I am his.
Only Jesus can take a tax question and turn it into a spiritual lesson.
God created me. I sold myself into a life of slavery to sin. Sin is in my nature. I’ve committed them all. I’ve never killed but I have hated and Jesus says it’s the same thing. I have never strayed from Marriage vows but I have had thoughts. Jesus said it’s the same thing. I have lied, I have stolen, I have envied and gossiped, and been gluttonous. Of the commandments I have broken them all, from the first “You shall have no other gods before[a] me.” To the last, “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his male or female servant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.” ( thanks HGTV).
But I digress. Here is what Jesus was talking about in Matthew 22.
“15 Then the Pharisees went out and laid plans to trap him in his words. 16 They sent their disciples to him along with the Herodians. “Teacher,” they said, “we know that you are a man of integrity and that you teach the way of God in accordance with the truth. You aren’t swayed by others, because you pay no attention to who they are. 17 Tell us then, what is your opinion? Is it right to pay the imperial tax[a] to Caesar or not?”
18 But Jesus, knowing their evil intent, said, “You hypocrites, why are you trying to trap me? 19 Show me the coin used for paying the tax.” They brought him a denarius, 20 and he asked them, “Whose image is this? And whose inscription?”
21 “Caesar’s,” they replied.
Then he said to them, “So give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.”
22 When they heard this, they were amazed. So they left him and went away.”
I belong to God because he created me.
“26 Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals,[a] and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”
27 So God created mankind in his own image,
in the image of God he created them;
male and female he created them.”
God’s stamp is on me. But I sold myself to sin. I cannot belong to sin and God at the same time. God wants me back. Not to punish me, but to love on me, like a father does to a repentant wayward child on their return.
He sent Jesus to die a sacrificial death. It’s a death I deserve but Jesus did it for me. And then he raised him back to life so we can be forever together.
Paul said it very well in his letter to the Romans, “6 You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. 7 Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. 8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
9 Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him! 10 For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life! 11 Not only is this so, but we also boast in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.”
God longs for us all to come back to him. He has made a way through his son Jesus.
Today will you receive the welcome back? If you already have, will you invite someone else to do the same?