Let us consider when some Sadducees were challenging Jesus about the resurrection. This story appears in MT 22:23-33, MK 12:18-27, and LK 20:27-38. They were asking him a legalistic question about marriage and inheritance laws. They thought that they were going to trip him up on the religious authority of Moses. Just before, the Pharisees had tried to catch him up regarding civil law. Both groups were trying to discredit him by making him refute higher, established authority. This would get him in trouble with the crowds and make them leave him. It might also get him arrested – something they wanted. They desperately wanted him to stop talking and for people to stop listening to him.
Instead, Jesus turned the tables on them and taught them even more than they were asking.
Here’s my condensed version of the most important part here –
–He continued, getting to the real reason for their question. “Concerning the resurrection of the dead, don’t you remember the passage in Scriptures when God spoke to Moses from the burning bush? He said ‘I am the God of Abraham and the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob.’ We learn from this that God is the God of the living, not the dead, because in God’s eyes, all are living with him.”–
Note that God uses the present tense, not the past. If Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, their forefathers from thousands of years earlier, were dead in God’s eyes, God would have said “I was…” not “I am…” This is essential to his argument, and essential for us today.
If we live in faith and in accordance with God’s will, then we, the real part of us, never die. Our bodies are just vessels for our souls. Our bodies are temporary, while our souls are eternal. Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob were with God when God spoke to Moses in the burning bush, and are with God right now.
This is proof of eternal life. The death of the body isn’t death, not in any real sense. Jesus wanted the Sadducees to know this, and wants us to know this right now.