11 Apr Give To Caesar What Is Caesar’s, And To God What Is God’s
Give To Caesar What Is Caesar’s, And To God What Is God’s
Verses to read: <Mt 22:15-22>
15 Then the Pharisees went out and laid plans to trap him in his words.
16 They sent their disciples to him along with the Herodians. “Teacher,” they said, “we know that you are a man of integrity and that you teach the way of God in accordance with the truth. You aren’t swayed by others, because you pay no attention to who they are.
17 Tell us then, what is your opinion? Is it right to pay the imperial tax to Caesar or not?”
18 But Jesus, knowing their evil intent, said, “You hypocrites, why are you trying to trap me?
19 Show me the coin used for paying the tax.” They brought him a denarius,
20 and he asked them, “Whose image is this? And whose inscription?”
21 “Caesar’s,” they replied.
Then he said to them, “So give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.”
22 When they heard this, they were amazed. So they left him and went away.
1. Give to God what is God’s
* What belongs to God?
-> Everything! [animation]
1) Relationship between the spiritual and physical worlds
- No Sacred-Secular Divide
2) Give God what is God’s – Our whole person, whole life and full submission.
2. Not oppose nor compromise with the world, but impact the world.
1) Christians’ problem: Have spiritual truth, but lack practical answers.
Faith is full of dilemmas and contradictions
- They themselves feel weak and conflicted
- Draws criticisms and doubts from non-believers too
2) Consequently, many Christians just compromise with the world.
- Compromise with controversial issues?
- Compromise with life values/priorities?
3) But God wants us to be salt and light to impact the world.
- Jesus’ life demonstrated “how to submit to God in all things”.
- Jesus didn’t defy “science, logic or laws of nature”. Most of the time, He lived by them.
- Sometimes, Jesus performed miracles to prove that He is above all these “science, logic and natural laws”.
- We too will be blessed if we live in submission to the natural laws and the earthly authorities set by God.
- Such submission is also a form of worship to God.
– <Ro 13:2> Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves.
4) Rule of Thumb: Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every human authority
<1 Pe 2:13>
- Do not fear nor honor humans more than God.
- Obey as long as they do not violate our worship of God.
- “We must obey God rather than human beings! < Acts 5: 29>
- “Caesar” can only claim what is his; but Caesar (the world) cannot claim what belongs rightfully to God alone – Our single-hearted worship.
- Can I say that my Christian faith is practical and relevant to my daily living, or is it merely conceptual (i.e. Based on God’s truth that I learnt, can I easily get God’s perfect will for my practical life situations)? How so?
- I am both a child of God as well as a citizen on earth. In conflicting situations, how do I balance both? E.g.: Submitting to boss to do OT, yet also need to submit to God to spend time with Him; use salary to give God offerings and also spending on my own needs & pleasures; maintain harmony with people yet also have to spread the gospel which is also offensive in nature, etc. Are there areas which we have been compromising the world and where God is calling us to re-focus?