Resurrection of the Dead…

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Scripture: Luke 20:27 Some Sadducees, those who say there is no resurrection, came to (Jesus) 28 and asked him a question, “Teacher, Moses wrote for us that if a man’s brother dies, leaving a wife but no children, the man shall marry the widow and raise up children for his brother. 29 Now there were seven brothers; the first married, and died childless; 30 then the second 31 and the third married her, and so in the same way all seven died childless. 32 Finally the woman also died. 33 In the resurrection, therefore, whose wife will the woman be? For the seven had married her.” 34 Jesus said to them, “Those who belong to this age marry and are given in marriage; 35 but those who are considered worthy of a place in that age and in the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage. 36 Indeed they cannot die anymore, because they are like angels and are children of God, being children of the resurrection…”

Observation: Again, people ask Jesus a trick question to trip him up in public. As it says in verse 27, the Sadducees did not believe in a resurrection of the dead. They ask Jesus this question to point out the potential problems with a physical resurrection. If a woman had seven mortal husbands (highly unlikely but not impossible) it could cause confusion if they are all raised from the dead. She can’t be everyone’s wife – even if they are brothers. But Jesus challenges their assumptions of a physical resurrection. Those who will be raised from the dead will be “like angels”. Angels are not physical beings. They are spiritual beings who serve at God’s pleasure. So will we be one day. Questions about marriage will be irrelevant.

Application: It’s hard to tell from reading the bible if at the resurrection of the dead we will be raised body and soul, or simply soul. There seems to be evidence for both depending on where you look. I’m inclined to believe the latter. The bible tells us what we already know – that our physical bodies are wasting away a little every day – at least after about age 30. If we are raised from the dead as flesh and bone, which version of us will be raised? Will it be as we were as a child? Or a teenager? Or in our physical prime as a younger adult? Or perhaps, at least visibly, as we were the day we died – but healthy? A resurrection limited to our spiritual nature takes the issue out of play.

Question: If we will be raised in both body and spirit, which version of you (based on age) would you prefer? (Not that you’ll be asked to choose, but it’s an interesting question) I’m thinking age 30 is about right for me, but you may have a different idea in mind. Let’s pray.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, there are many questions we cannot answer on this side of glory. I don’t know exactly what our resurrection will look like; whether it will be both body and soul or simply soul. That said, as long as we are with you and our Heavenly Father, I expect it won’t matter. Today we thank you for your willingness to go to the cross, and be raised from the dead, so that one day we will be raised up with you. We pray this in your holy name. Amen.

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