Rev. Zelwyn Heide, pastor at St. Peter Lutheran Church in Hannover, ND and Zion Lutheran Church in New Salem, ND, joins host Rev. Timothy Appel to study Mark 12:13-17.
Despite theological and political differences over paying taxes to Rome, the Pharisees and Herodians find common ground in their hatred of Jesus. During Holy Week, they come to Jesus in an effort to trap Him. As they flatter Him with words they likely do not mean, they end up speaking the truth about Jesus and His judgment. Their words prove true as Jesus skillfully evades their trap and teaches the truth of God’s Word. He forces them to produce the coin used to pay the tax, the coin that bore Caesar’s image and idolatrous inscription. Using His enemies’ answer against them, Jesus refuses to play their game as He upholds the God-give authority of earthly governments, all the while indicating the overarching authority that God has over everything and everyone.
“The Gospel in Action” is a mini-series on Sharper Iron that goes through the Gospel according to St. Mark. The Evangelist hits the ground running with the very first verse of his Gospel account, and he never lets up the pace. As one deed of Jesus comes right after another, always paired with His authoritative Word, St. Mark proclaims the good news that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, revealed conclusively by His death on the cross.
Sharper Iron, hosted by Rev. Timothy Appel, looks at the text of Holy Scripture both in its broad context and its narrow detail, all for the sake of proclaiming Christ crucified and risen for sinners. Two pastors engage with God’s Word to sharpen not only their own faith and knowledge, but the faith and knowledge of all who listen.
Sharper Iron is underwritten by Lutheran Church Extension Fund, where your investments help support the work of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. Visit lcef.org.
Paying Taxes to Caesar
13 And they sent to him some of the Pharisees and some of the Herodians, to trap him in his talk. 14 And they came and said to him, “Teacher, we know that you are true and do not care about anyone’s opinion. For you are not swayed by appearances,[a] but truly teach the way of God. Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not? Should we pay them, or should we not?” 15 But, knowing their hypocrisy, he said to them, “Why put me to the test? Bring me a denarius[b] and let me look at it.” 16 And they brought one. And he said to them, “Whose likeness and inscription is this?” They said to him, “Caesar’s.” 17 Jesus said to them, “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” And they marveled at him.
English Standard Version (ESV)
The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Permanent Text Edition® (2016). Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.