I'm having a bad hare day. I thought I'd pull a few rabbits out of a hat by surprising some church members with chocolate bunnies, but my hares wouldn't cooperate. It's as if they didn't want to be seen in Jesus saves hats, next to Jesus Saves t-shirts or even in close proximity to items lifting up Jesus Christ as the Savior of the world. Then I asked myself, what do rabbits have to do with Easter anyway?I did a little investigating. Here is a short answer from answers.com:
When Christianity began to spread, one way of getting pagans to accept the newest religion was to overlap Christian values and ideas with current and much loved pagan customs, to attract the locals to the church and pull them away from their long practised ways of honoring and living with nature. The Easter Bunny and Egg hunts are two such carryovers that, in the beginning, had nothing to do with the Christian faith or belief in Jesus' resurrection. But these pagan ideas helped those wandering priests to get the attention of the pagans they sought to convert. Pagans around Europe loved their goddesses and symbols of life that they understood much more clearly than the Bible, which was not readily available to the common people anyway. Incorporating these pagan practices was discovered to be a key ingredient to bring more people under the church, and it made Christianity itself more acceptable. After all, the most successful missionaries are those who seek to understand the people they wish to convert by living their life without compromising anyone's beliefs. Because the Christian church celebrates the Resurrection of Christ in the spring, it made sense to them to "borrow" from Pagan Spring rites in order to make the attraction to the newer religion plausible.
The short answer is: Rabbits (and eggs) have come to be seen as symbols of new life and rebirth, and the Christian celebration of Easter is all about new life, because of Christ's resurrection, and the new life He bought for us.
Remember, it is not Mohammad, Buddha, Confucius, nor Easter Rabbits that save. Jesus saves!