Blessed… Whose Wife Will She Be?

That same day Sadducees, who deny that there is a resurrection, came to Jesus. They asked, “Teacher, Moses said, If a man who doesn’t have children dies, his brother must marry his wife and produce children for his brother. Now there were seven brothers among us. The first one married, then died. Because he had no children he left his widow to his brother. The same thing happened with the second brother and the third, and in fact with all seven brothers. Finally, the woman died. At the resurrection, which of the seven brothers will be her husband? They were all married to her.” Jesus responded, “You are wrong because you don’t know either the scriptures or God’s power.  At the resurrection people won’t marry nor will they be given in marriage. Instead, they will be like angels from God.  As for the resurrection of the dead, haven’t you read what God told you, I’m the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? He isn’t the God of the dead but of the living.” Now when the crowd heard this, they were astonished at his teaching (Matthew 22:23-33, Common English Bible).

When I read the lesson for today I can actually place the Sheldon Cooper character The Big Bang Theory into the dialogue. In one episode Sheldon is having a minor argument with Leonard and he accuses Leonard of engaging in “reductio ad absurdum.” He goes on to explain that “reductio ad absurdum” is “the logical fallacy of extending someone’s argument to ridiculous proportions and then criticizing the result.”

It is my first thought when I read the Sadducees and asked Jesus their “question.” Why would it be necessary for the now dead man to have seven brothers, all of whom died in order to make their point. Had the man married and died and his brother married his wife in order to continue the family name, wouldn’t the same question, “whose wife will she be in the resurrection?” still apply but not on such a larger, ridiculous scale? I can’t help but think so.

I can’t help but think that the Sadducees engaged in”reductio ad absurdum” in an effort to make their point that the resurrection was in itself  a logical fallacy extended to ridiculous proportions. They were wrong. They still didn’t get it. Many today are the same way.

The idea of a resurrection to come is an idea of hope. I can’t speak for others, but I need that hope in my life. I believe in a good and loving God who is at work building relationships with human creatures for an eternity that will be filled and alive in a much different way that what we experience in this life.

I look around me, I watch the evening news, I hear and see a great deal of evil in the world around me. To know that there is a resurrection where God, who Scripture tells us is love, is in full control, is an assurance I need in my life. When I see evil in the world, I believe that something much better will one day be a reality for you and me.

As far as the idea of who my wife will be in the resurrection, today I hope I will have some kind of relationship with Cindy. That being said, in my understanding of the life to come, we will be filled with so much joy and love, other things just won’t be so important.

I feel sorry for people, then and now, who believe as the Saducees did. How discouraging it must be, when in the face of evil, there is a central belief that there is no hope of better days coming. That just might be the height of sad. I can’t help but think, we all want something better.

What do you expect to see in the days of the resurrection?

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

Joy and Thanksgiving,

Copyright 2017, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved



Spirita Spiro (Esperanza for "Spirit's Breath) is rather new in my life. But the blog is not. I began writing a blog several years ago. It lived under the title, "The Pastor Ponders." Over the years I have tried several different names and "The Pastor Ponders" always seemed to fit best. I am trying again with Spirita Spiro. For 27 years I was a full-time pastor in the United Methodist Church. This year, August 2018, I semi-retired (I can't actually retire quite yet) and began teaching social studies. It is something I have always wanted to do and if I was going to do this, I needed to make it sooner rather than later. So, I made the move. I thought with the career change there also needed to be a name change to the blog and other things, such as spiritual direction. Spirita Spiro is my attempt to share some of my thoughts. I often share what I am thinking with my dog "Bishop," but he keeps his thoughts to himself. He will even go to sleep sometimes while I am sharing my thoughts with him. The truth is, if it doesn't involve getting his ears scratched, his belly rubbed or some kind of treat, he really doesn't care. I will say this for him, he never argues with me or tells me I am wrong. So, I decided to share some of my thoughts with whoever might come across this blog in their ramblings around the Internet. I live with my wife Cindy and our little dog in Lufkin, Texas. I spent the past 27 years as a full-time United Methodist pastor. Most recently I served as pastor of First United Methodist Church in Sweeny, Texas. I have also served United Methodist congregations throughout East Texas including rural Madison County (Elwood UMC), Lovelady (First UMC) and Kennard (Center Hill UMC), Canton (First UMC), rural Smith County (Mt. Sylvan UMC and Union Chapel UMC), Grapeland (First UMC), Tyler (Pleasant Retreat UMC), Santa Fe (Aldersgate UMC), Freeport (First UMC) and Oyster Creek (Oyster Creek UMC), Diboll (First UMC), and now Sweeny (First UMC). My wife Cindy and I have been married for over 40 years. We have two grown sons. Wayne and his wife Nikki and all our grandsons (Kaleb, Noah, and Jaxon) live in Southern California. Christopher and his wife Morgan and both our granddaughters (Jenna and Natalie) live in Tyler Texas. I enjoy preaching and all aspects of preaching from research to writing to the actual preaching event. I also love writing, reading, playing the guitar as well as a bit of drawing. I have spent quite a bit of time over the past two years working with paracord on various projects, mostly prayer ropes I usually give away. I sing bass with a local barbershop chorus called The Coastalaires. I have also recently begun doing a little wood carving. I also enjoy playing with Bishop, something he likes a great deal better than listening to my thoughts. I hold an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Business Data Processing, specializing in Microcomputers from San Jacinto College in Pasadena, Texas, a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a minor in History from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, a Master of Divinity from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX and a Doctor of Ministry from Carolina University of Theology. When I was a student at Carolina, the school was in Iron Station North Carolina. They have since relocated to Manassas Virginia (Yeah, go figure, a school named Carolina geographically in Virginia). This blog is mostly devotional writing, but there are other things here too. Just about every week I will either post my sermon manuscript or a video of the worship service. On occasion, I will post something I see in society. Occasionally I write a short story, a poem, or a song and will post it here too. I will say this, my motivations for writing this blog are really selfish. I write it to get what I am thinking out of my head and onto something a bit more permanent. They say, after all, once something is on the internet it never really goes away. Still, I hope you enjoy reading it. And, should you desire, you can one-up Bishop and actually tell me what you think. Who knows, it might generate a bit of discussion between you and me and anyone else who might make their way here. With Joy and Thankfulness, Keith Sweeny, Texas May 2018

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