Lent, Good Friday and Easter
by R. F. Becker
(NOTE: Mr. Becker is a protestant and writes from
that perspective. We must admit, however, that the warning he sounds against
participation in Roman paganism is, if anything, even more appropriate for
Baptists than for protestants. Mr. Becker exhibits more spiritual discernment
than the majority of those who would today profess themselves
"Baptists." He would seem closer to practicing "the faith once
delivered unto the saints" than those modern "Baptists" who join
"Thus saith the Lord, Learn not the way of the heathen." (Jeremiah 10:2)
"Babylon hath been a golden cup in the Lord's hand, that made all the earth drunken" (Jer. 51:7).
"Come out of her, my people, that ye may not have fellowship with her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. For her sins have reached unto heaven and God hath remembered her iniquities" (Rev. 18:4, 5).
has recorded much in His Word of the wicked idolatry of ancient
has also revealed by His Spirit that "
the ancient idolatry of
the thought of Christians joining hand in hand with pagans in supporting and
that particular part of
just a few words to the
are three kinds of people in the professing
there is one more type of person in the
is to the many weak and carnal believers who have unwittingly kept
This type of believer, though he does seem to have saving faith, yet is a disappointment to the godly. There is something weak about the way these take up with men's traditions. They often appear to be trying to walk as close to the broad road as they can without really being on it. And they are very ingenious in discovering reasons for what they do; reasons which cannot be found in Scripture; reasons which appeal to the flesh.
weak believer within our Protestant church seems to feel he is under obligation
to be present or have a part in his church's celebrations of Babylonish
festivals. Having never been taught the truth, he does not realize that in
these observances his own church is only aping
of the great evils of the early churches of
In Smith's Dictionary of the Bible we read: "This sect, like the false prophet of Pethor, united brave words with evil deeds. Mingling themselves in the orgies of idolatrous feasts they brought the impurities of those feasts unto the Christian church. All this was done as a part of a system supported by a doctrine accompanied by the boast of prophetic illumination."
not this what we see in our churches today at Christmas and Easter? One of the
greatest of all abominations to God is false worship. Romanism is the extreme
ultra-development of Satanic subtlety in worship. For she is very
Now, there may be some who read this who will be disposed to utterly condemn what is written in this tract. Let them consider here the words of the great Dr. Paley: "There is a principle which is a bar against all information; which is proof against all argument, which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance. That principle is 'CONTEMPT prior to EXAMINATION'."
However I am sure that every honest soul will be inclined to search himself and try his ways as he reads on, and if he is guilty of observing paganism will become sorrowful and say to Christ in tears "Is it I?" (Mark ). Only the unsound and unreal resent searching.
religious festivals of
another booklet, "The Truth About Christmas," I have shown how our
Romish Christmas is only a combination of the Catholic "Mass" and the
name of Christ. So it will be sufficient to state here that this annual festive
season was held in the month Thebeth (our December) in
Let us begin our study of Lent by asking, as many will, If this observance of abstinence is wrong, how did it become so universal? How did it come to occupy so large a space on our calendar?
Why, the Roman Catholic Church put it there during the sixth century! She "borrowed" the 40 days called "Lent" from the worshippers of the Babylonian queen of heaven.
Let not my reader suppose that Lent is observed only in the Roman Church and our anemic Protestant churches today.
In Humboldt's "Mexican Researches," volume 1, page 404, we find how the pagan Mexicans kept a Lent. "Three days after the vernal equinox began a solemn Lent, Good Friday and Easter fast of forty days in honor of the sun."
Landseer's "Sabean Researches," page 112, we are informed how an
Egyptian Lent of 40 days was held expressly in honor of Adonis or Osiris, the
great mediatorial god. So we can see
as on December
any type of pagan idolatry. For I notice that in 1950 the Roman Lent begins in February!
rankest superstition in connection with the abstinence of Lent. It was only the beginning of another form of Roman evil.
