Mark 12:13-17 – Paying the Imperial Tax to Caesar

Kids and Youth

  • What did Christ mean when He said we are to “render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s?”

The Pharisees were trying to trick Jesus into giving an answer that would either break God’s law or man’s law. They were trying to make him choose a side (they wanted an either / or answer). Jesus answer is so good it surprised everyone because it respected both laws (he gave a both / and answer). He basically said it is okay to pay your taxes to Caesar, but you are to give to God what he owns as well! As we know God owns all things, including human beings who bear his image. Jesus answer satisfied both parties and gave God the higher honor He is due in a very subtle way.