Barry Amundsen (26 Jan 2011)
"Jim Bramlett, thanks for the article on Who Owns This World, & Fishy Smelling Tribute Money"
Kudos Jim, for your article on who really owns the world.
It is good to be reminded and to have things put in perspective like that.
like to remember the way Jesus handled the situation of the tax that
was being demanded of Him and His disciples. He explained that in
truth, because He was who He was He didn't really have to pay this and
neither did His disciples because the children of the king are free and
don't owe tax.
24. And when
they were come to Capernaum, they that received tribute money came to
Peter, and said, Doth not your master pay tribute?
He saith, Yes. And when he was come into the house, Jesus prevented
him, saying, What thinkest thou, Simon? of whom do the kings of the
earth take custom or tribute? of their own children, or of strangers?
26. Peter saith unto him, Of strangers. Jesus saith unto him, Then are the children free.
Notwithstanding, lest we should offend them, go thou to the sea, and
cast an hook, and take up the fish that first cometh up; and when thou
hast opened his mouth, thou shalt find a piece of money: that take, and
give unto them for me and thee.
God owns the world and His
children should not have to pay any tax since kings demand tax of
strangers not of their own children. But Jesus did not even try to
explain all this to those who came to collect the tax. He said "Lest we
should offend them..." He knew that trying to explain it to this world
will not work for now (although that day is soon coming when He will
convict the ungodly of all their ungodly deeds etc.) He made sure that
Peter understood it and that was enough for now and instead He
instructed Peter to go fishing. This was something that Peter knew how
to do. The first fish Peter would catch was going to have money in its
mouth to pay the tax. Peter must have been excited to go and do this.
Either that or embarrassed if it turned out to be not true. Imagine if
there was no money there; he would have felt like a fool. But Peter
obeyed Jesus which is what faith is, and those tax collectors must have
been beside themselves to see this. The result is that Jesus and Peter
did submit themselves to the demands placed upon them by this wrong
world but Jesus did it in a way that required faith but not toil on
The point I wish to make is that I have
discovered that Jesus still does this today. We still have demands made
on us by this present world such as taxes. There are some Christians
and patriots who have risen up against this sort of thing and their
argument is that such claims on us are not legitimate and should not be
submitted to. I turn to this example and go ahead and submit myself to
the demands but I look for Jesus to provide enough to pay it and if it
smells like fish when I do, that's ok! Actually, Jesus doesn't have me
go fishing, He did that for Peter because it was what Peter knew how to
do. For me He provides for me by me doing my kind of work but it is
just as easy for me as finding money in the first fish was for Peter.
Peter must have laughed his head off when he looked inside that fish's
mouth and handed those men their money. Being Jesus' disciple is fun
because His yoke is easy and His burden is light!