Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Keep Our Eyes on Jesus!

Matthew 22:21

“Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.”

82015 RayAt a church I pastored years ago – someone came to me with a concern.  The concern was that our church – at that time – wasn’t as welcoming to people of differing political views with the majority.  This got me thinking and I met with this person over lunch.  We talked – mostly I listened.  The majority/minority issue was concerning politics – political parties.  I was puzzled because I was raised in one party and am now in another – yet my Christianity is greater than my political leanings.  So I listened some more.  The person I was talking to said that at times – they do not feel welcome at church because their political views are not found in the majority at our church (no poll, simply their experience).

I have prayed about this subject and then looked at it in light of our vision and mission as a church.  I found that most of us have very similar views Biblically – which is very much what a church family should focus on.  Yet we have differing social views – which are not always Biblical – yet deal with Biblical subjects.  For instance – dealing with social subjects like abortion – human sexuality – poverty – health care – capital punishment – social justice – and more – can and often must touch our faith as well as our citizenship.  Often – we do not do a good job of splitting the two.

Neither party has a corner on a Biblical worldview. Neither party can corner the market on the faith based community.  Some churches cater to one party over another – and not always because of faith issues.  We have a hard time IMHO – separating our faith based views and our political views.  Here is how Jesus dealt with it – with today’s passage in partial context.

Matthew 22:15-21 – 15 Then the Pharisees went out and laid plans to trap him in his words. 16 They sent their disciples to him along with the Herodians. “Teacher,” they said, “we know you are a man of integrity and that you teach the way of God in accordance with the truth. You aren’t swayed by men, because you pay no attention to who they are. 17 Tell us then, what is your opinion? Is it right to pay taxes to Caesar or not?” 18 But Jesus, knowing their evil intent, said, “You hypocrites, why are you trying to trap me? 19 Show me the coin used for paying the tax.” They brought him a denarius, 20 and he asked them, “Whose portrait is this? And whose inscription?” 21 “Caesar’s,” they replied. Then he said to them, “Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.”

Whatever our political view – we should keep focused on Jesus – on Biblical things.  We should give to Caesar what is Caesar’s – and to God what is God’s.  As the 2016 Presidential elections unfold – we need to keep our eyes on Jesus and not our political party.

Just something to think about today as you go on your way.

September 14, 2015 - Posted by | Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Denomination, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , ,

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