Daily Reading 10-25-17
Matthew 17:24-27 New Living Translation (NLT)
In our passage today, Jesus’s critics are once again criticizing Him to His disciples about taxes. The temple tax was prescribed in Exodus 30:13. This passage is not about paying taxes to the civil government, it is about fulfilling a worship obligation to God.
The point Jesus makes is that the Christ and His disciples enjoy a relationship with God that frees them from the obligations imposed upon “others.” Kings and their family did not pay taxes. Jesus, the King, owed no taxes; however, He chose to comply with the Law’s requirements to avoid offending others.
As heirs of the King, we are a free people in Christ, yet we need to be sensitive to how we are perceived by others. God provides for the tax and Christ pays not only for himself but for Peter, as well. Everything we need to live in the image of God is provided by God.
Matthew 17:24-27 Payment of the Temple Tax
24 On their arrival in Capernaum, the collectors of the Temple tax came to Peter and asked him, “Doesn’t your teacher pay the Temple tax?”
25 “Yes, he does,” Peter replied. Then he went into the house.
But before he had a chance to speak, Jesus asked him, “What do you think, Peter? Do kings tax their own people or the people they have conquered?”
26 “They tax the people they have conquered,” Peter replied.
“Well, then,” Jesus said, “the citizens are free! 27 However, we don’t want to offend them, so go down to the lake and throw in a line. Open the mouth of the first fish you catch, and you will find a large silver coin. Take it and pay the tax for both of us.”
Prayer: Lord, thank you for providing the love, faith, fruit…all things that I need to look like you. I simply bring my desire and surrender my will in order to receive. In Jesus’ name. Amen.