“Present yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life, and your members to God as instruments for righteousness.” (Romans 6:13)
They supposed that by conniving and deceit they could shove the carpenter into a corner, suffocate him with shavings of words, pin him with nail-‐-‐-‐pointed questions. They were the religious elite, the aristocratic Jews, and the irreligious scoffers, all plotting the demise of an irritating teacher whose lessons had uncovered their naked shame. Revenge was now their masked intent.
Jesus knew their hearts and saw through their schemes. When they confronted him on taxes, he slipped out of their noose and swung the rope back at them. The coin had Caesar’s image engraved on it and therefore was to be rendered to Rome’s governing body. The kingdom of earth must be supported by currency manufactured by its government (Matthew 22:15-‐22).
Since the Kingdom of Heaven operates with its own coinage, the King laid out a logical response. Because every human being is stamped with the image of his or her Creator, the Sovereign Lord holds claim on us. If his likeness is imprinted on us, we belong to him. What he owns must be rendered to him, for his use, for his purpose, for his eternal plan…“to God the things that are God’s” (Matthew 22:21)
The scornful hypocrites did not grasp the Master’s meaning. His answer stumped them, and they retreated temporarily. Still his radical message reveals transforming truth for us today. From the Garden God declared, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.” Carved into each one of us is the imprint of Almighty God. We are not our own, and our lives should be spent rendering back glory, honor, and praise to the One we are designed to resemble.
Go ahead. Picture yourself as Kingdom currency within the palm of God. Now, allow the Most High to spend your life how he deems best.