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Render To God What Is Gods


Matthew 22:15-22

In these verses you find another attempt to try and “trap” Jesus so that they might ruin His report with the people…

Anyway, those who oppose Jesus once again try to destroy His report with the people…and what they would really like to do is find justification to have Him put to death.

Now as we start this story it is interesting “who” was sent to “trap” Him.

And so what you have here is two opposing groups who despised each other, putting aside their hatred for one another in order to try and trap Jesus.

But they have a problem.

So they try to conceal their intentions behind flattery and the pretense of sincerely wanting to know an answer to a matter of conscience.

Now, I think it is interesting that if these guys are saying here what they sincerely believe…then in just a few days when they encourage and support Jesus’ death and crucifixion…they bring judgment upon themselves for killing one who they themselves said,  “taught the way of God. “

So these men who come to “trap” Jesus…with their false pretenses and insincere words actually “snare” themselves.

But in any case, they come with all of this flattery, trying to disarm the crowds.

 Now, this was a loaded question.

But on the other hand, if He says, “No, don’t pay the tax”, the Herodians will make sure that Rome finds out.

So this is a loaded question, and they think they have Him trapped.

But notice how He deals with their attempt to trap Him.

The look at what He says next: “Why are you testing Me, You hypocrites?”

It always amazes me how people think they can fool Christ.

Jesus knows. You do not fool Him.

And notice, Jesus isn’t impressed by their flattery.

And then He tells them to “Show Me the coin used for the poll tax.

And at this point, all eyes and ears are on Jesus.

The Pharisees are waiting to see if He endorses paying the tax…if so, then they too can accuse Him of being a traitor to the Jewish people.

All eyes are on Jesus…waiting to see what He says.

Look what He says in verse 21.

 Now most people think that Jesus’ primary point here is He is telling people to pay their taxes.

I believe that Jesus is saying more than that here.

Look at this.

And what does Jesus do.

 What did Caesar’s image and inscription on that coin mean?

And Jesus speaking of that coin says, “Render”…or give back or pay back  to Caesar that which is Caesar’s”

Now notice what Jesus says next.

What was there at the time that belonged to God?

They did!

But instead they had rebelled against God…and had rejected God…and denied God.

And I believe that what Jesus is telling these people here is, “just as this coin belongs to Caesar you belong to God…render to Caesar that which is Caesar’s, and to God that which is God’s. “

I don’t think it is an accident that this passage follows the Parable of the Vineyard and the first 13 verses of this.

But they rejected God’s messengers…and killed them.

 And just before this these people are described as those whom God invited to a wedding feast for His Son…and they refused.

And now, once again, here in these verses Jesus is calling them to “Render to God what is God’s.”

Let me show you something. Turn to Ephesians 1. Look at verse 13.

 13        In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation– having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise, 14         who is given as a pledge of our inheritance, with a view to the redemption of {God’s own} possession, to the praise of His glory.

 What this says is, as a Christian you were sealed…you were marked…as belonging to God.

But, it may be that some of us have done the same thing as the Jews did.

Well, just as He told these people, Jesus is telling you…”Render to God that which is God’s”

If you have never been baptized into Christ…I want you to do something…I want you to look at your hands.