Marriage in Heaven

by Jim on 16 September 2005

A while ago I received a question about marriage in Heaven.  I’m posting my answer, slightly edited, for your comments.  What do you think?

Marriage in heaven?

When we’re talking about marriage in Heaven, we should probably start with Jesus’ clear teaching on the topic.  In Matthew 22, the Sadducees came to Jesus with what they thought was a trick question.

You see, the Sadducees didn’t believe that we would rise from the dead at all.  So they thought they had a clever example to prove their point.  What about a woman who’s been married 7 times?  If you’re so smart, tell us who she’ll be married to in Heaven!

Jesus knew that they didn’t even believe that anyone would rise from the dead.  So He basically told them that they were waaaay off.  First of all, there is indeed a resurrection.  Second, there won’t be marriage in Heaven.  So this is really no reason to reject life after death.

Paul reinforced this idea in Romans 7.  The only reason we can marry again after a spouse dies is because death releases us from the marriage vow.  When we say,”Until death do us part” that’s what we mean – we’re only married until death releases us from the vow.  That’s the way it’s always been since the beginning of time.

That’s the legal aspect, but what about the relationship itself?   That’s a totally different story.

The Bible makes it very clear that our relationships are important.  Jesus said in Mark 12:30-31 that the two greatest commandments involve loving God and loving one another.  It’s clear also that these relationships are meant to be ongoing after death.  Jesus is coming back why?  To allow us to be with him (John 14:3).

Paul wrote to the church in Thessolonica that those people would be his glory and joy when Jesus returned.  Why?  Because he had discipled them – he had built them up, encouraged them, worked with them.  He had a relationship with them.  And in Heaven he knew that he could be happy that he had had a part in their lives.  That relationship was going to go on.

We don’t know exactly what our relationships will be like in Heaven.  Even if someone explained it to us, I doubt we would totally understand.  But we do know that in the future we will be free from sin, we’ll be close to Jesus, and we’ll have joy in one another.

From this we can see that our relationships with God and with other believers will be better than ever.  They will grow into something so wonderful we can’t even understand it now.  Those we have poured our lives into here on earth will be close to us from the start.  And we’ll have billions of years to make many new friends!

So this would seem to be something that couples can look forward to.  As you work on your relationship, you’re not working on something that will be ripped away when you die.  You’re working on something that will last forever in Christ.  Our relationships really do have an eternal value, beyond what we can imagine.  And that should make today, and the way we treat each other each hour, more important than ever!

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