Steve Lunetta: Why Easter matters

By Steve Lunetta

Last update: Wednesday, April 12th, 2017

Let’s forget religion. It’s all bunk anyway. Why bother talking about God, Jesus, angels, demons, sin, redemption, grace and the Bible?

Heck, things are going so well we really don’t need these archaic and foolish beliefs.

Our society is at the pinnacle of peace and kindness. Why, you can walk down any street in America and feel perfectly safe. There is no danger due to hate or malice. Those were all eliminated years ago.

Our scientific advances have eradicated hunger and poverty. Didn’t we close down our homeless shelter and erase all those pesky tents down in the riverbed?

Our sheriff’s deputies have nothing to do. I am sure they sit around the station all day long folding paper airplanes and laughing at the good old days when there was crime aplenty – murders, thefts, and other law-breaking.

Racism? Haven’t seen it in years. Just recently, didn’t the KKK elect a black fellow as president of their organization? The South is now a bastion of tolerance and respect for all manner of people.

Does anyone cheat on their taxes anymore? I recall seeing some news report that mentioned the impending closure of the IRS because there was simply no longer any need for it. Everyone pays taxes on time and in full.

Family strife is also a thing of the past. Our progressive thinking regarding families has socially engineered the perfect family unit with everyone left to define for themselves what that unit looks like. With such freedom, the family is the bulwark of stability in our society.

Divorce has been eliminated, domestic abuse forgotten, and suicide all swept away. Faith in ourselves and mankind has eliminated all social ills and replaced the useless conventions of the past.

Hogwash.

Fact of the matter is this: A as we turn away from traditional Christian values, our society continues to devolve into the narcissistic mess that we see all around us.

For a culture to grow and prosper, a critical component is a shared value system. Values give structure in the form of laws, courtesy, and order. They also form the bases of social organizations that support charitable functions.

Our holidays are a reflection of what we value.

Many think that Christmas is the most important holiday of the year. I would tend to disagree. While it’s great fun having presents, Santa, reindeer, decorated trees, turkey for dinner, and all the rest, it’s simply a birthday celebration of one person.

Heck, my birthday is just as important.

But, what sets Christmas apart is what happened later. This guy, Jesus, walked around telling people about a much different way of living – to be kind and generous, not cheat people, to honor authorities, to respect women, to pay taxes, and not to lie.

Then, he did something amazing. He predicted his own death and then said he would rise from the tomb in three days. He also said that his sacrifice was for you and me. That his death on the cross was to pay for all the wrong things we have done. The ultimate act of unselfishness.

Of course, the Romans were aware of this and posted a guard to make sure his body wasn’t stolen by some of those crazy poor fishermen. He disappeared anyway.

On the third day, the stone was rolled away and the tomb was empty.

This holiday we call Easter validates Christmas. It makes December 25 far more important than October 17, my birthday. Unless I can rise from the dead in three days, which I sincerely doubt. I can hardly get out of bed in the morning.

Easter becomes pivotal in our society and culture. It celebrates an incredible act of love and selflessness. Name someone today who would gladly give their life for all of humanity?

Sure, we all could probably sacrifice ourselves for our child or mother or spouse. But would you sacrifice your life for Donald Trump? Or Hillary Clinton? I doubt it. This Jesus fellow did.

Want to know more? Check out a local church this Sunday. The Signal is running ads for many churches this week. Pick one. You’ll be glad you did.

Steve Lunetta is a resident of Santa Clarita and will be hanging out at the COC football stadium this Sunday for church if you want to join him. He can be reached at slunetta63@yahoo.com.

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Steve Lunetta: Why Easter matters

Let’s forget religion. It’s all bunk anyway. Why bother talking about God, Jesus, angels, demons, sin, redemption, grace and the Bible?

Heck, things are going so well we really don’t need these archaic and foolish beliefs.

Our society is at the pinnacle of peace and kindness. Why, you can walk down any street in America and feel perfectly safe. There is no danger due to hate or malice. Those were all eliminated years ago.

