On par with my distaste for St. Patrick’s Day (just the mandatory wearing of green part) is my apprehension toward April 1st. I don’t enjoy attempts directed at fooling me. I really do not like Fools’ Day. Practical jokes are annoying rather than practical. Can we change the name or just stop it all together? Perhaps there’s a slight chance of the first; but, as for the former, it is highly unlikely that the world will cease a tradition that dates back to the 1300s.
This year, however, I enjoyed April 1st; it was Easter after all.
Easter falling on April 1st made me smile. I do not know if the Apostle Paul enjoyed practical jokes (I doubt it), but I am sure that he reflected on foolish things.
17 For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel—not with wisdom and eloquence, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.
18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 19 For it is written:
“I will destroy the wisdom of the wise;
the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate.”
20 Where is the wise person? Where is the teacher of the law? Where is the philosopher of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? 21 For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not know him, God was pleased through the foolishness of what was preached to save those who believe. 22 Jews demand signs and Greeks look for wisdom, 23 but we preach Christ crucified: a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, 24 but to those whom God has called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. 25 For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength.
1 Corinthians 1:17-25 (NIV)
Easter, better named Resurrection Day, celebrates the “foolishness” of the cross. That is to say, what looked like an end-of-all-hope event actually opened the door to the great victory. Death conquered death. Not wisdom. Not well-crafted instruction. Not philosophy. Death.
Jesus died on the cross to save sinners. Jesus died on the cross to save me. Jesus died on the cross to save you. Jesus died for those who wear green and play practical jokes.
Jesus died even for those who pinch!