Daily D – Luke 20:37-38
“Moses even indicated in the passage about the burning bush that the dead are raised, where he calls the Lord the God of Abraham and the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob. He is not the God of the dead but of the living, because all are living to him.”
LUKE 20:37-38 (CSB)
I was the Baptist preacher for a small, country church when I was in college. The church also had a Presbyterian preacher. Two Sundays a month, they were Baptist. The other two Sundays, they were Presbyterian. On fifth Sundays, they stayed home.
This church was known for having the neatest, tidiest, most well-cared-for cemetery in that part of Texas. I spent some time one day capturing photos of the church building and grounds.
An old gentleman happened to be working in the graveyard that day. It was summertime and yet he was covered from head to toe to protect against the sun. He wore a broad-brimmed hat, gloves, long-sleeve shirt, overalls, and boots. You cannot see one spot of skin in the photo. All you can see are the angles of the tilt of his head, his hands and arms working the hoe with precision in eradicating unwelcome weeds.
It really is a pretty cemetery.
In the story today’s text comes from, there is a debate about whether there is any such thing as the resurrection of the dead. One group of religious leaders said Yes. The other said No. A test case was presented to Jesus. He pointed out the flaw in their thinking. God is. He is the Eternally-Present One. We are. We are here for a while and then we return to the dust.
As Moses prayed in Psalm 90:12, “Teach us to number our days carefully so that we may develop wisdom in our hearts.” When we die, we do not disappear forever. We are alive with God or apart from him.
No doubt the debate raged on after Jesus spoke the truth. A few days later, come Sunday morning just after dawn, Pharisees and Sadducees would discover that what Jesus said was true. Resurrection happens. Jesus is the Resurrection and the Life (John 11:25).
Our Father in heaven is not carefully tending a cemetery. He is not the master crypt keeper. He is the giver of life. He offers each of us an eternal kind of life. We will be with him forever in all his loving goodness or apart from him stripped of anything considered good away from him. Join Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Jesus by receiving God’s good gift today.
I will only visit cemeteries.
Our Father, you have made heaven our home. You have prepared a place for each of us. You will receive us to yourself and we will be with you forever. Thank you for making that way home possible through faith in Jesus. Amen.
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Psalm 139:17, 18 How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered! I can’t even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand! And when I wake up, you are still with me!
2 Corinthians 5:1-5 For we know that when this earthly tent we live in is taken down (that is, when we die and leave this earthly body), we will have a house in heaven, an eternal body made for us by God himself and not by human hands. We grow weary in our present bodies, and we long to put on our heavenly bodies like new clothing. For we will put on heavenly bodies; we will not be spirits without bodies. While we live in these earthly bodies, we groan and sigh, but it’s not that we want to die and get rid of these bodies that clothe us. Rather, we want to put on our new bodies so that these dying bodies will be swallowed up by life. God himself has prepared us for this, and as a guarantee he has given us his Holy Spirit.
1 Corinthians 10:13 The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.