Heaven’s Perfection of Love

Jesus teaches something interesting about the resurrected life by responding to a potential trap set by the Sadducees in the Gospel of Luke (20:27-40). The Sadducees did not believe in the resurrection, and so they crafted a question to Jesus: If a barren woman is widowed and remarried several times during her lifetime, who will be her husband in heaven? The Sadducees believed that it is impossible for Jesus to provide an adequate answer since it is impossible for him to select a particular husband, nor is it possible to say she would be married to all of them. Either choice would deny certain aspects and understandings of marriage itself. This argument and attempt to trap Jesus, however, merely demonstrates the depth of their ignorance and lack of comprehension regarding eternal life.

Jesus counters their question by teaching them that in heaven, there are no “goodbyes.” Relationships are perfect and unending. All of our relationships will exist within the context of our relationship with God, a relationship based on a perfection of love that is not realized during our lives on earth. Marriage is an imperfect reflection of the perfect love of God for us and of the Trinitarian love that will sustain us in the eternal life of the resurrection. Therefore, the limitations and restrictions on love that exist within the context of human relationships vanish in the presence of infinite, eternal love.

Father, help me to love. I desire to love others as myself. Give me the courage and strength I need to love as you love, and to forgive as you forgive. May my relationships with others reflect more boldly and brightly that eternal and infinite love with which you love me. Amen.

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An Unknown Time

Some in society have become very concerned about the end of the world. There are many late-night televangelists whose preaching is nearly completely focused on this topic. There are even entire book series dedicated to analyzing and making predictions about the “rapture” and “end times,” including who will be taken and who will be “left behind.” These fictionalized accounts and gross mis-interpretations of scripture are well written, widely preached, and entertaining, but are wholly lacking in fundamental Biblical and Apostolic Truth as taught by Jesus himself.

The Truth is that the end of the world will eventually come, and those who are with God will live forever in Heaven, while those who choose otherwise in their lives, will endlessly suffer in Hell. What we can be most assured of, if history is any lesson at all, is that each one of us will die and make an individual account for our lives. We trust in the God who has no beginning and no end, the one who created everything out of nothing, the one who will preside at the final judgment in infinite love, mercy, justice, and forgiveness.

As Jesus says, “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away. But of that day or hour, no one knows.” (NAB, MK 13:31-32) So, let us keep working out our salvation in our daily commitment to our Lord. The end of the world has not yet come, but we frequently encounter “ends” in our daily life. Each of these ends is accompanied by a new beginning, a new opportunity to love, a new invitation to grow, and a new call to draw closer to Jesus. Let us take advantage of these moments in our lives while time is still on our side.

Father, I know not when my life will end, nor do I know when your judgment will come. Give me your grace to end my current life of self-centeredness, pride, selfishness, foolishness, and egoism, so that I may begin to live for you alone, by loving you and loving my neighbor. Then, when I am confronted with my life’s choices on that unknown day, I may rest in the assurance that I chose you. Amen.

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