by: Sean Fitzgerald
Read Matthew 22:15-22
While Jesus is in the temple teaching, he is targeted by the religious leaders. Their plan on this day is to entrap Jesus, making him choose to side either with the Jewish people and deny their need to pay taxes to Rome or to side with the Roman government and demand the Jewish people to pay their taxes. Either way, the opposing party of people would turn against him and they, the religious leaders, would be free from this man and his trouble causing ways.
Jesus' response, like usual, is one of wisdom and profound meaning. "Whose likeness and inscription is this?" By asking for the coin and identifying ownership by the image it bears, Jesus is pointing them (and us) to a deeper understanding of who we are and to whom we belong. Do you remember what Genesis 1:27 says? "So God created man in his own IMAGE, in the IMAGE OF GOD he created him;". We were made in the image of God, therefore as Jesus calls for us to surrender back to God what is his, he is asking for us to give him our very lives!
- Do you value the fact that you are made in the image of God?
- How should this knowledge provide us with value and self-worth?
- Why is it that we so often lose sight of this truth and undervalue who we are?
Taking It To Your Family
Find your most recent family picture, school pictures, or stand in front of the mirror. Discuss how this picture or image is not the real you, it's not living and breathing, it is only an image that reflects your likeness.
As you read Matthew 21:15-22 connect Jesus' claim that because the image on the coin was Caesar's that it belonged to Caesar with what we read in Genesis 1:27. What does this mean then when Jesus says, "Give unto Caesar what is Caesar and God what is God's"?
Now Do Something...
Go into your bathrooms. and write on the mirror "Genesis 1:27". Memorize this passage so that every time you see you reflection in the mirror you are reminded that you are looking at the likeness or image of God! If you would rather not write on the mirror you could write it on paper and tape it to the mirror.
As you "reflect" on this passage offer a prayer asking God to help you live knowing that you belong to Him and that you reflect His image as you live.
Blessings and Peace,
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