The word 'Easter" does not come from Ishtar or Astarte! This does not even make
linguistic sense since words from those languages do not migrate into English.
Quote==Because the English Anglo/Saxon language originally derived from the Germanic, there are many similarities between German and English. Many English writers have referred to the German language as the "Mother Tongue!" The English word Easter is of German/Saxon origin and not Babylonian as Alexander Hislop falsely claimed. The German equivalent is Oster. Oster (Ostern being the modern day equivalent) is related to Ost which means the rising of the sun, or simply in English, east. Oster comes from the old Teutonic form of auferstehen / auferstehung, which means resurrection, which in the older Teutonic form comes from two words, Ester meaning first, and stehen meaning to stand. These two words combine to form erstehen which is an old German form of auferstehen, the modern day German word for resurrection.=="Is the Name Easter of Pagan
Origin?"by Roger Patterson at http://bit.ly/1KqW2st
Quote==From the Late Latin name Paschalis, which meant "relating to Easter" from Latin Pascha "Easter", which was in turn from Hebrew (pesach) "Passover". Passover is the ancient Hebrew holiday celebrating the liberation from Egypt. Because it coincided closely with the later Christian holiday of Easter, the same Latin word was used for both.==From http://goo.gl/aJlkvx
On Bede's spurious claim about the origin of Easter as a goddess name:
Quote==This was his attempted etymology of Easter - which is only called that in English of course. The problem is that as the Goddess in question, Eostre is completely unknown otherwise, and Bede was an enthusiast for adopting pagan customs in to Christianity or allowing them to persist where it did not impact on Christian doctrine where possible (out of kindness and a desire to allow people to keep their old ways), so this proposed etymology is probably spurious. In the 19th century a German antiquarian invented Osatra, as the German form, using Bede as his source.
Bede admits this idea is his speculation - he is not actually aware of a goddess called Eostre, he just thinks there was one. There is not a single reference to her, from the Anglo-Saxon Chronicles, any of the other writings we have from the period, or from inscriptions. No depiction - no amulets - nothing. Her Germanic version was invented completely in the 19th century, and again has no evidence whatsoever from history or archaeology to back it up.==From goo.gl/laCMGT
Second point, the Easter eggs:
Quote==Christians first began using eggs to celebrate Easter in ancient Mesopotamia, when they dyed eggs red - the color of blood - to symbolize the power of Jesus' blood to give people new life. In some Orthodox churches, priests still bless red eggs during Paschal (Easter) vigil services on the night before Easter. You and your children can dye an entire group of eggs red rather than a variety of colors, and then discuss how Jesus loves people so much that He was willing to suffer and bleed on the Cross to pay the cost of our sins.==From http://bit.ly/1KgXqMI
Even if eggs were used as a pagan symbol, eggs are originally God's eggs because He created the chickens that lay the eggs. Eggs are part of the created world, created by God.
Thirdly, what about that fluffy bunny rabbit? Many sources state that the Easter bunny arrived with German immigrants and a tradition of "an egg-laying hare." The children "made nests in which this creature could lay its colored eggs. Eventually, the custom spread across the U.S. and the fabled rabbit's Easter morning deliveries expanded to include chocolate and other types of candy and gifts, while decorated baskets replaced nests." See more at http://goo.gl/Auf1Z7
Like the eggs, bunnies are part of God's creation. Even if they have been used
as a pagan symbol of fertility by certain groups, the rabbit was originally just
a creature made by God and will always be such a creature. Symbols change
meaning across time and culture, and many objects and animals have served as
symbols for many religions.
There is nothing inherently evil with decorating an egg as part of celebrating the resurrection of Jesus, and nothing wrong in pretending the bunny is hiding the eggs (unless you do not like to use these stories, which is a decision by parents) or giving a stuffed bunny to a child.
In fact, seeing colored eggs or stuffed bunnies as evil is actually akin to a pagan worldview where objects have inherent secret meanings and/or are animated by spirits. Ironically, those who label Easter eggs and bunnies as evil are reacting in a pagan manner. See the CANA article on symbols.
Much of this slandering of Easter traditions is rooted in the works of Alexander
Hislop, who has been refuted and debunked. He was wrong! He did not support his
statements historically. See CANA article on Alexander Hislop.
Hislop's influence has led many into myths and untruths. These untruths, along with websites that preach hate and legalism, have been spread by cults and those who have fallen for these fear-based untruths.
FACTS, NOT MYTHS OR FEAR should be our watchword.
"But have nothing to do with worldly fables fit only for old women. On the other hand, discipline yourself for the purpose of godliness." 1 Timothy 4:7
"He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because
there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own
nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies." John 8:44b
Let us not believe lies or spread them. For Christians, let us celebrate the risen Christ and use Easter to tell others about the resurrected Savior.
"He is not here, for He has risen, just as He said. Come, see the place where He was lying." Matthew 28:6
"For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures..." 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4
"Easter -- Is It Pagan?" By Ralph Woodrow (who repudiated his earlier
work, "Babylon Mystery Religion"
Celebrating with Easter Eggs for Christians
Easter and Passover
How the date for Easter is determined
TWO BABYLONS EXPOSED
Hislop's 'Babylonian Mystery Religion' Teaching Exposed and Overturned: The Commendable Intellectual Honesty of Ralph Woodrow
GotQuestions on Easter
Book Review of "The Two Babylons," CRI Journal