Our scientific advances have eradicated hunger and poverty. Didn’t we close down our homeless shelter and erase all those pesky tents down in the riverbed?

Our sheriff’s deputies have nothing to do. I am sure they sit around the station all day long folding paper airplanes and laughing at the good old days when there was crime aplenty – murders, thefts, and other law-breaking.

Racism? Haven’t seen it in years. Just recently, didn’t the KKK elect a black fellow as president of their organization? The South is now a bastion of tolerance and respect for all manner of people.

Does anyone cheat on their taxes anymore? I recall seeing some news report that mentioned the impending closure of the IRS because there was simply no longer any need for it. Everyone pays taxes on time and in full.

Family strife is also a thing of the past. Our progressive thinking regarding families has socially engineered the perfect family unit with everyone left to define for themselves what that unit looks like. With such freedom, the family is the bulwark of stability in our society.

Divorce has been eliminated, domestic abuse forgotten, and suicide all swept away. Faith in ourselves and mankind has eliminated all social ills and replaced the useless conventions of the past.

Hogwash.

Fact of the matter is this: A as we turn away from traditional Christian values, our society continues to devolve into the narcissistic mess that we see all around us.

For a culture to grow and prosper, a critical component is a shared value system. Values give structure in the form of laws, courtesy, and order. They also form the bases of social organizations that support charitable functions.

Our holidays are a reflection of what we value.

Many think that Christmas is the most important holiday of the year. I would tend to disagree. While it’s great fun having presents, Santa, reindeer, decorated trees, turkey for dinner, and all the rest, it’s simply a birthday celebration of one person.

Heck, my birthday is just as important.

But, what sets Christmas apart is what happened later. This guy, Jesus, walked around telling people about a much different way of living – to be kind and generous, not cheat people, to honor authorities, to respect women, to pay taxes, and not to lie.

Then, he did something amazing. He predicted his own death and then said he would rise from the tomb in three days. He also said that his sacrifice was for you and me. That his death on the cross was to pay for all the wrong things we have done. The ultimate act of unselfishness.

Of course, the Romans were aware of this and posted a guard to make sure his body wasn’t stolen by some of those crazy poor fishermen. He disappeared anyway.

On the third day, the stone was rolled away and the tomb was empty.

This holiday we call Easter validates Christmas. It makes December 25 far more important than October 17, my birthday. Unless I can rise from the dead in three days, which I sincerely doubt. I can hardly get out of bed in the morning.

Easter becomes pivotal in our society and culture. It celebrates an incredible act of love and selflessness. Name someone today who would gladly give their life for all of humanity?

Sure, we all could probably sacrifice ourselves for our child or mother or spouse. But would you sacrifice your life for Donald Trump? Or Hillary Clinton? I doubt it. This Jesus fellow did.

Want to know more? Check out a local church this Sunday. The Signal is running ads for many churches this week. Pick one. You’ll be glad you did.

Steve Lunetta is a resident of Santa Clarita and will be hanging out at the COC football stadium this Sunday for church if you want to join him. He can be reached at slunetta63@yahoo.com.

About the author

Steve Lunetta

Steve Lunetta

Raging, far-centrist conservative moderate with a slightly tongue-in-cheek humorist approach.

  • lois eisenberg

    “Why Easter matters”
    And why Passover matters and all the other Religious Holidays !!

    • Ron Bischof

      Non sequitur. Steve is writing about Easter.

      You’re welcome to write and submit a column about your topic of choice.

      Happy Passover, Ms. Eisenberg!

    • Jim de Bree

      The celebration of Passover took place just before the Crucifixion and Resurrection of Christ, and the two holidays have been entwined from the beginning—the word Pasch, originally meaning Passover, came to mean Easter as well. See: https://www.infoplease.com/spot/movablefeasts1.html

      For many years my church held a Passover seder as part of its Easter celebrations. In my opinion, one cannot truly appreciate Christianity unless you understand its Jewish roots.

