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caesarIn today’s Gospel, Mt 22:15-21, the religious leaders in Jerusalem continue their questions and challenges directed at Jesus. At this point the Pharisees, and the Herodians, try to entrap Jesus with their question about the payment of taxes. It seems the subject of taxes is a timeless human issue

There was an uncommon partnership between the Pharisees and the Herodians. The Herodians were supporters of Herod Antipas, a Jewish political leader who collaborated with the Romans and required a compromised observance of the Mosaic Law. The Pharisees opposed Romanoccupation, and taught scrupulous observance of the Mosaic Law. Herodians favored the payment of taxes; the Pharisees opposed it. The Herodians and the Pharisees approached Jesus, asking that he take a side in their dispute. If Jesus answers with the Pharisees, he shows himself to be an enemy of Rome. If he answers with the Herodians, he offends popular Jewish religious sensibilities.

Jesus’ response to this attempt to entrap him exposes the cunning of his questioners. You might say Jesus was stuck between a rock and a hard place. But, Jesus shows that he is very much aware of the trap they are setting. He asks to see a Roman coin.

Jesus asks his questioners to examine the coin. Agreeing that it is Caesar’s image on the coin, Jesus tells them that it must belong to Caesar. Avoiding the question of lawfulness altogether, Jesus answers their question with simple logic. Then, going further, Jesus tells them that their obligation is to pay to God that which belongs to God.

Jesus’ response to the Herodians and Pharisees suggests the ethic that Christians should adopt. It reminds us of the importance of keeping things in their proper perspective. Do we seek worldly possessions at the expense of the love and obedience that we owe to God?

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    Attention Men! The Men’s Fellowship, at Resurrection Parish, invites all men of the parish to our bi-monthly meetings on the first and third Wednesday of the month starting at 7:30pm in the Resource Room.  There will be light refreshments.

    We will meet in an informal setting discussing selections from James Campbell’s book “Every Man’s Journey.”All Men of the Parish are invited. If you have any questions or suggestions, please contact Deacon Rich at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 973-714-2952. 

     If you are not sure where Catholicism fits into your life, have questions about the faith, or just need your spiritual life reinvigorated this evening’s informal and confidential discussion may be what you’re looking for.

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651 Millbrook Avenue
Randolph, New Jersey 07869

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