“Jesus replied, Marriage is for people here on earth. But in the age to come, those worthy of being raised from the dead will neither marry nor be given in marriage. And they will never die again. In this respect they will be like angels. They are children of God and children of the resurrection” (Luke 20:34-37, NLT).
The Sadducees were a branch of Judaism that did not believe in the resurrection of the dead. To refute the doctrine of the resurrection of the dead, they posed an ad absurdum argument to Jesus regarding a woman widowed seven times.
But the rebuttal of Jesus proved to the Sadducees the absurdity of their own argument (vs. 40).
Jesus first discredited their argument about marriage in heaven. He said that resurrected people are immortal like the angels and so there is no need for marriage in heaven (vs. 36). (Jesus does not say that resurrected people become angels, but that they are like angels.)
According to Jesus, marriage is an accommodation for this earthly life. God instituted marriage and the family as a way for mortal people to enjoy His promises and blessings during their life on earth in this present age.
But in the age to come, marriage is not necessary because resurrected people, like angels, are immortal and will themselves dwell in the very presence of God.
Next, Jesus turned to the larger question concerning the resurrection. Jesus used the books of Moses, Genesis-Deuteronomy, which were the only scriptures the Sadducees recognized as authoritative, to prove the resurrection.
Jesus pointed out to the Sadducees that when Moses referred to God as the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob long after these patriarchs had died (Exodus 3:6), Moses was indicating that God was still their God and, therefore, they must have a continuing existence after their deaths.
Like the patriarchs, we have received God’s promise of eternal life.
We have been set free from the life of sin and death by Christ. His resurrection life is now at work in our mortal lives through the transforming power of the Holy Spirit allowing us to start living for eternity in this present life.
“For when the trumpet sounds, those who have died will be raised to live forever…For our dying bodies must be transformed into bodies that will never die, our mortal bodies must be transformed into immortal bodies” (I Corinthians 15:52-53, NLT).