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Mar 7 / Chuck Smith, Jr.

Day Sixty-eight – Matthew 22:23-33

Draw near to God and He will draw near to you

But Jesus answered and said to them, “You are mistaken, not understanding the Scriptures nor the power of God.” Matthew 22:29

The logic behind the Sadducees’ question was flawed. In the legal clause they cited, a younger brother was responsible to provide an heir for his deceased older brother in order to keep his name alive (De. 24:5-6). This was a legal arrangement made on behalf of the older brother and did not preclude the younger brother from marrying a woman of his choice and raising children in his own name. Therefore, if the older brother and the woman were reunited in resurrection, she would be his wife as before.

Jesus, however, sidestepped the technicalities of the law and said something unexpected and unknown: Resurrected people do not marry (v. 30). The most intimate relationship between humans on earth does not exist in heaven. Could this have something to do with the church’s marriage to Jesus? (2 Cor. 11:2; Ep. 5:25-33; Rev. 19:7-9).

There were two reasons why the Sadducees were mistaken regarding the resurrection: First, they did not understand the Scriptures and, second, they did not understand the power of God. Where do the Hebrew Scriptures teach the resurrection? Jesus pointed to a reference we may have read a hundred times and yet never seen resurrection in it. At the burning bush, God identified himself to Moses as the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob–the three patriarchs of Israel who had died in the world yet still lived in God.

The criterion for resurrection is relational! Those who belong to God continue to live in him. This is the very purpose for Christ’s coming (Jn. 3:16).

Thank You, Lord Jesus, for setting the Sadducees straight. As for us, we do not want to be mistaken regarding the Scriptures and the power of God. We do not want to have a lot of information about our Father but no experience. We want to know His power as well as His word. So, please, set us straight too.

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