The Sadducees spent their lives debating the doctrine of resurrection; they were sad, you see because physical death was the end of the life line for them. The answer to their question "Whose wife was she who had buried seven husbands who were all brothers?" summarized their unbelief. For them confusion accompanies the belief in the resurrection so they chose to discard the belief altogether. It is natural, therefore, for man to discard what he can't understand or what requires faith.
Is there life after death? Does it really matter? You bet!
Just as the fire that fell from heaven demonstrated God's acceptance of the special offerings of the Old Testament so the resurrection put God's "stamp of approval" on the life ministry and death of Jesus Christ.
- The resurrection proves that God has accepted Jesus' sacrificial death on my behalf.
- The resurrection of Jesus is the seal of His work and the assurance that we don't have to fear death.
Questions for today's Chronological Bible reading:
Mark 12:18-27; Matthew 22:23-33; Luke 20:27-40
- Read Deuteronomy 25:5-10 describing the "Levirate Marriage Law" to get a context for the Sadducees' controversy.
- Genesis 38 describes this "Levirate Marriage Law" actually carried out.
- What does Jesus interpret their question regarding the resurrection?
- What Scripture does God use to correct their faulty understanding?
- What does the teacher's response to Jesus' answer to his question reveal to you about love for God?
- What attributes of love for God do the Pharisees insist upon?
- How does this parable illustrate the love for God?
- How does the response of the religious leaders differ from that of the Samaritan?
- What question does Jesus use to "stump" the teachers of the law?
- What is He teaching them about the Messiah?
- How does this narrative fit in with what Jesus has been teaching about those who love God?
- What drives the religious activity of the Pharisees?
- How does Jesus describe the Pharisees in the list of the seven condemning "woes" given?
- Why does Jesus warn His disciples about the Pharisees?
Ask the Lord to make you aware of when you play "religious dress-up" so that others will think well of you.