Textual Tuesday

Textual Tuesday: Matthew 22:15-22

Preaching and sharing the Bible unites all of our churches, locally and beyond. Here are a few gatherings for the upcoming Sunday Bible readings as you study the Scriptures. Does this spark reflections, ideas or do you have something to share? Write a comment below!

See the Revised Common Lectionary readings for Sunday, October 22, 2017. The site also includes hymn suggestions, prayers and more.

The Pharisees decide to ask Jesus a “gotcha” question: Is it right to pay taxes to the Emperor Caesar or not? Jesus answers by showing a coin bearing the image of Caesar. His famous remark follows, “Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s; and unto God the things that are God’s.”

If it is the coin that bears the image of Caesar, then what is it that bears the image of God? In the Bible, God says that it is us, “Let us make humankind in our image, according to our likeness” (Genesis 1:26). Because of Sin, the image of God in us has been damaged and only God can restore it.

So, God send Jesus Christ, “who is the image of the invisible God” (Colossians 1:15). Jesus is a perfect image of God, for he never knew sin. Through faith, our lives can be “renewed…according to the image of its creator” (Colossians 3:10).

Below is a 2-minute video from the Art Institute of Chicago on how ancient Greeks made coins. Note the molten metal, fire (a symbol of the Holy Spirit) and stamped images.

Jesus Christ is the die, bearing the perfect image of God. The Holy Spirit fires up our hearts and souls, wiping out signs of previous wear, tear, hurt and damage. Then God has made us ready to become again what we were always meant to be: stamped with God’s image, ready to be rendered back to our Maker.

Other Bible passages about images

  1. Genesis 5:3
  2. Exodus 32:7–8
  3. Romans 8:28–30
  4. 1 Corinthians 15:42–49
  5. 2 Corinthians 3:17–18