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Daily Devotional | God with us: The Gospel of Matthew | Man fishing with a net. Daily Devotional | God with us: The Gospel of Matthew | Man fishing with a net.

Daily Devotional | Eternity in His Presence

Have you ever tried to put together a new piece of furniture without reading the instruction manual? At first it might seem self-explanatory, but there’s nothing more troubling than to be left with several leftover pieces. Clearly, you needed more information.

In Matthew 22:23–33, Jesus confronts those who were misunderstanding something important. The Sadducees were a wealthy and powerful religious group. They believed in the Torah, the first five books of the Bible, and emphasized individual free will. They also did not believe in life after death, so their question to Jesus was dishonest. They questioned Jesus about marriage, hoping to trap Him (v. 23). Their question revealed that they did not fully comprehend what happened after death and what it would be like to be in God’s presence for eternity. Jesus responded by affirming the reality of the resurrection and the eternality of God’s presence. He corrected their misunderstanding: “He is not the God of the dead but of the living” (v. 32). The apostle Paul tackled this issue in 1 Corinthians: “How can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead?” (20:15).

The Sadducees needed guidance and clarity. God’s presence is not limited to our earthly existence; it’s eternal, encompassing both the now and the everlasting. His presence spans beyond our temporal understanding into an eternal reality. This knowledge should inspire awe, devotion, and joy in us and motivate us to dig deeper into His Word and seek to live more fully in His presence.

Jesus was critical of those who “do not know the scriptures or the power of God” (v. 29). It reminds us not to take lightly the privilege we have been given of reading and learning from God’s Word.

Go Deeper

What did the Sadducees believe? Why were they wrong? What are some popular ideas about God and eternity in our culture that are antibiblical?

Pray with Us: Lord, it’s a joy to reflect on Your words, that You are the God of the living. You gave us new life in You and eternity in Your kingdom! This truth motivates us to dig deeper into Your life-giving Word.

BY James Coakley

Dr. Jim Coakleyis professor of Bible at Moody Bible Institute. He earned his BA in Pastoral Studies from Calvary Bible College, his M.Div. and Th.M. in Old Testament from Grace Theological Seminary, and his doctorate from Covenant Theological Seminary. Jim is the author of 14 Fresh Ways to Enjoy the Bible (Moody Publishers). He and his wife, Gayle, live in the western suburbs of Chicago and have two adult children and three grandchildren. 

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