15Then the Pharisees met together to plot how to trap Jesus into saying something for which he could be arrested.16They sent some of their disciples, along with the supporters of Herod, to meet with him. “Teacher,” they said, “we know how honest you are. You teach the way of God truthfully. You are impartial and don’t play favorites.17Now tell us what you think about this: Is it right to pay taxes to Caesar or not?”
18But Jesus knew their evil motives. “You ghypocrites!” he said. “Why are you trying to trap me?19Here, show me the coin used for the tax.” When they handed him a Roman coin,20he asked,“Whose picture and title are stamped on it?”
21“Caesar’s,” they replied.
“Well, then,” he said, “give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar, and give to God what belongs to God.”
22His reply amazed them, and they went away.
We have all heard this story so many times. Of course its starts with the Pharisees trying to trap Jesus. That act says so much about them. They have in front of someone who has made the blind see, cured the leper, fed 5,000 and even raised the dead…and all they want to do is arrest him. They have chosen to hold so tightly onto their own power and position that they entirely miss the power that created the universe. It is the opposite of what Jesus taught when he said in John 12:25 “25Those who love their life in this world will lose it. Those who care nothing for their life in this world will keep it for eternity.”
Jesus goes on to further reveal their hypocrisy when he asks them for a coin. He was in the temple area. A Jew was not allowed to have anything containing a “graven image”. The money changers that Jesus threw out a few days ago made a living exchanging Roman coins with images for Jewish coins that had no image because people weren’t allowed to enter the Temple area with Roman coins. Yet here, disciples of the religious leaders were able to produce for Jesus a Roman coin while inside the temple. He exposed them for the frauds they were, or rather, they exposed themselves.
But in end, all this is a simple call by God to love him and his holiness and his ways, and let the world and it shallowness and lifelessness be insignificant in our hearts and minds. To Jesus, paying the tax was a complete non event. Of course, he had nothing so the tax itself was nothing to him. Perhaps in our hearts we really shouldn’t own anything either. It is easy for me to say since God has always provided well for me, but I think that is the call. The money and the power of this world, just shouldn’t matter that much.
Lord, make me single hearted, with only You and Yours being the object of my love. Beginner’s Online Bible Study *obbs*