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October 18, 2020

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DG BookGospel: Matthew 22:15-21
The Pharisees went away, considering how they could trap Jesus by his own words. They sent to him their disciples, along with members of Herod’s party,
saying, “Master, we know that you are an honest man, and truly teach God’s way. You are not influenced by others, nor are you afraid of anyone.
So tell us what you think: is it against the law to pay taxes to Caesar or not?” But Jesus understood their evil intentions, and said to them,
“Hypocrites, why are you trying to trap me? Show me the coin with which you pay taxes.” They showed him a silver coin, and Jesus said to them,


“Whose head is this, and whose name?” They answered, “Caesar’s.” Then Jesus replied, “So give to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and give to God what is God’s.”

LECTIO DIVINA:

Read:
The Responsorial Psalm captures well the theme of this Sunday: “Give the Lord glory and honor.”

King Cyrus of Persia is called the “anointed” of the Yahweh for he fulfills His divine will, namely:
the liberation of the exiled Israel. Cyrus, a pagan king gives God glory by his just policy.
The Pharisees and Herodians (otherwise sworn enemies) pose a seemingly impossible dilemma to Jesus
– about the lawfulness of Jews paying taxes to the Roman emperor. Jesus’ answer, so famous in our politicized world,
puts the inquisitors instead into a dilemma. “Render to Caesar, what is his and to God what is God’s.

Reflect: This oft quoted verse is not so much about separation of church and state as about fulfilling our rightful obligations.

We are citizens of two worlds – heaven and earth. As citizens of this world we must fulfill our just duties and obligations.
As citizens of heaven we are equally obliged to give what is due to God!

Pray: We bear in our persons the image of the Divine. Thus, we belong to God. We owe God our obedience and loyalty.

When there comes a conflict between our obligation to this world and our obligation to God, we pray we may opt to stand loyal to Him whose image we bear!

Act: The challenge to us who bear the image of the Divine is to ask: “Am I a faithful image or reflection of my God?”

Can people who see me be able to recognize God?

© Copyright Bible Diary 2020

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