Question: I found "Easter" in Acts 12:4 and nowhere else in the New Testament. Where did the celebration of Easter come from?
Answer: The word "Easter" in Acts 12:4 is a mistranslation. The Greek word is "PASCHA" and should have been translated "PASSOVER," as it is in the other 28 places it appears in the New Testament.
The International Bible Encyclopedia says concerning Easter: "The English word (Easter) comes from the word "estera," a Teutonic goddess, to whom sacrifice was offered in April, so the name was transferred to the Paschal (Passover) feast. The word does not properly occur in Scripture...There is no trace of Easter celebration in the New Testament."
We have no objection to anyone remembering a special day of the year in commemoration of Christ’s Resurrection. Our church commemorates it also. The value being, there will be many people attending the Easter service that otherwise do not attend church.
It is a wonderful opportunity to present to those who are lost, how much Christ loved them and suffered for them by going to the Cross. He suffered the "Hell" of crucifixion to pay for our sins; so we would not have to spend an eternity in Hell paying for our own. He was then resurrected, assuring us that he had power over death (Hebrews 2:14,15), and that God had accepted His payment for the sins of the world. John 5:24 gives this assurance of eternal life to anyone who will receive it by faith.
"Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, HATH EVERLASTING LIFE, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life."
As Christians, we thank our wonderful Savior every day, not just on Easter; that 2,000 years ago He left the glories of Heaven and counted it a joy (Hebrews 12:2) to go to the Cross and be crucified for you and me. Since no one ever loved us like Jesus Christ, then "How can I do less than give Him my best? After all he’s done for me?"