QUESTION ON PAYING TAX TO CAESAR
While Jesus was teaching in the temple, the religious leaders, such as the Pharisees and Herodians, asked Jesus to trap Him about paying taxes to Rome. Their question was, "Is it lawful to pay a poll tax to Ceasar or not? During this time, the land of the nation of Israel was occupied by Rome, and every Jew was obligated to pay an annual poll tax to Rome or to Ceasar to support the Roman Empire that suppressed the Jews. The Ceasar or the Emperor at this time was Tiberius. He believed that He was a god and made coins for himself. The coin depicted his face on one side and, on the other side, depicted himself wearing a priestly garment and sitting on the throne, signifying that he was divine. Because of this, the Roman coin was idolatry to the Jews. If Jesus answered yes to their question, then that would mean that He was supporting Rome and participating in their idolatry. But if He said no, He was going against Rome, and He could be charged as a rebel or an enemy of Rome.
Jesus then answered them, "Give back to Caesar what is Caesar's and to God what is God's." And they were amazed at His answer. Jesus was saying to them that paying the poll tax to Rome was acceptable but give God what was His, which means their tithes and offering to God. Since Jews were under the occupation of Rome, they were obligated to pay taxes to Rome, but as Jews, they must also give tithes and offering to God. Similarly, we are obligated to pay taxes to the government, but we are also obligated by God to give tithe to Him.
Giving is a part of our daily walk with God. God gives us the provision to be able to give. There is no exception in giving. We should not neglect to pay our taxes and our tithe. Now, if we do not work or have no income, we are exempt from paying taxes, but we are not exempt from giving our tithes to God. Giving tithes is our act of worship to God. The amount does not matter to God, but our heart matters. Are we giving to God what His?
Ask yourself these questions: Do I pay taxes and give tithes? Am I giving to God what His? What is one of the reasons God provides us with what we need?
Write down all the worries you are facing today and lift them up to God.
Father in Heaven, You are the provider of my life. Please teach me to give. Help me not to be stingy but to give my tithe and offering to you. Also, help me to pay my taxes faithfully and honestly. You provide me with everything that I need so that I can give. Thank you for all your provision in my life. In your name Jesus, I pray. Amen.