Children of the Resurrection
Given that this Sunday is Remembrance Sunday it’s very appropriate that our scripture readings are about our faith in the afterlife. As we approach the end of the year before Advent begins, the Church encourages us to think about our final destiny, about how we will spend eternity. For the most part the Jewish people of the Old Testament had very little awareness of the afterlife. As God’s chosen people they believed they would instead live on and flourish through their children and the generations to follow. However, Jesus was different. He was speaking confidently about resurrection and new life. The Sadducees of Jesus’ time didn’t believe in the afterlife, so they try to catch Jesus out by presenting to him a scenario involving seven brothers who are married successively to the same woman. Mockingly, they ask Jesus, “Which one will be her husband in the afterlife?” In effect, Jesus tells them that they are missing the point about what the afterlife really involves. He points out to them that once this life is over, as children of God, we become children of the resurrection. Then we will realise that we are one family of God and all belong to God and one another. This is a promise that Jesus gives us and which also applies to all of those faithful souls who gave their lives in the two World Wars and other armed conflicts. War is tragic, but the eternal reward of loving sacrifice is a value at the very heart of our faith.