When I was young I remember people asking if God could make a rock so big that he couldn't lift it. I'd think about it and then pass it off as one of those things I just wasn't going to be able to figure out. This week's Gospel provides an example of this kind of question.
Some Sadducees, those who deny that there is a resurrection, came forward and put this question to Jesus, saying, “Teacher, Moses wrote for us, If someone's brother dies leaving a wife but no child, his brother must take the wife and raise up descendants for his brother. Now there were seven brothers; the first married a woman but died childless. Then the second and the third married her, and likewise all the seven died childless. Finally the woman also died. Now at the resurrection whose wife will that woman be? For all seven had been married to her.” Jesus said to them, “The children of this age marry and remarry; but those who are deemed worthy to attain to the coming age and to the resurrection of the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage. They can no longer die, for they are like angels; and they are the children of God because they are the ones who will rise. That the dead will rise even Moses made known in the passage about the bush, when he called out ‘Lord,’ the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob; and he is not God of the dead, but of the living, for to him all are alive.” Luke 20:27-38
The Sadducees did not believe in the resurrection. Therefore, they obviously have ulterior motives in asking Jesus this convoluted question about marriage and remarriage. The Sadducees are using the law of Moses to demonstrate their authority while seeking to discredit Jesus. In fact, St. Luke places this story amongst several others that are all intended to "trap" Jesus.
As He typically did Jesus answers the question on a deeper level. His answer redirects the conversation to what truly matters. Jesus speaks not of the dead but the living! Jesus does not get caught up in the question of the law. He focuses the discussion back to the Law Giver.
Jesus speaks not of the rock but of God, not of the dead but the living. He is speaking of "...the children of God." Now as an adult I find myself with a completely different approach to these kinds of questions. When we have a personal relationship with the living God we need not worry about the right answers. We can focus on being a child of Him Who has all the answers. We can focus on living, not dying. Yes we can think about life after death but let's respond as I did as a child, "I'm not going to be able to figure that out." Embrace St. Paul's words from his second letter to the Thessalonians.
May the Lord direct your hearts to the love of God and to the endurance of Christ.
Think about that for a while!