Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Passion Week: Tuesday

As Jesus returned to the city, the Pharisees are waiting for him. In Luke 20, they greet him with questions about taxation and how God feels about that: "Is it right to pay taxes to Caesar or not?" Either answer works for them equally well since they can easily turn either one into a bully pulpit to bludgeon Jesus with. If he says "no", they'll brand him with treason and have him charged with being a traitor. If he says "yes", the people will turn on him as siding with the state and thus his influence will end. Wow. Talk about a tough spot.

Jesus powerful response demonstrates the depth of his divinity. "Show me the denarius - whose inscription is on it?" The Pharisees correctly answered it was Caesar's inscription. Jesus answered their challenge with: "Then give to Caesar what belongs to him and give to God what belongs to him." To say it another way, give to Caesar that which has his image (the coin) and give to God what belongs to Him (your very self!).
Jesus still calls us to commit ourselves to himself. He invites us to give ourselves fully without holding back, to a passionate relationship with Him and His kingdom. How will you respond to that invitation?

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