grow up with an embedded theology insisting that the belief in the resurrection was the one essential Christian faith commitment. So, I have always had a bit of a detached attitude about questions such as those stated above.

I remember as a kid going to church on Easter occasionally—one time, at least, our family got up early and went to a sunrise service (what I remember is having to get up early, not the service itself!). Of course, we had Easter egg hunts and Easter candy. But we would never have talked about the meaning of Easter in a serious way that I remember.

In the largely secular environment of my youth in rural southwestern Oregon, Easter was not very deeply ingrained in my surrounding culture. I was surprised many years later to learn, while pastoring in South Dakota, that Easter weekend was a holiday for everyone there (e.g., no school in the public schools on Good Friday). Continue reading “Resurrection “Faith”?”