Unity

To self-identify as a Christian, there is essentially only one foundational requirement. Jesus lived as a human being, was killed by the political/religious forces of his day, and then he returned to earth alive where he taught and talked with his disciples (tradition says for 40 days).

The resurrection is the foundation of the church. We call that day Easter.

Different traditions have different ways to celebrate this week and the day. No problem. That adds spice and variety to life.

But no matter what tradition you find yourself in—Catholic, Orthodox, one of the hundreds of varieties of protestantism—you will be celebrating Easter and the resurrection.

Wright and Bird in their immense New Testament survey, The New Testament in its World (yes, I’m still studying it, up to page 670 with another 200 pages to go), talked often of the plea of the early church leaders for unity of the church.

Those early followers had to puzzle out a lot of ideas as they strove to understand what happened. The authors while describing this struggle also talk about how disapproving those early leaders would be of the trends we have where a pastor or church leader wants to break away and start their own thing.

Especially at this time with Easter week so strange as we are all (pretty much globally) isolated to prevent the spread of disease, Christians could be celebrating two things.

The unity of belief in the resurrection. (Does anything else really matter?)

The cultural variety in the ways we celebrate—accepting the various strands of traditions rather than arguing over who is right and who is not.

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