The Significance of Holy Week

April 07, 2014

As Christians celebrate Holy Week, many outside the church may wonder what the events commemorating the life of Jesus this week are all about. Dr. David Croteau, professor of New Testament and Greek at Columbia International University says Jesus Christ is unique from other religious leaders and teachers and the events celebrated during Holy Week especially bear that out.  

Croteau says the Holy Week story actually goes back the very first chapters of the Bible when the first man, Adam, became separated from God through his disobedience and that stain of sin was passed down to all his descendents, including “every human being alive today.”  

“But Christians put their trust in the God of the Bible who sent His very own Son, Jesus, to die for our sins, paying a debt we could never pay, and then God raised Him from the dead,” Croteau said. “This is the loving, gracious God of Scripture.

And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John 1:14)

Good Friday is the day that Christians solemnly reflect on the crucifixion of Jesus, a death that Croteau says was necessary.   

“In order for our relationship with God to be reconciled, the sin has to be paid for,” Croteau said. “This is what Jesus did on the cross: pay the penalty for the sin of those who would place their faith in Him.”

Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, 19 namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation. (2 Corinthians 5:18-19)

Croteau says Easter Sunday, also called Resurrection Sunday by some, is the pinnacle of God’s redemptive plan. 

“Without the resurrection, the Christian's faith is in vain because our sins would not have been forgiven,” Croteau said. “When the Father raised Jesus from the dead, he affirmed all that His Son did and confirmed His message as true and faithful. Jesus' resurrection is the picture of new life that all who believe in Him have, and restores fellowship with God forever.”

And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is worthless; you are still in your sins. (1 Cor. 15:17)

Croteau explained the significance of Holy Week on WIS TV in Columbia. See his interview with Dawndy Mercer Plank at:

and the audience response to Easter at: