Paying Taxes to Caesar

Jesus was once asked whether or not the people should pay taxes to Caesar (Lk.20:22-25). He could have responded easily enough with a “Yes” or “No.” Although they would have received an answer, they would not have learned much. So instead, he engaged the crowd in a discussion about What Belongs to Whom, and those who were paying attention and were teachable came away with an appreciation for the claim of God on their lives and a lot less anxiety about funding the coffers of their oppressors.

Jesus' way of approaching the issue went far beyond the crowd's desire to know the “right” answer, even though the question was a valid one. He helped them see their dilemma though the eyes of heaven, which not only pointed them in the right direction as far as their choices were concerned, but gave them a better understanding of how to discern God's heart in the matter. He changed the entire discussion from a question of ethics (Is it wrong for a Jew to pay taxes to a pagan ruler?) to a question of identity and relationship (Who am I as a Jew and how does my relationship to God impact how I relate to this world?). In so doing, he drew his listeners into a deeper relationship with God and away from their preoccupation about what made them right or wrong.
 
(The above is an excerpt taken from Whispers of my Abba)
 
This is a great example of how seeing life through the eyes of heaven can resolve a lot of anxiety and confustion about who we are and who God is and how God is involved with us. We just need to learn how to take our stuff to Him and listen to what He has to say about it.
David Takle

Author, speaker, apprentice.

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