Give To Caesar What Is Caesar’s

28th July

He saw through their trickery and said, “Show me a Roman coin. Whose picture and title are stamped on it?” “Caesar’s,” they replied. “Well then,” He said, “give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar, and give to God what belongs to God.””

Luke 20:23-25

The Pharisees, time and time again tried to catch Jesus out, make Him look like a fool, or at best get Him arrested by the Romans for breaking their laws. In a similar situation, the Pharisees again approach Jesus to catch Him out however this time under the disguise of some spies pretending to be honest men.

The ‘honest men’ approach Jesus with flattering words that seemed contrary to their malicious intentions of trying to have Jesus arrested. They pose a question to Jesus to try to trick Him, “Is it right to pay taxes to Caesar?” If Jesus answered yes then the religious leaders could have stirred up a storm and put Jesus in the same bracket as the pious and greedy tax collectors. They could have accused Jesus of putting burdensome demands onto the Jewish people who already felt that taxation from the Romans was unfair and unjust. However, if Jesus answered no, then the religious leaders could have reported Jesus to the Roman governors for inciting rebellion among the Jews. Perhaps they could have even accused Jesus of being a religious zealot trying to set His people free from the Roman authority.

However, Jesus in His supreme wisdom answered, yet again, with such intelligence and authority. His answer, “to give to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s”. Amazing. In answering this way He silenced His critics, didn’t incite rebellion and actually taught both the people listening and today’s reader an important lesson.

We need to obey the law of the land and pay our taxes faithfully (for in doing so we honour God) and give to God what belongs to God (after all, everything we have is God’s anyway). Jesus’ wisdom yet again silenced the Pharisee’s shrewd tactics and yet again, Jesus set us an example of how we too should live our lives, purely, justly and righteously.

God’s Love Is Powerful

27th July

Praise the Lord, all you nations. Praise Him, all you people of the earth. For His unfailing love for us is powerful; The Lord’s faithfulness endures forever. Praise the Lord!”

Psalm 117

There is no greater love than the love of Father God. In fact the Psalmist tells us that God’s love for us is POWERFUL. It is because of His powerful love that sin was defeated. It was His powerful love that resurrected Jesus from the grave. It is His powerful love that saves even the most hardened criminals. Because of His powerful love towards us we too can have an intimate relationship with our Heavenly Father. Even when we rebel against Him, His powerful love calls us back into His arms. He is faithful and just always. His faithfulness endures forever.

It is because we are loved with such a powerful love, that we can praise Him, we can love Him too, and we can love others with the same love He loves us with. His powerful love breaks the chains of addiction, fear and bondage. His powerful love is liberating. He powerful is constantly re-uniting broken families and bringing hope and justice to the world. Let us unite in praise to the Lord, because of His Powerful love towards us and because of His faithfulness.

Start your week in praise. Accept His Powerful love. Love God. Love yourself. Love others.