Easter is the main Christian holiday, which is annually awaited by millions of believers, not only in Russia, but throughout the world.
This word in Greek means "deliverance" and invariably serves as a reminder that Christ was resurrected, having suffered all the sufferings for the human race.
Usually Easter is celebrated on a Sunday in the spring. Why, then, is this great holiday every year that can be celebrated at different times?
Jewish and Christian Easter
Initially, the celebration of the Christian Easter was closely related to the date of the celebration of the Jewish Passover. It was celebrated not by the solar calendar, but by the lunar Jewish calendar.
The essence of the Jewish Passover is that itIs dedicated to the miraculous liberation of the Jews from the Egyptian bondage. This event took place in the middle of the 13th century BC. It is described in the second book of the Bible - Exodus.
The book says that the Lord warnedIsraelis about the impending salvation and announced them that next night each Egyptian family would lose its first child, since only such a punishment would force the Egyptians to free the Jews from slavery. And that this punishment did not affect the Jews themselves, it was necessary to open the doors of their houses with the blood of the lamb (lamb) stabbed the day before. His blood will save the Jewish firstborn from death and free them from slavery. So it happened. Since then, the Jewish Passover has been celebrated every year, and in memory of this event the Easter lamb is being killed.
This lamb is a type of Jesus Christ,Who was the Savior of the world, crucified on the cross for the sins of mankind. The Gospel says: "Christ is the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world, His precious Blood, shed on Calvary, cleanses us from all sin. And his crucifixion directly on the day of the Jewish Passover is by no means accidental. "
This happened on the full moon day, after the springEquinox, the 14th of Nisan according to the Jewish calendar. And Jesus was resurrected on the third day after the crucifixion, which we call the resurrection. That is why the dates for the celebration of the Jewish and Christian Passover are so interrelated.
The first three centuries of Christian historyThere were just two dates for the celebration of Easter. Some celebrated its 14th Nisan with the Jews as a symbol of the memory of Christ's crucifixion and his death, while others, who turned out to be the majority, on the first Sunday after the 14th Nisan, as a symbol of Christ's resurrection from the dead.
The final decision on the date of the celebration of EasterWas adopted in 325 on the first Ecumenical Council. It was decided: "... to celebrate Easter, after the Passover Jewish, on the first Sunday after the full moon, which will be on the very day of the vernal equinox or immediately after that, but not before the vernal equinox."
The Julian and Gregorian Calendar
Thus, beginning in 325, Christians around the world began to celebrate Easter and other Christian holidays in one day.
However, after the split of the Christian church in 1054The so-called Roman Catholic Church appeared. At first the calendar of holidays remained unified, but then in 1582 Pope Gregory of the 13th introduced the Gregorian calendar, and hence the new calendar. This calendar was considered more accurate from the point of view of astronomy, because now it is adopted in most countries of the world.
And the Russian Orthodox Church to this dayUses the old Julian calendar (which is still called Orthodox in the people), because Jesus Christ lived in those days when the Julian calendar operated.
Proceeding from this calendar, Easter, described inThe gospel, according to chronology, goes right after the Passover Jewish. In the Gregorian calendar, it is believed that the Catholic Easter can not only coincide with the Jewish, but also be somewhat earlier than it.
Thus, sometimes Orthodox Easter coincides with the Catholic, and sometimes there is a rather large divergence in numbers.
It is also worth noting that the GregorianThe calendar is certainly more precise, but for a hundred years now the blessed fire in Bethlehem descends precisely on the day of Easter, according to the Julian (Orthodox) calendar.