What Jesus Did! 'Taxes?' — Matthew 17:24-27

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Jesus and his followers went to Capernaum. In Capernaum some men came to Peter. They were the men that collected the two-drachma tax. They asked, "Does your teacher pay the two-drachma tax?" Peter answered, "Yes, Jesus pays the tax." Peter went into the house where Jesus was. Before Peter could speak, Jesus said to him, "The kings on the earth get different kinds of taxes from people. But who are the people that pay the taxes? Are these people the king's children? Or is it other people that pay the taxes? What do you think?" Peter answered, "The other people pay the taxes." Jesus said, "Then the children of the king don't have to pay taxes. But we don't want to make these tax collectors angry. So {pay the tax in this way}: Go to the lake and fish. After you catch the first fish, open the fish's mouth. Inside its mouth you will find a four-drachma coin. Take that coin and give it to the tax collectors. That will pay the tax for you and me."
— Matthew 17:24-27 NLT
Illustration of Matthew 17:24-27 NLT — "Does your teacher pay the two-drachma tax?"

Key Thought

What a weird story and even more strange is why it would be placed here in the flow of the narrative. But it is here as a reminder to us that we do live in an earthly world with earthly obligations and earthly influences. While our values and our Messiah's glory may not be displayed in a way that the world understands, our responsibility to be good citizens and to participate in society is essential. We can't influence people to come to Christ if they don't respect our desire to be people of integrity as we reflect the character of our Savior in the world in which others live.

Today's Prayer

Loving Father, please protect my influence from the harm that comes from slanderers and evil critics who want to do away with my Christian influence. Please forgive me for my past transgressions, cleanse me and make me holy, and empower me to follow Jesus with bold courage and faithful integrity. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Matthew 12:15-22
  • 1 Corinthians 14:19-21
  • Romans 13:7


About This Devotional

What Jesus Did! is a series of one-year devotional guides through each gospel, using one short scripture passage each day and following the Gospel in sequential order. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage and a reflection and a prayer which open up the day's scripture and show how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.