Jehovah`s Witness/Your take on Eatser

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Question
It has been some time since I have seen you active here.  Nice to have you back.  Your answers are usually well researched so can I ask you to read what Derrick has written about Eastser and give us your research on the matter

Answer
Hello Gordon,

Thank you for your question.  I see you are from the same area where I live.

Something that nearly every one that believe that the King James Bible is the only acceptable word of God forget is that, by the time it was produced, many pagan ideologies had crept into the Christian theology, so when they translated the Bible into the English of the day, they used terminologies that they were taught such as Easter.  Bellow is information I have gathered (not from the WTBTS) but from historians and other Bible commentaries.  One thing you will notice from a few of the accounts is that the non Jewish Christians were at odds with the Jews in Jewish Christian as to how to remember the death of our Lord.  The Jewish Christians observed the Lords Evening Meal” (Last Supper) on Nisan 14 each year.  This was a movable date.  The non Jews wanted to observe the same occurrence on the first Sunday after the It was not by inspiration that the word Easter is employed in the KJV but  errant theological bias due to the adoption of Easter into the Christian ideology.

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Barnes Commentary
Intending after Easter. There never was a more absurd or unhappy translation than this. The original is simply after the Passover, μετα το πασχα. The word Easter now denotes the festival observed by many Christian churches in honour of the resurrection of the Saviour. But the original has no reference to that; nor is there the slightest evidence that any such festival was observed at the time when this book was written. The translation is not only unhappy, as it does not convey at all the meaning of the original , but because it may contribute to foster an opinion that such a festival was observed in the times of the apostles. The word Easter is of Saxon origin, and is supposed to be derived from Eostre, the goddess of love, or the Venus of the North, in honour of whom a festival was celebrated by our pagan ancestors in the month of April. (Webster.) As this festival coincided with the Passover of the Jews, and with the feast observed by Christians in honour of the resurrection of Christ, the name came to be used to denote the latter. In the old Anglo-Saxon service-books the term Easter is used frequently to translate the word Passover. In the translation by Wicliffe, the word paske, i.e., passover, is used. But Tindal and Coverdale used the word Easter, and hence it has very improperly crept into our translation. (Clark.)  -[Underlining and bold mine]
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Barnes copied from Clark so here is what Clark had to say

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Intending after Easter to bring him forth μετατοτασχα, After the passover. Perhaps there never was a more unhappy, not to say absurd, translation than that in our text. But, before I come to explain the word, it is necessary to observe that our term called Easter is not exactly the same with the Jewish passover. This festival is always held on the fourteenth day of the first vernal full moon; but the Easter of the Christians, never till the next Sabbath after said full moon; and, to avoid all conformity with the Jews in this matter, if the fourteenth day of the first vernal full moon happen on a Sabbath, then the festival of Easter is deferred till the Sabbath following. The first vernal moon is that whose fourteenth day is either on the day of the vernal equinox, or the next fourteenth day after it. The vernal equinox, according to a decree of the council of Nice, is fixed to the 21st day of March; and therefore the first vernal moon is that whose fourteenth day falls upon the 21st of March, or the first fourteenth day after. Hence it appears that the next Sabbath after the fourteenth day of the vernal moon, which is called the Paschal term, is always Easter day. And, therefore, the earliest Paschal term being the 21st of March, the 22d of March is the earliest Easter possible; and the 18th of April being the latest Paschal term, the seventh day after, that is the 25th of April, is the latest Easter possible.

     The term Easter, inserted here by our translators , they borrowed from the ancient Anglo-saxon service-books,  [My comment- from tradition they ALLREADY had the word was put into the King James and NOT from good translation practice ] or from the version of the Gospels, which always translates the τοπασχα of the Greek by this term; e.g. {# Mt 26:2}: Ye know that after two days is the feast of the passover. Wite ye that aefter twam dagum beoth Eastro. {# Mt 16:19}: And they made ready the passover. And hig gegearwodon hym Easter thenunga (i.e. the paschal supper.) Prefixed to # Mt 28:1, are these words: This part to be read on Easter even. And, before {# Mt 28:8}, these words: {# Mr 14:12}: And the first day of unleavened bread when they killed the passover. And tham forman daegeazimorum, tha hi Eastron offrodon. Other examples occur in this version. Wiclif used the word paske, i.e. passover; but Tindal, Coverdale, Becke, and Cardmarden, following the old Saxon mode of translation, insert Easter: [Underlining  bold and italics mine]
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Family New Testament Notes

