Friday, April 3, 2009

An Easter egg? Can we believe the "impossible"?

I was recently asked to give a short talk to a ecumenical Easter service for a group of children at a local primary school (grades 1-7). Here is my talk:

Just because something is hard to believe does not mean it isn't true. My experience as a scientist tells me that. Many scientific discoveries have been unexpected, surprising, and going against what people thought was common sense.

At Easter Christians celebrate the death and the resurrection of Jesus. But did Jesus really rise from the dead? Is that possible?
After all, history and experience tell us once people are dead they are dead forever. But just because we have not seen something happen does not mean that it can never happen. Jesus said, "With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible." (Matthew 19:26)

I then did the following simple science demonstration.
Consider an egg and a small bottle. Who thinks that this egg can fit in this bottle? Before I saw this happen I never thought it was possible.

What does this have to do with Easter? Next Friday we have a holiday to celebrate Good Friday. Even though Jesus died we call it Good because Jesus died on our behalf. He died so we could be forgiven for all our sins (for all the many ways we have ignored and disobeyed God). He died so we could have the offer of the free gift of eternal life. But he didn’t just die. On Easter Sunday we celebrate his resurrection. Jesus conquered death, came to life and appeared to many eyewitnesses, and now lives forever.

So on Easter Sunday when you are eating all your yummy chocolate eggs think about this egg. It doesn’t look too yummy. But it does illustrate that something can be true even if we don’t expect it to be. God is not constrained by the laws of nature we know about. Jesus really did rise from the dead. He has power over death and sin. What is impossible for man is possible for God. God raised Jesus from death to life. We can be forgiven and we can have the gift of eternal life.

1 comment:

  1. this sounds like a great Easter talk. The uses of 'eggs' throughout the talk is particularly engaging. I think I might have to borrow some of these ideas the next time I do a kids Easter talk.