”Because I Live, You Also Will Live”

Easter greetings of the Ecumenical Council of Churches in Hungary

Easter is the celebration of the life which overcomes death. Jesus declares and promises, ”Because I live, you also will live” (John 14:19, NIV). The Lord who has conquered death lives still and is the one we can turn to throughout all the circumstances of our lives. The one who is alive also makes it possible for us to live. And so, we proclaim that there is no greater value or treasure than that of living in Christ.

Earthy life, in all its diversity, is a gift from God. The smile of a child who can barely speak, the excitement of an adolescent preparing for life, or the happy faces of a young couple preparing for their wedding all reflect the joy and beauty of human life itself. And in later years, the achievements of our work life also bring joy in the prospect of continuing improvement.

When, however, Jesus speaks of the promise of life, he paints a picture for us only of the value and beauty of this earthly life, but also of the gift of eternal life. He who conquered death wishes us to share the promise of a life that goes beyond the painful reality of our earthly mortality. For in eternal life, there will be no space nor time, nor the limits which our physical existence places upon us; there will likewise be no crying or disappointment. This is the promise of the first Easter.

Jesus Christ, who knows every beat of our restless hearts, greets his disciples after his Resurrection with the words, “Peace be with you.” (Luke 24:36). He radiates tranquillity and brings inner harmony and peace to the minds and spirits of his people. His words stand in stark contradiction to every act of enmity, hatred, and senseless violence.

Let our prayer this Easter be this: Make peace among us, O Lord, everywhere in the world. Let us be the representatives of your holy will which creates life, preserves lasting values, and cries out for peace.