FRIENDS and SERVANTS of the WORD
Ninth Week of Ordinary Time
June 2, 2020
WORD of the DAY
So Jesus said to them, “Repay to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God.” They were utterly amazed at him. (Mark 12:, 17)
How shall I live this Word?
The trap is tightly stretched, no doubt about it: paying taxes to the Romans or not? Paying taxes is never a joy, but doing it to the invaders! The question is well posed and can be misleading: if Jesus says ‘yes’ He seems to endorse the Roman occupation. If He says ‘no’ He goes to the side of the violent who dream of a revolt. Despite the ambiguity of the question, Jesus comes out very well, as usual. He asks for a coin and, in turn, asks a question that destabilizes His interlocutors. He does not go into either of the two responses that the Jews would expect.
The Teacher asks to go further and speaks of the right of God, because this requirement pulls with it that of respecting the right of the emperor. Rereading this Gospel today we discover that the whole Christian tradition, as it is well written in the Letter to Diogenes, situates and engages us in dual citizenship: earthly and heavenly. To follow Jesus closely we must be good Christians and honest citizens at the same time..
During prayer today, I will ask the Lord to grant to me and especially to government leaders, the gift of the Spirit to collaborate in the construction of a new world.
The voice of Andre Louf, Theologian and Biblist
One day, every believer will have to make this choice: between Caesar and Jesus. Sometimes this choice is clear, but more often it is dense, dark, and subtle. But no Christian can avoid it entirely, because of these two, God and money, one cannot love one without hating the other.
Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, Via dell’Ateneo Salesiano 81, 00139 Rome, Italy E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.sanbiagio.org email@example.com Blog: livingscripture.wordpress.com Comment by Sr. Graziella Curti, FMA