Paying taxes to Caesar

Gospel Matthew 22:15-21 

I would like to invite all of you to look inside your pockets, find a coin and look at it. Think of how you received this coin? What does it mean to you? My coin, which is from another country, has ‘Elizabeth II’ on one side. She extended her power beyond England. Let us talk about the power that money gives to people. In this time of a pandemic, money should not be the centre. People forget that man together with God must be the centre.

Today’s Gospel invites us to think about the opposition of two religions – one founded on money, the other on Jesus Christ, the Son of the Living God. They wanted to kill Him and put Him in a situation where He was not honouring Caesar. People that belong to the religion of money follow the path of destruction – teaching people to do whatever is needed to get it. This is happening right now with politicians, business men and women. We, Christians, need to stop and say, I have to think as a Christian and refuse to fall into this religion that worships money as their God.

‘Give back to Caesar what belongs to Caesar.’ The money in your bank account doesn’t belong to you! We can take nothing when we leave this Earth; everything belongs to the country, the leaders and the world. So give – it is our duty as Christians, an act of faith, love and charity.

‘Give to God what belongs to God.’ Humans belong to God but money came to take their place. Put humans at the centre of our minds and hearts. Don’t take advantage of anyone; don’t take away their dignity and rights.

Money is not something bad. It becomes an idol when it takes the place of God. It is necessary. Let us reflect, pray and behave as children that belong to God, that if we want to change the world, we need to change our relationships first.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.