When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written: "Death is swallowed up in victory."
Starting from the sixteenth of Nissan, the day after the Passover Sabbath, we are asked to count seven weeks and one day, fifty days, until Pentecost (Lev. 23:15). On the fortieth day of this counting the Messiah ascended in the cloud in the plain view of the disciples. They were at the same moment told that as He went in the cloud, so will He return (Acts 1:11). As believers this period between the resurrection and the ascension is very special. It is the period when we are told that the Messiah made all His resurrected appearances up to five hundred disciples plus (1 Cor. 15:6).
This fifty days period is called in Hebrew s’phirat ha’omer העומר פירתס, meaning, the Counting of the Omer. It could also mean, the Recounting of the Omer,as if it were a story to be told, or even the Shining of the Omer as in cleaning. I would say that all these translations are correct in their own rights. As we count the days of the Omer, we can tell the stories of the appearances of the risen Messiah, thus shining and preparing our souls for the great day of Pentecost when in the similitude of Mt. Horeb’s events, through earthquake, wind, and fire, the Torah was sealed in the disciples hearts 2,000 years ago (Acts 2).
I would even say that remembering the resurrection is vital to our faith. Up to the time of the resurrection the disciples were weak in their faith. Many of those also who had previously believed in him because of the signs and the miracles were easily swayed by the tide of prevailing public opinion. What sealed the deal for Israel was the resurrection. After the resurrection, the whole city of Jerusalem was filled with believers who had become quite a force and even a positive element in Israel until such a time when persecution started again under Herod Antipas (Acts 12) and the wicked High-Priest who executed James (Josephus). It is during that time that the Letter to the Hebrews was written encouraging the Jewish believers of Israel by telling them that even though things below looked bleak, they could comfort themselves and each other with the reality which is from above. Still a good advice for today!
This belief in the resurrection is the corner stone of our belief system. It is this very same belief that made innocent victimized Job say, "I know that my redeemer lives" (Job 19:25). It is also the same belief that that brought Abraham to the mountain in the face of an insurmountable trial (Heb. 11:17-19). Many people dare to challenge the authenticity of the apostolic texts, but their biggest vindication is the historically proven cruel martyrdom of each of the disciples who saw the resurrected Messiah. People can’t go through do that unless they are being told to deny something that they have witnessed to be real.
Even today as the world gets darker, it is that same faith in the resurrected ne that needs to be our beacon of light, hope, and faith, in the face of the seeming irrationalities life seems to deal us. Telling the stories of the resurrected one, particularly of the events surrounding his various apparitions during the Counting of the Omer, should give a shine to our faith and the assurance that even though death may seem prevalent, he has resurrected so that through his resurrection, corruption and death puts on incorruptibility.