12 Weeks of Prayer Week 2 Day 5
THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CAESAR’S AND GOD’S
By Pastor Mike Heil
TOH The Unapologetic Theologian
“Then render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s; and to God the things that are God’s.”
The evil one has pushed our culture towards stifling and serious new persecutions of the saints. Just recently the Democrats in congress passed legislation, which if made into law, would legalize many sins, while at the same time leveling penalties for using the proper Godly terms of “male” and “female.” Christian groups on university campuses are being intimidated and shut down in a perverted application of the First Amendment. We have congressmen calling God “she” while another Democratic congressman boldly stated, “God’s will is of no concern to this congress.” After taking over the government last month, the Democrats are making a mad dash at warp speed to being an ungodly social agenda to America; an agenda that includes persecution of Bible-believing saints who follow Christ as Lord. As this happens, how is the body of Christ (the church) to react? Does the church have any protection from a government now focused on criminalizing their faith in God?
In Matthew 22, our Lord was confronted by the Pharisees and the Herodian’s who weren’t attempting to trap him publicly before the Jews. They wanted to embarrass and push Jesus into a corner where the Jews would turn on him. So they asked him a question about how the Jews should handle the government oppression by the Romans. If he answered and said that they should pay the tax, he would be supporting the Roman government control of the Jews. The Jews, of course, were against this. If he answered and said that the Jews should not pay the tax, he was publicly fostering rebellion against the Roman government. Of course, the Romans would be very angry at that. So Jesus and the wisdom of the Holy Spirit, came up with the right and perfect answer saying: “render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and render unto God the things that are God." In this answer Jesus presented not only a sage response to the trap the Pharisees had set, but he established the spiritual principle that God and human government are two different things. With the aggressive posture that Satan is fostering in the American government today, it is important that the saints of Jesus Christ know this principle. God has established human government, that happened way back in Genesis 8 and 9, when God gave a new covenant that Noah and his family were to walk in upon the earth. Today, human government is still a function of God’s authority. Romans 13:1-7 shares that God establishes government to protect the righteous by punishing the wicked.
Since our spiritual life with God through Jesus Christ is one thing, and human government is another thing, we need to realize our protection is a function and blessing associated, first and foremost, with God and not human government. Fourteen separate times in Scripture, God reveals that He is a refuge for the saints. Many times, in those same verses He declares that He is also a fortress, a rock, and a very present help in the time of need. We also have many examples in the Old Testament where the saints in the Old Testament were divinely protected by God: Joseph, David, Elijah, and Daniel are just a few examples. So one of the blessings of our covenant relationship with God through Jesus Christ is the covenant right to God’s protection over our life. How that may play out in the light of the new governmental persecution of the church, is yet to be seen. God doesn’t give us all the details of how He will accomplish His protection, but He expects us to act in faith knowing He will protect us. We can look in the Old Testament and see some of the methods God used to protect the Old Testament saints, He shut the mouths of lions. He brought awareness to leaders in Egypt so that Joseph was let out of prison. He provided a cave for David, and He sent birds to feed Elijah. You and I can expect the same type of protection, and more when it is necessary during our day and age.
I believe we are walking as the church in a time never seen in American history. Never before in American history has the federal government looked to establish laws which will specifically criminalize godly and righteous behavior. So, Brothers and Sisters, we will be in some uncharted territory. However, the Holy Spirit will give us divine wisdom of how to move during this time. This is another blessing of the covenant relationship we have through Jesus Christ. We will receive, quickly and easily, what words to say and what actions to take as we are confronted by the persecution in America. Jesus said to the Jews, “Now when they bring you to the synagogues and magistrates and authorities, do not worry about how or what you should answer, or what you should say. For the Holy Spirit will teach you in that very hour what you ought to say.” This is a truth that you and I can expect by faith in our lives. When, and if, the time comes where we need to stand upon God’s truth the Holy Spirit within us will give us the proper words to speak. The Holy Spirit within us will bring revelation of how we are to walk. Let us not struggle and become anxious in the light of the continued persecution upon the church, but let us thank the Lord that He will protect us and sustain us. Let us also know, as they persecuted our Master so we will also receive persecution. Selah.
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