WE congratulate Christians worldwide on this year’s observance of the annual Lenten Season.
The Christian lent, encapsulating a 40-day fasting as observed by Jesus Christ, is a period of congregational abstinence; which involves self-denial in eating, drinking and other carnal activities like sexual intercourse, visual and audio defilements, and the likes. It is a period in the year when the moral and spiritual tolerances of the individual devout is put to test and when he is set on course to live as he would be required to live ever after.
The significance and symbolism of Lent is fully appreciated when we contrast the First Adam in the book of Genesis with the Second Adam (Jesus Christ) in the gospels. The First Adam fell to temptation. The Second Adam, led by the Spirit, became insulated against the tempter. Having fasted for 40 good days, he conquered the intrigues and antics of Satan; breaking the jinx, once and for all, forever.
Today’s fasting, kick-started from the Ash Wednesday, climaxes on the 40th day (Sundays excluded), which is known as Good Friday. The Holy Saturday marks the intervening day Jesus the Saviour spent in the tomb; while the adjoining Sunday is the Easter Day, marking the resurrection of Christ.
We learn from this rich religious exercise the whole essence of the Christian Faith. When we purify our heart through the spiritual exercise of fasting, we get energised to resist the devil. We become dead to sin and we get empowered to resurrect with the Triumphant Christ on the last Easter (the Great Resurrection Morning).
Christians are enjoined to reorder their steps, draw closer to God, eschew all semblances of sin and transgression and become prepared to reign with God and His Christ eternally in the hereafter.
This is the high order of the Christian fast. We wish all Christian faithful and adherents a happy Lenten period and prosperous Easter celebrations in advance.