An early Christian of Marseilles, writing in the fifth century, said: "It ought to be known that the observance of the 40 days' fast had no existence so long as the primitive church remained pure."
another refrains from drinking only one glass of beer or wine or whiskey per day! So sunk in sin is man that by these Romish pagan denials of the flesh, he supposes he is placing himself in God's favor.
can you take part in such a mockery of God as Lent, which not only brings
ignominy upon the name of Christ, but helps to ruin the souls of thousands and
thousands? Remember one more fact. The
"Behold, ye fast for strife and debate, and to smite with the fist of wickedness: ye shall not fast as ye do this day, to make your voice to be heard on high . . . Is not THIS the last that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke? Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? . . . Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth speedily: and thy righteousness shall go before thee; the GLORY of the Lord shall be thy rereward" (Isa. 58:4-8).
is another Popish holy-day that has caused many weak believers to sin. But we
find no authority for its observance in the Bible. Whence all this annual ado
and false concern by the ungodly who care naught for a heart cleansed from sin?
And why are so many Christians moved into observing
Any thoughtful student unbiased by tradition or men's imagination will have no difficulty in understanding that our Lord Jesus Christ did not die on a Friday. Proof of this fact is in the following verses:
"For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the whale; so shall the Son of man be THREE DAYS and THREE NIGIITS in the heart of the earth'' (Matt. ).
"And He began to teach them, that the Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders, and the chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and AFTER THREE DAYS rise again" (Mark 8:31).
"Saying, Sir, we remember that that deceiver said, while He was yet alive, AFTER THREE DAYS I will rise again" (Matt. 27:63).
"And that He was buried, and that He rose again the THIRD DAY according to
the Scriptures" (I Cor. 15:4).
In John 11:9, we read: "Jesus answered, Are there not twelve hours in the day?" Here our Lord teaches that twelve hours make a day. Therefore in His reckoning a day and a night are exactly 24 hours.
In the Jewish order of time the night preceded the day (Gen. 1:5; Mark ). The night began at in the evening, ending at in the morning, when the day began.
Now, from the Scriptures quoted, we conclude one important fact. Christ was in the tomb after His death and before His resurrection three days and three nights, which make 72 hours--no less.
In each of the four Gospel records we read of Mary of Magdala and others coming to the sepulchre to anoint the body of Jesus. If we carefully consider them all, one fact stands out beyond any question. That is, when they came to the grave, Jesus was gone. In Matt. 28 we have the record of the angel rolling away the stone. But this was not to liberate the Lord of Glory. It was only to show the world that He was gone. Sometime before the women witnessed the tomb unsealing our Saviour had come forth from the dead. The angel said: "He is risen, He is not here."
We know that haste was made by those who put Christ in the tomb of Joseph in order to have him buried before the beginning of the Jewish Sabbath, which began at in the evening. And we read in John 19:31 "for that Sabbath was an high day." Now this Sabbath was the Passover Sabbath and did not come on Saturday. The weekly Sabbath or seventh day or Saturday was not called a "high day." But sometimes special feasts among the Jews were called Sabbaths or "high days" even if they did not fall on Saturday. Thus we learn from John 19:31 that Jesus was buried by His sorrowing followers the EVENING before the HIGH DAY Sabbath.
Now Christ could never have been buried on a Friday evening or He would not have risen until Monday evening to fulfill Matt. 12:40 and the others we quoted. He could not have been entombed on a Thursday evening or He would not have risen until the evening of the first day of the week, or Sunday. And He could not have risen early Sunday morning either because three days and three nights before that or 72 hours would have been Thursday MORNING, and we know He was buried in the evening.
'Therefore we have only one deduction left if we abide carefully by the Scriptures. Our Lord must have risen at the very end of the THIRD day or about in the evening. He arose at the end of the weekly Sabbath. He was in the tomb we know during the High Day Passover Sabbath. He was gone when the women came to His grave very early on the first day of the week. Thus the Crucifixion of the Son of God as recorded in the Bible must have taken place on--Wednesday.
So we find that the very root of all "Good Friday" observances is based on untruth. It is only another Romish invention designed for her profit, which weans men from truth and turns them to fables.
is Easter? One of
about the name "Easter?" Like its Mother Babylon the Great (Rev.
