The bible is definitely not escape literature! On the contrary, it painstakingly characterizes the dark and light of real life… 2 Samuel is real life at its grittiest. We see David go from valiant to broken and his kingdom go from strong to divided. Today’s reading starts with an undercurrent of rivalry between Israel (the northern tribes) and Judah to the south… and ends with the gory details of Joab murdering Amasa.
This is the world we live in. A world filled with terrorist bombers and extreme poverty. A world where governments murder refugees and starvation abounds. It’s ugly. The bible doesn’t ignore the harsh reality of life in this world.
But in the midst of the ugliness, Jesus offers hope.
Today’s reading from Luke 20 finds Jesus in the middle of Passion Week – and the religious leaders are trying to trap him into saying something to incriminate himself. They think they are so clever, but it’s impossible to outwit Jesus! And right in the middle of Jesus’ answer to the Sadducees is a nugget of hope!
Jesus teaches that the Patriarchs of the faith – Abraham, Isaac and David – are not dead – but alive with God, “for they cannot die anymore, because they are equal to angels and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection (Luke 20:36).
This world is not our final destination! Just like Abraham, Isaac and David, we are bound for resurrection after death – so that we might live in the new heaven and the new earth in perfect communion with God.
In other words, we need an eternal perspective to persevere through the mire of this life. Our eyes must be focused to the future – where there will be no more pain and no more sorrow and no more death… only life eternal that will never be marred by sin!