The Second Wave

Matthew 22:23-33

The stage has been set for the second wave of the Jewish leaders plot to unfold. The second assault team, this time made up of a group of Sadducees, makes their advance on Jesus.

The Sadducees were a rival group to the Pharisees, they were an aristocratic bunch, in high favor with the wealthy, and Jesus was a clear threat to their high and lofty status in the land. Their attack centers upon the issue of the resurrection of the dead, something the Sadducees do not believe in.

They give Jesus their example of seven brothers, all of whom end up being married to the same woman, as each dies in succession without producing an heir. This is a reference to Deut. 25:5-6 and Lev. 38:8 which directs that when a man is married and dies without a child to be his heir, his brother must marry his widow and produce an heir for his dead brother. The premise of their question is that after the resurrection (that they don’t believe in) people remain married in the afterlife, and as it turns out, this is an entirely false premise.

Jesus tells them that “you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God”  He goes on to explain their misunderstanding of the power of God as He tells them about the complete transformation of people in the afterlife as they become “like the angels” in heaven with no further need for procreation. Then He demonstrates their lack of knowledge of the Scriptures in an interesting way, using an example from Exodus.

Citing Exodus 3:6 where God reveals Himself as “the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob” Jesus points out that these three men were centuries in the grave, while God spoke of them as though they were still very much alive, and drives His point home by saying “He is not the God of the dead but of the living.”. It would seem that the extreme materialism of the Sadducees had blinded them to the truth contained in the Scriptures.

Matthew doesn’t record the reaction of the Sadducees, but the crowd was “amazed” at his teaching.

And the second wave of the assault fell back in defeat; the third wave assault team, this time comprised of Pharisees made ready to advance…

About Don Merritt

A long time teacher and writer, Don hopes to share his varied life's experiences in a different way with a Christian perspective.
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9 Responses to The Second Wave

  1. Wally Fry says: the imagery of an assault team Don!

  2. Reblogged this on Re-theologizing and commented:
    A paradigm shift on marriage

  3. Matt Brumage says:

    I’ve wanted to “poke” that passage for some time. In Aramaic, like Hebrew, there are two verb tenses: complete or incomplete. The hinge-pin in Jesus’ argument is that Yahweh said that He IS, rather than ‘was’ the God of the Patriarchs. When I look at it that way (God’s being in relationship as incomplete) there are so many lessons I see. Beyond resurrection, I see my own life now as “incomplete” with my Master. There’s so much more, but one day, when I stand before Him, I will be even more aware, as the Patriarchs were, that even then I won’t be complete. He’s THAT infinite!

    • Don Merritt says:

      That is so true; it makes my little brain turn to mush when i try to comprehend His infinite nature as opposed to my finite nature. But then I think how much more awesome it is that He takes any particular notice of any of us.

  4. Pingback: What is discernment? | Just me being curious

  5. bcaudle77 says:

    Its crazy to see the all the time and process that was put into trying to get Jesus out of the way, the tried hard, very hard to say the least.

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