Easter and Christmas are both Christian festivals, where Easter is the first festival, and Christmas is the last festival of the year.
Christmas is celebrated on November 25 every year by a huge number of people around the globe. However, it is also celebrated on January 7 by Orthodox Christians.
Easter will be celebrated on April 17 in, 2022, and its celebration date is calculated through Computus every year.
These festivals come in the winter and bring excitement with them.
During this time, houses are decorated, goodies are baked, feasts are prepared, gifts are exchanged, and, most importantly, families come together.
Both festivals have religious values and importance attached to them, which revolve around Jesus’s birth and resurrection.
- Easter celebrates the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, while Christmas commemorates his birth, highlighting two significant events in the Christian faith.
- The date of Easter varies annually, as the lunar calendar determines it and falls on the first Sunday after the first full moon following the vernal equinox; Christmas, however, is consistently celebrated on December 25th each year.
- Customs and traditions associated with Easter often include egg hunts, the Easter Bunny, and attending church services. In contrast, Christmas traditions feature gift-giving, Christmas trees, and the figure of Santa Claus.
Easter vs Christmas
The difference between Easter and Christmas is that Easter is celebrated as a symbol of Jesus Christ’s resurrection after his crucifixion by the Romans while Christmas is celebrated as a day of his birth.
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The people celebrate Easter because of the resurrection of Jesus after the crucifixion by the Romans.
The prophecy of the Messiah says that (Isaiah 53), “Who would be persecuted, die for our sins, and rise on the third day”.
Easter is celebrated to remember the resurrection of Jesus, and it is also a way to remember that there will always be victory over sin.
The word Christmas is obtained from another word, “Cristes maesse”, which also means the mass of Christ. It is said that Santa Claus gives gifts to everybody on this day, and he is the Father of Christmas.
This is an annual festival celebrated among Christians. The most common Christmas decorations are mistletoe, ivy, and holly. This time is considered as the festival season in many countries.
|Parameter of Comparison||Easter||Christmas|
|Celebration Day||First Sunday after the Paschal full moon||Every year Christmas is celebrated on November 25.|
|Significance||Easter signifies Jesus’s win over death. Jesus’s resurrection means that those who followed him have been gifted eternal life.||Christians celebrate it as a way of appreciating God’s love for our world through Jesus Christ’s birth.|
|Bible Story||Easter stories in the Bible will appear in different parts like the Judas’ Betrayal, the Crucifixion of Jesus, Last Supper and Jesus’ Resurrection.||In the New Testament, Christmas stories can be read in Luke 1-2 Matthew 1-2.|
|Followers||Christians.||Christians and non – Christians.|
|Events||Easter eggs hunting, Easter bunnies, and egg decorating are some of the non-religious Easter traditions.||Christmas tree decoration, gift-giving, symbolic decorations, feasting, etc.|
What is Easter?
Easter is celebrated as the resurrection day of Jesus Christ. Easter festival dates are based on the Church’s Lunar Calendar.
Usually, on this day, people gather and sing hymns that are dedicated to Easter. Some non-traditional festivals like Easter Eggs and Bunnies are also followed.
At Easter, there is a fasting period called Lent, in which most churches set a period for remembrance and repentance.
Lent starts on Ash Wednesday, and it ends on Good Friday (the day of the crucifixion of Jesus). The leading week up to Easter is known as “Passion Week” or “The Holy Week”.
The week includes days like Maundy Thursday (this day is a remembrance of “The Last Supper” where Jesus has met his disciples to observe Passover), Palm Sunday (on this day Jesus came to Jerusalem), and the last Good Friday (on this day Jesus would be certified on the cross).
Easter is the festival of the foundation of the Christian faith, therefore, it is a very significant date among the Christians. This festival is closely related to Passover, which is a Jewish festival.
What is Christmas?
Christmas is another festival in Christianity. By celebrating Christmas, people celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, which is on 25 December, according to the Western church.
On this date, Two Pagan festivals are also celebrated by honouring the sun, and it could be somehow possible that December 25 was picked to check the impact of Paganism.
Different families celebrate Christmas differently. Families have different traditions, but few things remain common in most of them: setting & decorating X-mas trees, buying each other presents and decorating houses.
A traditional Christmas meal would include turkey with stuffing, gravy, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, vegetables, and pumpkin pie. The meaning of Christmas is Christ-Mass.
At first, Christmas was celebrated not only for one day but for a whole season for centuries in some parts of the world, but presently the celebrations start on Christmas Eve on the 24th of Dec only.
The date of celebrating Christmas is not selected randomly. It wasn’t until three and half centuries after the birth of Christ that the date December 25th was picked to celebrate Christ’s birthday.
Pope Julius, I was the one who picked the date for celebrating Christ’s birthday in 350AD, and it was formalized in the era of the Roman Empire when the emperor Justinian declared a civic holiday on the 25th of December in 529AD.
Main Differences Between Easter and Christmas
- Easter is the 1st festival of the year, and it celebrates the resurrection of Jesus on the third day from the tomb after crucifixion while Christmas is the last festival of the year, and it celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ.
- Easter is also known as Pascha, Resurrection Sunday, or Zatik. Christmas is also known as X-mas, Noel and Nativity.
- The Council of Nicaea decreed that Easter should be observed on the first Sunday following the first full moon after the spring equinox in 325AD. And Pope Julius I was the one who picked the date for celebrating Christ’s birthday in 350AD, and it was formalized in the era of the Roman Empire when the emperor Justinian declared a civic holiday on the 25th of December in 529AD.
- At Easter, there is a fasting period called Lent, in which most churches set a period for remembrance and repentance. During Christmas, November 24 is celebrated as Christmas Eve; the next day after midnight, it is celebrated as Christmas Day.
- During Christmas, people place Christmas trees in their houses and people dressed as Santa Claus can be seen everywhere asking children what present they want on Christmas Eve. At Easter, the symbol of resurrection is an egg. People attend church, gift each other Easter eggs & bunnies, play Easter egg hunting, and much more.
- Easter food could include butter lamb, carrot cake, Easter bread, ham, side dishes, etc. Christmas food could include turkey, gingerbread cookies, ham, stuffing, mashed potatoes, and much more.
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Chara Yadav holds MBA in Finance. Her goal is to simplify finance-related topics. She has worked in finance for about 25 years. She has held multiple finance and banking classes for business schools and communities. Read more at her bio page.