Persecution against Bible believing Christians will not come as much from outside the church as it will come from the compromise, new age, social justice “Christians”.
For all those scribes and pharisees who say that easter is a pagan holiday, here ya go. Easter is in the Bible!
And when he had apprehended him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four quaternions of soldiers to keep him; intending after Easter to bring him forth to the people. (KJV)
Um, wait a minute… let’s look at it in context…
Now about that time Herod the king stretched forth his hands to vex certain of the church.
And he killed James the brother of John with the sword.
And because he saw it pleased the Jews, he proceeded further to take Peter also. (Then were the days of unleavened bread.)
And when he had apprehended him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four quaternions of soldiers to keep him; intending after Easter to bring him forth to the people.
Peter therefore was kept in prison: but prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for him.
Notice here, it wasn’t Christians who were keeping “Easter”, it was King Herod who was a known pagan…
Of course, it is probably more appropriate that the word here be translated at Passover rather than easter, as it is in most other literal translations. Since Herod (who was an Edomite appointed by Rome to rule over Israel) was looking for ways to gain favor with the Jewish leadership, it is more likely that his staff would observe the Passover Sabbaths and not do business during that time.
It is true that many people have been worshiping a pagan “holiday” that God never directed them to do. Throughout scripture, God repeatedly reveals that He hates the pagan “grove” worship of Ishtar and other false gods.
Meanwhile, we ignore the feast day of Passover that God did establish. Jesus and His disciples all kept Passover (Matt 26; Mark 14; Luke 2, 22; John 2, 6, 11, 12, 13, 18, 19; 1 Cor 5:7), and it was during the Passover Sedar (meal) that Jesus revealed the true meaning behind it… that it was fulfilled in Him.
Food for thought…
“In Germany they came first for the Communists, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Communist. Then they came for the Jews and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Jew. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trade unionist. Then they came for Catholics, and I didn’t speak up because I was a Protestant. Then they came for me and by that time no one was left to speak up.”
Rev. Martin Neimoller, a German pastor arrested by the Gestapo in 1937.