That it is profitable, may be true, but is it not too simplistic? Or is Truth simplistic yet hidden from common perception because of divergent aspiration; of lack of courage to see the Truth; or merely the fear of being wrong when the shaped majority opinion is contrary?I don’t know, but one of the instances in Jesus’ life on Earth is amazingly earthy.
24 And when they were come to Capernaum, they that received tribute money came to Peter, and said, Doth not your master pay tribute?
25 He saith, Yes. And when he was come into the house, Jesus prevented him, saying, What thinkest thou, Simon? of whom do the kings of the earth take custom or tribute? of their own children, or of strangers?
26 Peter saith unto him, Of strangers. Jesus saith unto him, Then are the children free.
27 Notwithstanding, lest we should offend them, go thou to the sea, and cast an hook, and take up the fish that first cometh up; and when thou hast opened his mouth, thou shalt find a piece of money: that take, and give unto them for me and thee.
The above passage reflects Jesus’ opinion about the temporal powers and the devices they had institutionalised.
In modern times, most countries have done away with Entry Tax on persons, since with evolution of society when people move from one city to another their payments towards lodging, boarding and purchases are all taxed, which provides a better return to the government than imposing an Entry Tax. At the time of Jesus in the flesh, even entry of human beings were liable for customs duty, but in modern times, the movement of persons is monitored by Immigration. Caesar had imposed customs duty on the goods and persons who entered from other cities and this was collected by those authorised persons.
Peter says that his Master doesn’t pay entry tax and as he walks towards Jesus, Jesus asks him whether kings collect taxes from the children of the land? Peter says No.
Jesus at this point says a few things which are astonishingly amazing.
Jesus agrees with Peter’s opinion but tells him thus:
Notwithstanding, lest we should offend them, go thou to the sea, and cast an hook, and take up the fish that first cometh up; and when thou hast opened his mouth, thou shalt find a piece of money: that take, and give unto them for me and thee.
Jesus COMPLIES with something He doesn’t subscribe to, yet in this case the compliance is to be backed by payment, look at what Jesus did: He tells Peter to cast a net and catch the first fish caught, open its mouth, take the piece of money and settle the customs claim “lest we offend them”!
Jesus doesn’t comply with the offerings received by Him, but tells Peter to catch the fish with the money and pay that piece of money.
This is a classic case of Compliance without Belief in what the law of the Times prescribes!
Jesus believed that one should render unto Caesar those which are Caesar’s, yet the income which was used to settle was a lost piece of coin, definitely lost in the books of Caesar’s accounts. Jesus remonetizes a lost coin into circulation.
Secondly, was Jesus concerned about offending those tax collectors?
It may appear so in the first flush, but Jesus definitely did not want to bring a blot to the duties being performed by those officials for a salary. It was Caesar’s policy of taxing the son’s of the soil that He was against, not the persons who did their job!
That was Jesus!
Yet, Preachers don’t expatiate this point or this instance with clarity. When an unreasonable Compliance is a must, the means with which it is complied, is immaterial! He complied without wasting His offerings and paid the entry tax out of a lost, hence a demonetised coin!
Comply with Contempt, at its best!!!
Today Tiberius Caesar, is no more, but Jesus’ act of Compliance with Contempt stands out💐💐💐‼‼