  • Ron Bischof

    I enjoyed your column and expression of faith, Steve. Nicely done!

    “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people”. “It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

    – John Adams, Founder and President

  • Gil Mertz

    I’d like to highly recommend the new movie “The Case for Christ” which is in theaters now. Great story of a hardened atheist and how his search for hard evidence to disprove Christ’s death and resurrection led to his personal conversion. The evidence was just too overwhelming.

    • Tanya Hauser

      I look forward to seeing this.

  • Tanya Hauser

    Thankful for His resurrection!

    “And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is futile and your faith is empty.” 1 Corinthians 15:14

  • Scott Ervin

    It’s not necessary to be religious to have a shared value system. So the premise, Steve, is off to a shaky start. And the implication that all those “bad things” in the opening paragraphs are somehow the fault of the non-religious, or even worse, the non-Christians, is just “hogwash.”

    Your conclusion that the “narcissistic mess” our country is due to a “turn away from Christian values” is self-serving at best. As an atheist it’s laughable. And I’m trying to be kind here. I’ve raised three children ages 25-35 outside of any religious context and absent any religious bias, I think if you met them, you would agree they are not only not narcissistic but that their values are quite in keeping with the America of old you seem to be lamenting.

    I have to wonder how, exactly, you came to your conclusions? Have you ever met with any atheists (or even secularists)? Do you have any atheist or agnostic friends?

    With respect to which holiday is more important, I’m a Peeps guy, so I’ll go with Easter.

    • Ron Bischof

      “Have you ever met with any atheists (or even secularists)? Do you have any atheist or agnostic friends?”

      Yes. And I’ve encountered similar anecdotes and demeanor previously. No doubt Steve has as well.

      What are your thoughts on Penn Jillette’s experience as related here, Mr. Ervin?

      https://churchpop.com/2016/01/16/atheist-penn-jillette-christians-evangelize/

      • Scott Ervin

        Penn Jilette: I think he’s a showman being a showman. I’m guessing if people began pestering him on a regular basis with their religion, his bodyguards would be on a short chain. So I don’t take it seriously.

        I’m not sure what you mean by “similar anecdotes and demeanor” and I don’t like to assume. I’d appreciate it if you would be more specific: What anecdotes and what demeanor? Thanks.

        • Ron Bischof

          I have a different opinion of Mr. Jilette as an empirical review reveals he has a history of rational libertarian writing and dialog. He seems a tolerant fellow with an intellectual capacity that showmanship inadequately describes.

          To expand and respond to your question:

          • A personal anecdote to counter a general societal observation.
          • On demeanor, the use of “laughable”, “I’m trying to be kind here…” and the implication that Steve doesn’t know or interact with atheists/secularists. Yes, on the latter you can counter with “It’s was only a question.” but intended or not, it reads as condescending.

          That you mention “militant atheist” in a response to Jim indicates you have an awareness of the phenomena. Also, as what noted in Jim’s response to you, I perceived that you mischaracterized Steve’s words on values as well.

          I too know Steve personally. I sincerely doubt that anyone who does would describe him as intolerant or inexperienced in working with folks who hold a wide variety of perspectives.

          Overall, if your objective was to rebut Steve’s Op-Ed and persuade others to your viewpoint, I don’t think you succeeded in your initial post.

          I do note that you moderated your “tone” in a subsequent response to Jim.

          • Scott Ervin

            I’m not so much trying to “persuade others” as to register my complaint. As I said to Jim, this perception, or opinion, that morals are only possible through religion is tiresome. My personal anecdotes are representative of every other atheist I know so I think your characterization is dismissive. And it’s why I asked the question in the first place of whether Steve knew any atheists.

