It’s Tax time. Someone said the only things we can be sure of are death and taxes. Someone else said that the power to tax is the power to destroy or kill. The Bible referred to taxes as tribute. Kings demand tribute. Rome demanded tribute and set up tax agents everywhere. Jesus always paid His taxes on time. He said we should render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and unto God the things that are God’s.
When it comes to Caesar, I don’t want to pay a penny more than I have to. I want every legal deduction available to me. I want to take advantage of every tax credit and option. Sometimes I over pay Caesar. On those occasions I get a welcomed refund or an adjustment on next year’s tax liability. Figuring my taxes can be complicated and sometimes I need a professional to help me determine what I “owe” Caesar.
Determining what I owe God is more simple. I owe Him everything. Perhaps tax time is a good time to remember this. Perhaps tax time would not be so painful if we also filled out another form besides our 1040 that listed all the blessings of the past year, all the good, all the goods, and all the services He has rendered. Perhaps tax time would be even a pleasant experience if we listed all “His benefits.” Not only has he fed and clothed us, His standing army of angels has surrounded and defended us. His clearly marked roads have been well maintained, and His pension funds and investments are sound. God has given us something greater than material blessings. Spiritual blessings are greater.
Rendering unto Caesar was necessary to pay Caesar’s army. Rome was aggressive when it came to killing or overcoming her enemies. We too must overcome our enemies, but not by killing them. God’s ways are different and rendering unto God is different. We pay our tribute to God every time we ‘love’ our enemies. Love is the coin and currency of the Spirit. Love is what God has given us and what we owe God. We show our love to God by loving others. Not by loving those who love us or are “like us.” There was a time when we were “enemies” of God, and God loved us. If our spiritual “Tax Return” requires us to love our enemies, let’s make sure that nothing, nothing is “Past Due.”