God never wanted His people to have a king reigning over them.  He wanted to be their King, but their hearts were corrupt and freedom is not safe in the hands of a corrupt people. When the Israelites insisted, God spoke through Samuel to the people, “Do as they ask but solemnly warn them about the way a king will reign over them.” 1 Samuel 8:9

God warned His people that the king would take from them, even as much as God Himself asked of them: ten percent of their income. This was apparently inconceivable to them, because they persisted.

Through Samuel, the Lord said, “He will take a tenth of your grain, and your grape harvest..” and distribute it. 1 Samuel 8:15

And here we are in the United States, where our taxes are reaching,not just 10%, but 20%, 30%, and even 40% or more of our annual income.  As quickly as our taxes rise, our liberties in this country are decreasing by the day.  Freedom is a gift from God, but corruption corrodes that gift.

Jesus clearly didn’t condone heavy taxation, or there would have been no trap in the question the Pharisees presented to Him in Mark 12.  The answer would have been easy.  Jesus was never afraid of speaking the truth. He would have simply told them to pay whatever taxes are demanded.  However, that was not the case, and Jesus, the Divine Genius, gave an answer that neither defied the government nor condoned overtaxation.

The Lord Warned us, “He will take a tenth of your grain, and your grape harvest” and distribute it…  1 Samuel 8:15

“Later they sent some of the Pharisees and Herodians to Jesus to catch him in his words. They came to him and said, ‘Teacher, we know that you are a man of integrity. You aren’t swayed by others, because you pay no attention to who they are; but you teach the way of God in accordance with the truth. Is it right to pay the imperial tax to Caesar or not? Should we pay or shouldn’t we?’

But Jesus knew their hypocrisy. “Why are you trying to trap me?” he asked. “Bring me a denarius and let me look at it.” They brought the coin, and he asked them, “Whose image is this? And whose inscription?”

“Caesar’s,” they replied.

Then Jesus said to them, “Give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s.”

And they were amazed at him.”  Mark 12:13-17

God is the grantor of freedom, whether physical, geographical, financial or anything else. The way to freedom is through God, and Him alone.

“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”  Matthew 6:33

 

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