17.5) Easter has its name on its forehead. It is not a Christian name. It came
Babylonish worship, Semeramis, the queen of heaven, as Astarte, was symbolized
by a dove or the "Mediatrix'' without whose intercession none could ever
be born anew. In our day the same pagan blasphemy is taught to Roman Catholics,
only the Chaldee Astarte has become "Mary Mediatrix, the Mother of
God!" And how little do Catholics themselves realize that in their Easter
ceremonies, the madonna they worship as being without sin is only a Roman copy
of the Chaldean queen of heaven from wicked
In the Apostolic days of the true Church the believers remembered the death and resurrection of Christ every day. In Acts 20:7 this remembrance feast of breaking bread and drinking of wine was held on the first day of the week. This remembrance of Christ was kept in obedience to the words of Jesus Himself in Luke 22:18, 19 and Paul's admonition of I Cor. 11:23 to 26. Such was the love of those who had accompanied our Saviour in His ministry, and had seen the end of the Lord (James ) that while they lived, the worshippers in the infant Church allowed no idolatry to corrupt the true honoring of Christ. It was only as the anti-Christ "mystery of iniquity" that Paul spoke of in II Thess. 2 began to slowly unfold itself, that the outlawed pagan observances appeared in the true Church. Among the early Christians we find no trace of an annual observance of the resurrection of Christ. The festival we read of in church history of the third and fourth centuries was not called "Easter." It was called "Pasch" or "Passover" because it took place at the time of the Jewish feast of that name. It was altogether different than the Roman Catholic Easter in our churches today. This feast was not of Apostolic origin, yet it was not idolatrous nor was it preceded by a Lent. Until the end of the second century this feast was observed on March 23rd.
goddess "Astarte." In
And is it not very significant to the thoughtful reader that in the selfsame era—in the year 476--about the time the word "Easter" was first used by the Roman Church, there was also inaugurated in that same Church, the long and evil reign of the "man of sin," the "son of perdition," the "dark ages" of the papal anti-Christ?
It was not until the end of the sixth century, however, that paganism, now rapidly taking on great proportions in the Roman Church, forced the observance of Easter into the calendar.
In Britain this replacing of the Christian Passover with Lent and the worship of Astarte as Easter, met at first with great resistance, since there was a full month difference in the time of the two observances. Only after violence and bloodshed did the papal power cause the worship of Astarte, now called Easter, to displace and then eclipse that which was formerly done to honor Jesus Christ.
a few words about the customs of Easter. The hot cross buns as well as the dyed
eggs figured in the Chaldean rites of
we pass on we ought to consider how an egg became an emblem of our Easter. Many
are the tales from the pens of heathen writers but one from
much for the ancient Easter eggs. But now in the twentieth century our
educated, cultured and refined generation of pagans have improved upon the egg
What a dreadful judgment awaits a nation of people, who in the clear light of the blessed Gospel, can annually perpetuate such high handed idolatrous evil.
"Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people'' (Prov. ).
"A wonderful and horrible thing is committed in the land; The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means; and My people love to have it so: and what will ye do in the end thereof?" (Jer. 5:30, 31).
is a day of shallow thinking and shallow profession. And the stream of
so-called Christians which is polluted by
since the Roman Catholic Church is indeed Babylon the Great of Rev. 17 and her
"Virgin Mary" is none other than the Chaldean "Mediatrix,"
or queen of heaven, how utterly should everyone who loves Christ forsake her
festivals, and how forcibly should we condemn them! Jesus Christ preached
against false prophets. So did Paul and Peter and John and many others of
Christ's own faithful ones, down through the generations till now. Then whence
this hush! hush! Hands off! policy in so many pulpits today? Why is the True
and Living church frightened into silence about these things by the false
church? Why do so many pastors in places of responsibility stand so helplessly
shall I say more of this Easter problem? And what shall I say of you who
profess the Name of Christ who follow
you timid pastors, why do you fear to warn your flocks against the idolatries
of the mother of harlots? Why do you hold out one hand to
What would Christ say of you? What would the Christian martyrs say—what would the faithful reformers say--what would the Puritan fathers of our country say, if they could be here and see you allowing the faith they fought for and died for to be sacrificed upon the altars of Babylon the Great by their own Protestant heirs, now stupefied by the pomp and glitter of Rome?
spirit of God said long ago, "Come out of her, My people, that ye have
no fellowship with her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues" (Rev.
18:4). But weak Christians and lukewarm churches have not come out of
embraced them to their bosoms.
according to God's promise, we have
"Put yourselves in array against