Mark 12:18 Some Sadducees, who say there is no resurrection, came to him and asked him a question, saying, 19 “Teacher, Moses wrote for us that if a man’s brother dies, leaving a wife but no child, the man shall marry the widow and raise up children for his brother. 20 There were seven brothers; the first married and, when he died, left no children; 21 and the second married the widow and died, leaving no children; and the third likewise; 22 none of the seven left children. Last of all the woman herself died. 23 In the resurrection whose wife will she be? For the seven had married her.” 24 Jesus said to them, “Is not this the reason you are wrong, that you know neither the scriptures nor the power of God? 25 For when they rise from the dead, they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven. 26 And as for the dead being raised, have you not read in the book of Moses, in the story about the bush, how God said to him, ‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob’? 27 He is God not of the dead, but of the living; you are quite wrong.”
This is a ridiculous question given in a vain attempt to trick Jesus into saying something controversial, or to trip him up mentally and get him to admit there is no resurrection in the life to come. Neither of these outcomes is what happens. What sticks out for me this morning is v.25 “For when they rise from the dead they neither marry or are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven.”
This verse seems to indicate that when we rise from the dead we will have a different physical form than what we’ve had in this life. We will be “like angels”. Does this mean we’ll have wings? I believe I’ve seen angels a few times in my lifetime, but they weren’t all the same. They were different sizes and had different purposes. I’ve seen warring angels (large, fierce). I’ve seen guardian angels (also large). I’ve seen the heavenly host singing in worship (similar to the pic, fairly small but LOTS of them). Again, not all had the same appearance and not all had the same purpose.
Even more interesting to me is the question of post-resurrection relationships. Will we see the people we love in the next life? If so, will we enjoy the same kind of relationship with them, or will it be different? If we’re in the presence of God, will it matter? So many questions and, frankly, few clear answers for us in scripture. That said, of this I’m fairly certain – we will enjoy complete fellowship with God and that fellowship will be eternal. Thanks be to God for the promise of eternal life. Amen.