Saturday, March 31, 2012

Easter Countdown Day 4:The Savior's Arrest/Jesus Heals the Soldier

Easter Countdown Day 4

A piece of rope and a soldier

And while he yet spake, lo, Judas, one of the twelve, came, and with him a great multitude with swords and staves, from the chief priests and elders of the people. Now he that betrayed him gave them a sign, saying, “Whomsoever I shall kiss, that same is he: hold him fast.” And forthwith he came to Jesus, and said, “Hail, master”; and kissed him. And Jesus said unto him, “Friend, wherefore art thou come?” Then came they, and laid hands on Jesus, and took him.
And one of them smote the servant of the high priest, and cut off his right ear.
And Jesus answered and said, “Suffer ye thus far.” And he touched his ear, and healed him.

Matthew 26:47-50; Luke 22:50-51

...How did the Savior react to Judas's betrayal, and the arrest? Interesting note: In this culture, arresting someone at night was a highly illegal practice. Such official business had to be carried out during the day. 
...In other accounts, the apostle who cut off the soldier's ear is named as Peter. Why did Peter do this? How did the Savior react? Why did He heal  the wounded soldier?

Friday, March 30, 2012

Easter Countdown Day 3: The Savior in Gethsemane

Easter Countdown Day 3

A Sacrament Cup

Then cometh Jesus with them unto a place called Gethsemane, and saith unto the disciples, “Sit ye here, while I go and pray yonder.” And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, “O my father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: Nevertheless, not as I will, but as thou wilt.”

Matthew 26:36, 39
(See also Alma 21:9; D&C 19:16-19)

Note: I feel that I should add something here. In my faith, the Savior's prayer in the garden of Gethsemane is a powerfully significant part of the atonement. I don't know enough about other religions yet to say whether this is a unique belief, but I understand that it is not a common one, so I thought I would add a little bit about what we believe on this for the interest of those who may be curious.

The Church website says this:

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Easter Countdown Day 2: Thirty Pieces of Silver

Easter Countdown Day 2

Three Dimes

Then one of the twelve, called Judas Iscariot, went unto the chief priests, and said unto them, “What will ye give me, and I will deliver him unto you?” And they covenanted with him for thirty pieces of silver.

Matthew 26:14-15
(See also Zechariah 11:12-14)

...Why do you think Judas did what he did? We can assume that the Savior would not have called him as a member of the Twelve if he was not in some way a loyal and devoted servant, so why do such a terrible thing?

...Some scholars speculate that Judas, as many others, envisioned the promised Messiah as a war leader who would physically overthrow the Roman government, and was disappointed in Jesus' humble, peaceful ministry. They think that Judas' betrayal could have been motivated by desire to put the Savior in a position where he would have to show his strength and power, and become a mightier figure in the eyes of the people.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Easter Countdown Day 1:The Last Supper/Jesus Institutes the Sacrament

Easter Countdown Day 1

A Cracker

And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, “Take, eat; this is my body.” And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, “Drink ye all of it; For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.”

Matthew 26:26-28
(See also 3 Nephi 20:3-8; 3 Nephi 26:13; John 6:51)

...Jesus knew that this would be His last day, and he would soon be arrested and killed. He spent the evening with his Apostles, teaching them. They were puzzled by some of the things he said. Why do you think he didn't tell them exactly what was coming?

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Easter Is Coming

Hi there! I know, I know, it's been FOREVER since i've posted. What can i say, life gets busy and while i do love this blog, there a too many other things that take precedence. Anyway, I am back on sharing ideas and some projects i've been doing. Today, I'm working on an Easter.

Now, Easter has never been a super important holiday in my mind. I just never really understood the whole bunny and eggs thing. I mean, it's fun and all, but what does it really have to do with the Savior's death and resurrection (which to me is the real reason for the holiday). Christmas and Santa Claus at least makes a little sense to me - the symbolism of giving, of good will, of peace and love. A rabbit hiding eggs around your house? For some reason i just can't make a connection, no matter how much some try to force it.

So I've been trying to think of ways for our family to focus on the true meaning of Easter a little more. Because really, when you think about it, the Savior's suffering, his death and especially his resurrection really deserve just as much occasion as his birth, don't you think?

Anyway, I finally got around to putting together a countdown - something i've been meaning to do for the past three years: An Easter Story countdown.

The first blog i came across, the one that inspired me, was We Talk of Christ. In my research today, I also found similar things HERE and HERE.

I meshed all three together to make my own set of countdown eggs, using symbols and scriptures that mean the most to me. I made three sets, one for us and two to give away.

I made gift cards for our friends explaining what to do.

One of the friends that i'm giving a set to are religious, but not members of the LDS Church like we are. All of the scriptures are from the Bible anyway, but there are some "See Also" scriptures included from the Book of Mormon. Instead of making an entirely different set for them, I decided to gift that family a copy of the Book of Mormon along with their set of eggs so they can look up those extra scriptures if they are interested.

I wish i had a nicer basket for the top one, but it was better than the cheap colorful Easter basket that we have to use:

But it'll be a great activity  regardless of the basket. We'll get a nicer one for next year. I'm very excited to do this, and to have a daily opportunity to talk about the events of Jesus Christ's death and resurrection with our young children. It also takes us through little by little, detail by detail, allowing the children to focus on a little bit at a time and therefore (hopefully) remember it better.

I'll be sharing the scriptures and symbols that i used in my own set as the countdown progresses, starting next wednesday. You can make your own set using the sites above, or you can join us here as we do ours.

 (April 8, 2012) Today is the last day of the countdown. We have been keeping our eggs on display throughout the countdown so our boys could see and remember. Here they are all lined up.