Matthew 22:19-22 (NASB) ‘Show Me the coin used for the poll-tax.” And they brought Him a denarius. And He *said to them, “Whose likeness and inscription is this?” They *said to Him, “Caesar’s.” Then He *said to them, “Then render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s; and to God the things that are God’s.” And hearing this, they were amazed, and leaving Him, they went away.
I have heard this passage referenced many times. Most every time I’ve heard it, the focus has been about money. I’ve heard this passage used in the context of idolatry and the corrupting nature of money. I’ve heard it used to illustrate the importance of paying your taxes and supporting the government (right here, Jesus says to). In all of the instances I can recall, they were appropriate disseminations, I believe, of part of what Jesus was imparting in this teaching.
But, what about the second part of this? What about, “and to God, the things that are God’s”? There’s no doubt in my mind this part in verse 21 has been taught on by pastors, preachers and teachers thousands of times over. Every time I’ve heard this taught on, it is in reference to tithing, giving to those in need and taking care of the church (big C). I do not think that it is inappropriate to look at this part in that regard. However, there’s so many very direct references to tithing, charity and providing for the church. I believe Jesus’ intent goes much deeper than this. Reading this passage the other day, for what suddenly felt like the first time, I see it differently than before.
I had to ask, “what is God’s”. Well, obviously, everything belongs to Him. But, what specifically is Jesus referencing here? God created man and woman in His image, we belong to Him. In this passage, it’s my belief that Jesus is stating that you are God’s and you must give God what is His. All of it, not just part of it goes to Him. He wants all of you, the good the bad, the whole package you are His and He wants you.
My question to you is, have you done that? Have you rendered to Caeser what is Caeser’s and to God the things that are His? Have you given your self over entirely or are you still holding back some for others in which it does not belong? Have a blessed weekend.
In full pursuit of the greatest Trophy,