God of the Living
Whether it’s Mormonism or Islam, when the one who has actually lived in heaven is ignored, then speculation about marriage in the eternal state and the resurrection runs rampant. When Jesus came to celebrate the Passover during the week of his crucifixion, the Sadducees held the power in the Temple and they denied the resurrection.
They thought their absurd exaggerated question would reveal the foolishness of believing in the hope of continued life after death and a bodily resurrection. They also only believed in the inspiration of the Pentateuch. So Jesus used the stunning revelation of God to Moses at the burning bush in Exodus to prove that they hadn’t read or tracked the implications of this confrontation between The I AM and their great founding prophet.
“Now some of the Sadducees, the Jewish sect that didn’t believe in the resurrection, came to Jesus and were questioning him. ‘Teacher, Moses wrote to us that if a man died and left behind a wife, but did not leave a child, his brother was to take her as his wife and raise up seed for his brother. There were seven brothers, and the first took a wife and then died without leaving seed. The second brother took her as his wife, and died, and like his brother left no seed. The third brother did the same, and each in turn to the seventh brother. He also died without leaving a seed. Finally, the woman died. So in the resurrection whose wife will she be for all of them had her as a wife?’
Jesus answered, ‘Are you not lead astray because you don’t know the inspired Scriptures, nor the power of God. For whenever the dead will be raised, they will not marry or be given in marriage. Instead, they will be like the angels in heaven. Now concerning the question about whether or not the dead will rise—have you not read in the book of Moses in the account of the bush how God said to him, ‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living. You are badly mistaken!” Mark 12:18-27
It’s a serious thing when the religious leaders who controlled the Temple worship in Jerusalem denied the hope of the resurrection. Their absurd illustration was intended to make Jesus’ teaching on the resurrection seem foolish, but instead, they were the fools. They had with them the one man who could call heaven home, and instead of listening, they arrogantly held firm to their denial of life after death.
Their unbelief blasphemed God’s power to give life. Their patriarchs were still living when God appeared to Moses at the burning bush and in the Transfiguration, we were given evidence that both Elijah and Moses were still alive. The issue for each of us is not whether or not we will rise, but will we rise and join God’s household? That’s why it’s important for each of us to nail down our commitment to Jesus.
LORD, pour life into all of our churches, our ministries, our families, and our relationships. Help us strongly resist spiritual deadness. The resurrection hope is too precious not to share. Protect us from false teachers like the Sadducees.
For more from Dave Wyrtzen please visit TruthEncounter.com!