He is not here; for He is risen, as He said.
(History and Helps for Enjoying Easter Traditions While Teaching Eternal Truths)
The history of hiding eggs goes back to possibly when the Pagans used eggs in their Spring celebrations. After early Christian influence, the Pagans hid their eggs to avoid persecution. Another possible reason for hiding eggs is because they were forbidden during Lent, so symbolically they were hidden and found at the end of Lent.
Easter Egg Hunting began in America in the 1700’s when German immigrants brought with them their Osterhase tradition (Easter hare who laid eggs for children to find).
Before you hide the eggs this year, share with your children what we share when we do our Christmas web that the true meaning of the holiday gets hidden in the activities of the season and we need to hunt for the true meaning – that Jesus died for us and is risen from the dead.
Christians consider eggs to be ‘the seed of life’ and so they are symbolic of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. The egg also might represent the stone that was rolled away from the tomb where Christ was hidden, revealing his Resurrection. And the hunting could be related to the fact that on Sunday morning after the crucifixion, two ladies went to the tomb looking for Jesus’ body, but He wasn’t there. The angel told the ladies: He is not here; he is risen .
Put Bible verses in some of the eggs you hide and then gather together to read them all after they are found. Some suggested verses are:
- Revelation 21:5 Jesus makes all things new.
- Galatians 2:20 Jesus Christ lives.
- Matthew 28:6 Jesus is risen.
- Song of Solomon 2:12 The flowers appear on the earth.
- Song of Solomon 2:12 The time of the singing of birds has come
- Ecclesiastes 3:1 God made everything beautiful
- Psalm 103:5 God satisfies my mouth with good things.
Make one egg empty like the tomb and give a prize for the one who finds that egg which represents the true message of Easter that Jesus is alive!
As you are outside hunting eggs, notice the signs of spring and repeat the Bible verses above that apply. Enjoy God’s beautiful world together.
Make Resurrection Rolls with your children – hide marshmallows in crescent rolls and when they are baked, the rolls are empty on the inside, just as the tomb was empty when the ladies went looking for Jesus
Have fun singing Hooray from “Every Song a Bible Story” (Maranatha Music). This is a happy song about the empty tomb that children really love.
Click on this resource for 12 simple activities to help you celebrate the Resurrection