The Resurrection and Marriage
27Some of the Sadducees, who say there is no resurrection, came to Jesus with a question. 28“Teacher,” they said, “Moses wrote for us that if a man’s brother dies and leaves a wife but no children, the man must marry the widow and have children for his brother. 29Now there were seven brothers. The first one married a woman and died childless. 30The second 31and then the third married her, and in the same way the seven died, leaving no children. 32Finally, the woman died too. 33Now then, at the resurrection whose wife will she be, since the seven were married to her?”
34Jesus replied, “The people of this age marry and are given in marriage. 35But those who are considered worthy of taking part in that age and in the resurrection from the dead will neither marry nor be given in marriage, 36and they can no longer die; for they are like the angels. They are God’s children, since they are children of the resurrection. 37But in the account of the bush, even Moses showed that the dead rise, for he calls the Lord ‘the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.’[a] 38He is not the God of the dead, but of the living, for to him all are alive.”
39Some of the teachers of the law responded, “Well said, teacher!” 40And no one dared to ask him any more questions.
As I look this over and see the Sadducees trying to trap Jesus in their paradox, it’s funny how off their perspective was. This wasn’t just an issue of resurrection or not. It wasn’t even an issue of marriage. Their whole concept of life and God was flawed. They were looking at things from an earthly point of view. They didn’t even believe in anything else beyond this. Not something physical, anyway. Not an entire kingdom beyond this world. They are so small-minded.
Jesus responds not just by arguing the point of resurrection, but also showing that there is a perspective on reality that God has always had, and the Sadducees had missed it. Their problem is not just whether they believe in the resurrection or not, but whether they believe in the kingdom of God. The reign of God in this world, by reigning the hearts and minds of His followers, is something that requires an entirely different perspective to understand. We must alter our view of reality, and see things from God’s perspective, not just merely include some “God stuff” in our current view.
From God’s view, this world is temporary. From God’s view, this world is broken. From God’s view, His Son has come to take our place and guarantee our citizenship in the kingdom. He has paid the penalties for our brokenness, and in that we are ushered in to the kingdom. And, even better, we are ushered into a relationship with the Living God, our Father. In our Father’s presence, sickness, sorrow, misery, sin, death; these are all non-issues, non-existent. Because they come from a lack of the presence of God’s love and righteousness.
But all of our ideas of good and fun and self-righteousness and religion go away in the kingdom, too. Because, as Paul said, “Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face.” (1 Corinthians 13:12 NIV) And what is Paul talking about, but the kingdom of heaven? In the kingdom all things, even marriage will pass away, and there will be a new reality, a new set of rules that is so much more perfect, more good, more whole than anything we can even imagine in the midst of the broken world in which we reside for now.
“Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.” (Matthew 6:10 KJV)
When we get fully out of the way, and let God reign completely, we begin to see what that kingdom looks like. Let us get out of our own way, and let God reign. Let His will be done on earth, as it is in heaven.
Be in Christ.