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Children of the Resurrection
Thirty-Second Sunday In Ordinary Time
Some Sadducees, those who argue that there is no resurrection, approached him and they put this question to him, “Master, Moses prescribed for us, if a man’s married brother dies childless, the man must marry the widow to raise up children for his brother. Well then, there were seven brothers; the first, having married a wife, died childless. The second and then the third married the widow. And the same with all seven, they died leaving no children. Finally the woman herself died. Now, at the resurrection, whose wife will she be, since she had been married to all seven?” Jesus replied, “The children of this world take wives and husbands, but those who are judged worthy of a place in the other world and in the resurrection from the dead do not marry because they can no longer die, for they are the same as the angels, and being children of the resurrection they are children of God. And Moses himself implies that the dead rise again, in the passage about the bush where he calls the Lord the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. Now he is God, not of the dead, but of the living; for to him everyone is alive.”
Opening Prayer: Lord Jesus, increase my faith as a child of God. Grant that I may be a witness to others of the living God.
- To Be or Not to Be?: This past week we have read various Gospels in the daily Mass that have encouraged us to look at the deeper motives of our hearts as we face the final judgment and the ultimate consequences of our choices: eternal life or eternal damnation. Now the evangelist brings home the reality of eternal life by presenting the debate about the resurrection of the body. The Sadducees did not believe in the resurrection of the body and consequently, tried to trick Jesus into affirming a doctrine contrary to their own beliefs. But, as always, it backfired. Jesus cannot be played. He goes to the heart of who God is to offer an answer to their dilemma. God is the God of the living, and thus we are all called to participate in his very life.
- The Children of This World: Marriage, a primordial and sacramental means of loving union is a mere image of what we are called to in eternity. It represents the intimate union and eternal commitment of the living God to his beloved creation—the human person. Jesus says that they do not marry in the other world, signifying that marriage is a reflection and a means to a relationship with the living God. How do our marriages and earthly commitments reflect that goal? Are we sagacious in the way that we make the most of the paths that we have chosen in light of eternity?
- The Children of the Resurrection: It is a common doctrinal mistake for people to say that when we die we become angels. When Jesus says that we are the same as the angels, he means that we live as full persons in the afterlife. While angels are persons without bodies, however, we will be persons with our resurrected bodies. It is a mystery, but a truth revealed in Scriptures. One thing is certain: we remain children of God and we will be fully alive. This identity begins here on earth, through grace in baptism and through our participation in his life through our sacramental, spiritual, and moral lives. Let us rejoice now and act as children of our living God who calls us beyond the grave to eternal life.
Conversing with Christ: Lord Jesus, thank you for the gift of eternal life that you offer me. Help me to participate in your life here and now, so as to live the dignity and identity to which you call me as a child of God.
Resolution: Lord, today by your grace I will reflect on the spiritual means that I make the most of to live authentically as a child of God and resolve to renew or add a practice in earnest.
For Further Reflection: The Catholic Faith Explained: The Resurrection and Life Everlasting, by Charlie McKinney.
Jennifer Ristine is a consecrated woman of Regnum Christi dedicated to spiritual and faith formation through teaching, conferences, writing, and spiritual direction. While serving in Ancient Magdala she wrote Mary Magdalene: Insights from Ancient Magdala and “Nine Days with Mary Magdalene.”