Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Give Back To God What Is God's

Give back to God What is God's
These are the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, spoken in an incident in which some of his haters were trying to catch Jesus in an offence against the then political system.  Most of the teachings of Jesus was not a threat to the Roman Empire which was ruling the Provinces of Israel and Palestine though Christ came preaching about a different Kingdom in the Roman King’s Rule, but it was unbearable for religious leaders.  The elders of the religion, chief priests, and pharisees were closely watching and spying to see in what manner they could catch Jesus Christ in His teaching and preaching that He had committed an offense against the Ruling Government and hand him over to the Governor’s rule and authority.  This Governor was sent by the Roman Kingdom to be in-charge of the provinces.

So, they find one moment to trap Jesus by asking a question whether to pay taxes or not.  Because Jesus was preaching about another Kingdom, they were expecting that Jesus would say “when you belong to the Kingdom of God, you don’t need to pay taxes.”  However, Jesus gave them an amazing answer and they were not able to catch Him by His word.  It is described as below. 

Luke 20
20 Keeping a close watch on him, they sent spies, who pretended to be sincere. They hoped to catch Jesus in something he said, so that they might hand him over to the power and authority of the governor.
21 So the spies questioned him: “Teacher, we know that you speak and teach what is right, and that you do not show partiality but teach the way of God in accordance with the truth.
22 Is it right for us to pay taxes to Caesar or not?”
23 He saw through their duplicity and said to them,
24 “Show me a denarius. Whose image and inscription are on it?”
“Caesar’s,” they replied.
25 He said to them, “Then give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.”

The above Bible verses say that Jesus read their thoughts and intentions and understood that they did not ask Him out of a genuine thirst or a drive to know the truth but out of their craftiness to catch Him by His own word and bring upon Him some kind of danger or harm.  He told them to show a coin.  He puts forth a question back to those who asked Him the question, Whose image and inscription does it have? They had to reply Caesar’s because that was the image that was inscribed on it.  Then He says give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s. 

Let’s take the latter part of the verse which says “Give back to God what is God’s.”  Let’s try and analyze, where we can see the image and inscription of God?  The earth and its fulness belong to God.  God is the creator.  Also, Mankind is created in the image and likeness of God.  In another words God has inscribed His Image upon us and He has stamped upon us that He is the Creator and that we belong to the Kingdom of God.  Not all are in the Kingdom of God.  Those who are not under the Lordship and Ruler-ship of God are strangers and aliens to the Kingdom of God.  Kingdom of God is not visible to the eyes (Luke 20:21) It is within us in our hearts.  When we accept the Lordship of Jesus Christ through believing that we are made righteous by the sacrificial death and resurrection of Jesus, we become the citizens of the Kingdom of God.  This process is called “to be born again,” because we are re-created in the image and likeness of the Lord Jesus Christ.  So, as the citizens of the Kingdom of God, God stamps upon us His Image and the inscription that says that we are His Royal Children, we belong to His family, and we are His possession. 

Since we belong to God, we are God’s.  Now, we don’t belong to ourselves, but Christ the King.  Our eyes are not ours, our ears are not ours, our feet are not ours, the members of our bodies are not ours, our passion, our liking, our wills, emotions, our properties, our possessions, everything should be centered on the Will of God.

It is not suffice that we are saved and born-again, but we need to have the understanding that we are not our own and we belong to the Kingdom.  We need to give ourselves back to the Kingdom.  It does not mean that all of us have to leave our current occupations and professions and become full time serving the Lord.  But it means in our capacity, in our circles which God has placed us in, we need to be doing the Will of the King. 

I once again would like to remind ourselves that Kingdom of God is not outside in any church or organization, it is within us in our hearts.  The Lord is ruling as King from our heart and the principles and precepts of the King are already given to us in the book called Bible.  Dr. Myles Munroe who has been my inspiration ever since I stumbled upon his book “Kingdom Principles,” calls Bible as the Constitution of the Kingdom of God.

It is so sweet to give ourselves back to the Kingdom than paying taxes to the government.  Because our Ruler, our King is generous and benevolent.  He does not rule us with Iron Hand.  Look how He rules us when we surrender to His Lordship....

Isaiah 11:
1 A shoot will come up from the stump of Jesse; from his roots a Branch will bear fruit.
2 The Spirit of the Lord will rest on him - the Spirit of wisdom and of understanding, the Spirit of counsel and of might, the Spirit of the knowledge and fear of the Lord—
3 and he will delight in the fear of the Lord. He will not judge by what he sees with his eyes, or decide by what he hears with his ears;
4 but with righteousness he will judge the needy, with justice he will give decisions for the poor of the earth. He will strike the earth with the rod of his mouth; with the breath of his lips he will slay the wicked.
5 Righteousness will be his belt and faithfulness the sash around his waist.

6 The wolf will live with the lamb, the leopard will lie down with the goat, the calf and the lion and the yearling[a] together; and a little child will lead them.
7 The cow will feed with the bear, their young will lie down together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox.
8 The infant will play near the cobra’s den, and the young child will put its hand into the viper’s nest.
9 They will neither harm nor destroy on all my holy mountain, for the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea.

The shoot that comes up from the stump of Jesse indicates the Lord Jesus Christ and the rest of the verses speaks of His rule, how He will rule.  The result of which there will be no harm or destruction in His Kingdom.  Though this speaks of His 1000-year rule, just like that God is able to provide us goodness and His care in our lives and keep us out of the evils of this world.

Is it not a wise and best decision to come into the Lordship of Jesus and come under His Kingdom care and protection?  If your answer is yes, shall we then pray the following prayer?

Dear Father in Heaven, holy be your name.  I understand and conceive that Jesus has paid the price for my sin through His death on the cross.  I repent for my sins and I ask for forgiveness of my sins and washing of my sins through the Lord Jesus Christ.  I believe in Him and receive Him as my savior and Lord.  I come under the Lordship of Jesus.  I want to be reborn into your kingdom.  Thank you for taking me from this world of darkness and translating me into the Kingdom of Your Dear Son Jesus Christ.  Holy Be Your Name.  Your Kingdom come upon my life as it is in heaven.  Your Will be done in my life as it is heaven.  Thank you for making me a citizen of the Kingdom of God and stamping upon me Your Image and Inscription declaring that I belong to You.  Having thoroughly understood that I belong to you, as the Lord Jesus said, I give myself back to You.  Lord have Your way in the every day of my life and teach me Your precepts and statutes from the Constitution of the Kingdom of God.  Help me to walk in loving obedience to Your Will and Ways.  In Jesus Name I pray.  Amen. 

So...readers...hope that this post must have been a blessing to you.  Please feel free to share your thoughts and comments on this post.  Thanks!!

Written by Shanta S. Daniel

[Copyright@ Permission is granted to duplicate this article in its entirety, but only without additions, alterations or omissions of any kind, including the author and ministry name at the end]

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