Four quaternions; four companies of four soldiers each; making, in all, sixteen. One company guarded him three hours, and was then relieved by another. Easter; the passover. Easter is supposed to have been originally the name of a heathen feast, which occurred in the month of April. It was afterwards applied to the Jewish feast of the passover, which occurred about the same time. Tyndal, in his translation of the Bible into English in 1526, used this word instead of passover, and our English translators in 1611 retained it in their version. But there was no Christian feast called Easter in the days of Peter. And the word Pascha which is here translated Easter, means passover, and should have been so translated .  [ bold mine]
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Jamieson, Fausset, Brown commentary
intending after Easter—rather, "after the Passover"; that is, after the whole festival was over. (The word in our King James Version is an ecclesiastical term of later date , and ought not to have been employed here ). [bold and underline mine]
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The Catholic Encyclopaedia, like some other reference works, paraphrase the writings of  Irenaeus in regard to Ploycarps visit to Rome about the observance date of the “Last Super”.  When they do so, they insert the word Easter.  This is what the Catholic Encyclopaedia says

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 A letter of St. Irenćus is among the extracts just referred to, and this shows that the diversity of practice regarding  Easter had existed at least from the time of Pope Sixtus (c. 120). Further,  Irenaeus states that St. Polycarp, who like the other Asiatics, kept  Easter on the fourteenth day of the moon, whatever day of the week that might be, following therein the tradition which he claimed to have derived from St. John the Apostle, came to Rome c. 150 about this very question, but could not be persuaded by Pope Anicetus to relinquish his Quartodeciman observance.
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Notice how the writers here use terms (besides  Easter) that a Catholic would expect such as  “Pope Sixtus”; “ St. Polycarp”;   “St. John” and “Pope Anicetus”   There is nothing unusual for a writer to use terms that his audience will relate to.  However in this case by inserting the word Easter it gives the impression that “Easter”   was as common then as it is today. Now here is a translation of the works of  Irenaeus where this account is taken from.  You will notice Irenaeus does not mention the word Easter. but refer to the "observance" that the apostles kept.  The apostles observed once a year the "last Supper" they had with Jesus. It was not an observance of his resurrection but his death.

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And when the blessed Polycarp was sojourning in Rome in the time of Anicetus, although a slight controversy had arisen among them as to certain other points…For neither could Anicetus persuade Polycarp to forego the observance [in his own way], inasmuch as these things had been always observed by John the disciple of our Lord, and by other apostles with whom he had been conversant; nor, on the other hand, could Polycarp succeed in persuading Anicetus to keep [the observance in his way], for he maintained that he was bound to adhere to the usage of the presbyters who preceded him. And in this state of affairs they held fellowship with each other; and Anicetus conceded to Polycarp in the Church the celebration of the Eucharist, by way of showing him respect (Irenaeus. FRAGMENTS FROM THE LOST WRITINGS OF IRENAEUS. Translated by Alexander Roberts and James Donaldson. Excerpted from Volume I of The Ante-Nicene Fathers (Alexander Roberts and James Donaldson, editors); American Edition copyright © 1885. Electronic version copyright © 1997 by New Advent, Inc).
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Derrick argues that the Easter or (Passover) event in Acts 12 occurs AFTER the Festival of Unfermented Cakes.  The Jews viewed that festival as a part of the Passover

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Wikipedia
In Israel, Passover is the seven-day holiday of the Feast of Unleavened Bread , with the first and last days observed as legal holidays and as holy days involving abstention from work, special prayer services, and holiday meals; the intervening days are known as Chol HaMoed ("Weekdays of the Festival"). Diaspora Jews historically observed the festival for eight days, and most still do. Reform and Reconstructionist Jews and Israeli Jews, wherever they are, usually observe the holiday over seven days [Bold and underline mine]
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So the Biblical and historical evidence is that the word EASTER in Acts 12 should not be there.

However for “King James Only” adherents, no amount of information will persuade them otherwise.  Some hold that the King James Bible is “THE” one and only inspired rendering of Gods word. It is extremely difficult to educate such ones that that is not the case.  NO Bible in existence today is 100% accurate 100% of the time.  They are accurate to the point of showing us what Gods plan for mankind has been through the centuries and into the future, how God deals with us and why Jesus was here.  But many Bibles, especially those that are related to the KJV give inaccurate information on some of the finer points, thus leading the reader in the wrong direction.

Personally I compare about 30 different Bibles and constantly use various Biblical Greek and Hebrew dictionaries.

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