Mark 12:18-27 NASB
¹⁸Some Sadducees (who say that there is no resurrection) came to Jesus, and began questioning Him, saying,
¹⁹Teacher, Moses wrote for us that if a man’s brother dies and leaves behind a wife and leaves no child, his brother should marry the wife and raise up children to his brother.
²⁰There were seven brothers; and the first took a wife, and died leaving no children. ²¹The second one married her, and died leaving behind no children; and the third likewise; ²²and so all seven left no children. Last of all the woman died also.
²³In the resurrection, when they rise again, which one’s wife will she be? For all seven had married her.
²⁴Jesus said to them, “Is this not the reason you are mistaken, that you do not understand the Scriptures or the power of God? ²⁵For when they rise from the dead, they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven.
²⁶But regarding the fact that the dead rise again, have you not read in the book of Moses, in the passage about the burning bush, how God spoke to him, saying, ‘I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob’? ²⁷He is not the God of the dead, but of the living; you are greatly mistaken.”
Again we are confronted with a theological conversation, now about the future that the Lord has in mind for man and with the creation.
It makes a big difference whether questions about God’s actions arise from a desire to gain real spiritual insight or from a human curiosity and the need to argue.
Understanding God’s actions is a purely spiritual matter. To this end, the Lord created us humans as spirit beings (Genesis 1:26,27; James 4:5).
Deuteronomy 5:5-10 states that if a man died childless, his brother could take the widow to wife and father offspring, so that there would still be an heir. The first child born of such a brother-in-law marriage was the deceased’s legal heir. This is how God wanted to protect the woman and the family possessions (Compare: Ruth 3:1-14, 4:1-13).
The Sadducees now use this law to provoke Jesus into a discussion about the resurrection of the dead. They themselves do not believe in this resurrection. They make a rather ridiculous situation here (Mark 12:20-23). They reason from the limited mind of man and not from faith in the omnipotence of the Lord, the Eternal God.
Jesus rightly assumes God’s omnipotence and his hidden possibilities and his grand future (Mark 12:24).
In Acts 3:21 Peter speaks of “the restoration of all things,” which includes our resurrection: at Jesus’ return, the order disturbed by sin will be restored.
Regarding that future of God, Peter says in 2 Peter 3:13: “But according to his promise we look for new heavens and a new earth, where righteousness dwells.” It is a privilege to know and look forward to that new reality, where everything will be redeemed and new!
The Lord Jesus emphasizes that His Heavenly Father is the eternal and living God, who is not bound by time and place (Mark 12:25-27). He is supreme!
Question for self-reflection
▪︎ What does the Bible understand by ‘eternal life? (Compare John 17:3.)
▪︎ Thank the Lord that there is total salvation in your future too
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