Read: Matthew 22
Tuesday was one of the longest, hardest days in Jesus’ earthly life. His 
rejection of the moneychangers on Monday inflamed the authorities. As he 
returned to the Holy City his enemies were waiting for him, their trap baited.
Their question seemed simple: “Is it right to pay taxes to Caesar or 
not?” (Matthew 22:17). But their challenge forced Jesus to take a stand on 
the most dangerous controversy of the day. Rome required every subject to 
pay the “poll tax” to the Empire, using a coin which praised Caesar as divine. 
If Jesus supported such idolatry, the adoring crowds would turn into an ugly 
mob and reject him as their Messiah. If he rejected the tax, the Roman soldiers standing guard would arrest him in an instant. Either way, his enemies 
would be rid of the Galilean and his threat to their authority.
Jesus’ answer stunned his opponents: “Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s, 
and to God what is God’s” (v. 21). We are to be loyal to our country, but 
first we are to be loyal to our Lord. Now your Father wants you to love 
him “with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind,” and 
to “love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:37, 39). Take some time to 
examine your spiritual health:
• Do you love God with all your “heart,” committing your life to him as 
your King?
• Do you love him with all your “soul,” surrendering yourself to his Spirit 
each day with intimacy and passion?
• Do you love him with all your “mind,” growing daily in his word and worship?
• Do you love your neighbor as much as you love yourself?
For reflection
Will you ask your King to help you give him all he deserves today?

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