Jesus taught his disciples that those who believed in him would be raised up by God after their death, to eternal life. This teaching seemed ridiculous to the Sadducees, so they tried to catch Jesus out with a ridiculous example. One woman has been married to seven brothers. Which one will be her husband when God raises them all up?
With his answer to the Sadducees, Jesus is not devaluing marriage. For those whom God calls to marriage and family life, it is a sacred calling and an essential part of who they are. But Jesus is teaching us that in God’s kingdom there will be no limits to the love that we experience. We will be fully alive and will experience a joy that is beyond anything that we can imagine in this life – even beyond the joys of marriage.
November is the month when we traditionally remember and pray for the dead. Today’s Gospel reminds us of our hope of resurrection and eternal life. This hope is based on the teaching of Christ; based on our faith that we are loved into being by God and held in existence every moment by a love that is stronger than death. Our God is God of the living and not of the dead.