Saturday, August 27, 2016

Luke 20:34-40

Luke 20:34-40
And Jesus said to them, “The sons of this era marry and are being given in marriage.  And the ones who are being considered worthy to obtain that era and the resurrection out of the dead neither marry nor are being given in marriage.  For they are not powerful enough to die: for they are similar to angels, they are sons of God, while being sons of the resurrection.  And regarding the dead being raised, even Moses showed by the bush as he says, ‘the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.’  And God is not among the dead but living.  For all live by him.”  Answering, some of the scribes said, “Teacher, you spoke well.”  For no longer were they making up their mind to interrogate him about anything.

Thoughts for Today

First Thought:

Jesus handles the Sadducees on many levels.  On the first level, Jesus talks about marriage.  He puts marriage in perspective.  Marriage is a thing of this world.  It’s not a bad thing mind you.  Jesus doesn’t say that we should not get married.  However, it is a thing of this world.  He does say that in the era to come there will not be any marriage.  There isn’t really any point to marriage in heaven.  After all, we will dwell with God.  We will be in the presence of God.  The Father will be our primary focus, not some other human being.  To be concerned about marriage in the eternal demonstrates that we don’t really understand what eternal life will be about or even be like.  Jesus is teaching us how little we understand and how easy it is for all of us to let what we don’t understand blind our perspective.

Do you ever get the wrong perspective because of a lack of understanding?  How often are you concerned about marriage in the afterlife?  Why is it easy for us to think about such a thing?  How does it show a human understanding of the eternal?

Second Thought:

Notice that Jesus teaches about more than marriage.  Jesus knows the hearts and the teaching of the Sadducees.  He knows that they do not believe in the resurrection at all.  This is the far more troubling issue for Jesus.  You will notice that when Jesus challenges the Sadducees on this topic that He brings scripture into the mix.  Jesus reminds them that when Moses is at the burning bush, God is spoken of as the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.  These are people who were dead hundreds of years prior to Moses.  If there was no resurrection, then what importance would they have?  But if there is a resurrection, then God can indeed be the God of people who are known to have died hundreds of years prior.

Why is it important to you that the resurrection be a real concept, something in our future to which we can look forward?  What does it say to us that Jesus seems to be more concerned that the Sadducees learn God’s truth about the resurrection than to have the right perspective on marriage?

Third Thought:

Jesus’ words convince many to leave Him alone.  However, don’t think that this means Jesus swayed their opinion.  While we can say that He won from a divine perspective, we cannot conclude that Jesus won from a human perspective.  Remember that the religious leaders still plot against Him in order to kill Him.  The Sadducees simply realize that it is futile to talk to Him because Jesus will not capitulate.  They decide to leave Him and not draw this out any further.  Certainly Jesus impresses some of them.  Certainly some genuinely believe that Jesus’ teaching is powerful.  But the reality is that Jesus is still crucified according to God’s plan and under the full will of His enemies.

Have you ever confused being left alone with winning?  Why is it important at this moment to understand that winning is not really as important as God’s will being done?

Passage for Tomorrow: Luke 20:41-44
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