            As I said to Jim, I don’t think societal norms have really changed all that much, just our awareness of how they “really” are. I think the technology of communication has outpaced our mastery of that technology. That is, while we have all been brought up, to one degree or another, to filter our communication when face to face, we seem to drop those filters when we get behind a keyboard. And without actual intonation, tone is much more difficult to perceive as well as propound. The result is either a perception of intent (or attitude etc.) where there is none, or perhaps the revelation of an intent or attitude we simply weren’t aware of. And yes, I just blamed everything on the internet. Lol (but not in a condescending way)

            And militant atheist is something that, when applied to the religious, is more kindly called “evangelism.” Tap a born-again Christian or a born-again atheist and you’ll get similar .. let’s call it enthusiasm. Only the atheist is labeled “militant.” So my use was somewhat tongue-in-cheek, not an admission.

            So I’ve registered my complaint. I’m not trying to convert anyone. And I’ve a granddaughter to pay visit. Namaste. Have a happy Easter.

          • Ron Bischof

            “…morals are only possible through religion is tiresome.”

            Your complaint is registered against a strawman. No one appears to be making that argument. Consider that you may be seeking it instead. Additionally, I maintain that the words and phrases you used do have meaning independent of intonation and body language imparted by physical presence.

            Cheers and enjoy your family! That’s of far more import than our scribblings here. 🙂

    • Jim de Bree

      Scott–having grown up in an atheistic family myself, I certainly understand your feelings. Among my siblings, I am the only one who is a Christian and my family certainly goes out of its way to tell me I am nuts. My family, by the way, is exactly as you describe your children, “not narcissistic but that their values are quite in keeping with the America of old.”

      My parents were extremely moral, hard working, decent people, who practiced the last five of the ten commandments but disbelieved the first five. My siblings are the same way. My guess is that your values are very consistent with those contained in the last five commandments. I also think that it is safe to say that modern society is turning away from those commandments. Whether or not you believe in God, or whether you accept Christ as your savior, western civilization is built on Judeo-Christian values.

      For what it is worth, note that Steve never said the “…”bad things” in the opening paragraphs are somehow the fault of the non-religious, or even worse, the non-Christians.” He said, “…as we turn away from traditional Christian values, our society continues to devolve into the narcissistic mess that we see all around us.”

      Steve used the term “traditional Christian values,” but he could as easily have said Judeo-Christian values that shaped western civilization.” Perhaps that would have been less offensive to you, but would have gotten the same point across.

      Furthermore, I know Steve personally and I know him to be a man who is active in the community, who has friends who do not share his religious beliefs. He is man who truly cares about humanity. I am sure if you met him, you would like him and would find him to be a person with whom you could easily interact.

      One last point, prior to becoming a Christian over twenty years ago, I absolutely loathed organized religion. My views were like yours, but much more extreme. Since then my life has been more fulfilling. Easter Sunday has new meaning to me and is the most important day in my life from a spiritual perspective.

      • Scott Ervin

        Jim, I hear what you’re saying. I’m a veteran of the online “tone misinterpreted” game so perhaps you’re right about Steve. As the saying goes, some of my best friends are Christian. Truly. Awesome people that I converse with regularly without issue.

        I’m no longer a “militant atheist” as many become, in particular when first “born-again.” I rarely comment on such articles or posts anymore because I’m not interested in converting anyone. What irks me is the implication, and yes I still think it’s there, that you cannot have morals or values without some attachment to religion. It simply isn’t true and there have been many studies to back this up.

        Judeo-Christian values are, at their core, just plain old survival values that have been with mankind for centuries. Humans would not have survived without some code of ethics and whether it’s in our genes or simply passed down, it is how we survive. We help one another. That’s the bottom line.

        I honestly don’t think values have changed all that much. It’s just that our dirty laundry is much more on display with the advent of the internet and instant communication etc. You see it every day. Why just yesterday, someone posted on Facebook that they watched as a citizen of Santa Clarita got out of their car to stop traffic for a family of ducks to cross over Newhall Ranch Road by Bridgeport. No word on whether it was an atheist or a Christian. 😉

Steve Lunetta

Steve Lunetta

Raging, far-centrist conservative moderate with a slightly tongue-in-cheek humorist approach.