Sunday, April 17, 2022 | 2 a.m.
There are close to 2.2 billion Christians on planet Earth celebrating the miracle of all miracles, the resurrection of Jesus Christ and the affirmation of one of Christianity’s chief tenets. It is a time of great celebration and joy — notice all the beautifully dressed children and the colorful Easter eggs.
There are close to 14 million Jews worldwide who are commemorating Passover. For the Jewish people, Passover celebrates our deliverance from the slavery of Pharaoh, the ruler of Egypt. It is a story recounted in the Book of Exodus and one which Jews are commanded to tell from generation to generation so it will never be forgotten.
That means there are 2.214 billion people who have very good reason to rejoice in the miracles of faith and the basic goodness of human beings. I do not mean to exclude the other 5 billion people with whom we share this planet, only to focus on those who have something to celebrate today.
And, oh, what a week for such a celebration.
Whether it was the continued violence in our streets — and in subways — committed by people who should not have guns or the abhorrent criminal acts of Russia’s Vladimir Putin, who remains intent on flattening Ukraine and killing all of its people, there is no shortage of examples of man’s inhumanity and the inherent failure — so far — of good to triumph over evil.
That, to me, makes both Passover and Easter a time not to celebrate but to double down on the meaning of the message. That’s the message that affirms for most people, the idea of a greater force in our life which demands a higher purpose for the way we live it.
The world knows far too well the evils of enslaving one people by another. Human beings are born to be free. We also know that making war on peaceful neighbors is an abomination and contrary to the good teachings of both the Old and New Testaments.
So why do we continue to allow it?
Yes, the United States and our European allies continue to supply Ukraine with weapons to defend itself. Thank God!
But what happens when most Ukrainian men have been killed or captured by Putin’s murderers and there is no one left to fight? Whither goest the women and children at that point? Does that mean the evil that is Russia’s desire to disappear Ukraine goes unabated? Unpunished?
At some point we all have to decide just how deep is our faith in a higher being and in a greater good. At some point — hopefully before there is no longer a recognizable Ukraine — we have to face our fears of nuclear confrontation with what may be a crazy Russian leader, and demand that he cease his inglorious quest.
I have feared nuclear annihilation ever since I watched Nikita Khrushchev and John F. Kennedy square off during the Cuban Missile Crisis.
And I continue to have a healthy respect for what can result from even a tiny miscalculation.
But at some point, our fears must be tempered by our faith. Whatever we believe in, we must certainly believe in our responsibility to our fellow human beings.
It is at times like this that Christians ask the question : “What would Jesus do?” As a Jewish man celebrating our deliverance from bondage, I join my Christian friends and ask the same question.
I think we already know the answer.
Brian Greenspun is editor, publisher and owner of the Sun.