3-Week Series: Double Blessing


Summary: The ability to answer wisely may not persuade the hardened opponents of the Gospel, but God can use those answers to glorify himself and perhaps to reach out to others who hear the discussion.

Death and Taxes

(Mark 12:13-27)

1. I cannot say I enjoy making payments. Fortunately, I do not have a car payment, but I have a mortgage and I have bills.

2. Ministers are considered self-employed for purposes of social security, but employed by the church for purposes of income tax.

3. The bottom line is that I have to make quarterly payments for income tax/social security. I cry all the way to the mailbox.

4. Death and taxes are sure things, except for death. One group of believers will not die, those who are alive when the Lord returns to the clouds. And believers who do die will not experience the second death but have their bodies resurrected, and their souls are currently with the Lord.

5. Jesus’ enemies sought to trap him with questions about death and taxes, but He answered with amazing insight and truth; He answered wisely.

Main Idea: The ability to answer wisely may not persuade the hardened opponents of the Gospel, but God can use those answers to glorify himself and perhaps to reach out to others who hear the discussion.

I. Main-Player Enemies Who Hated One Another CO-OPERATED Against Jesus.

A. The Pharisees (probably of Shammai) and HERODIANS


C. Jesus did not FIT IN with any pre-existing camp.

D. Have you ever wondered why mainstream media supports all views except evangelical CHRISTIAN?

1. They are okay with Islam, even though it denigrates women

2. They are fine with Atheism and seem to prefer Agnosticism

3. They are fine with Liberal Protestantism and Liberal Catholicism

4. They hate Evangelicalism and conservative Catholicism

5. They like the weakened Jesus of false religion, a Jesus who is not God incarnate, who is nice, feminine, and condemns no one.

6. The Biblical Jesus says “Go and sin no more, “ not, “What you are doing is not for me to judge as to whether it is right and wrong.”

II. The Issue of Paying TAXES to Rome Was a Powder-Keg Attempt to Trap Jesus

A. No one argued about paying taxes to ISRAEL.

B. Israel was oppressed by Rome: should Jews OBEY Roman laws?

Some things the Jews refused to obey and would surrender their lives (idolatry)

Many nations and people groups have been under similar pressures…

My forefathers in Slovakia: part of the Hungarian Branch of the Austrian-Hungarian empire; my grandparents learned Hungarian in school…They actually returned the Slovaks backwards toward feudalism…Hapsburgs very cruel

The Chechnia region of Russia doesn’t want to be part of Russia…

Difference: Israel was God’s nation, unlike Slovakia, Chechnia, and even the US

C. Herodians said Yes, Pharisees of Shammai said NO!

D. Jesus response was AMAZING.

E. We, too, struggle with related messy ISSUES.

1. The principle: we owe support to our nation, but we owe God our entire heart…

2. We may not approve of how our government spends money

3. We may not approve of being under the control of godless people

4. Like the Romans, the government may try to force us to violate our consciences

5. Issues like the draft, quotas, or the display of manger scenes are but a few

6. Augustine developed the concept of the City of God, and Luther developed this further: two kingdoms in which all believers are called to participate.

7. Biblical pattern: submit to government except if God DEMANDS otherwise

III. The Resurrection Issue Was An Attempt to Question Jesus’ COMPETENCE.

A. Jesus’ teachings had given them no FAULTS to exploit

B. The Sadducees had created a test case that was the perfect STORM

C. Jesus’ MIDRASH from the Torah knocked their socks off

D. Jesus’ ability to handle the Scriptures was IMPRESSIVE (see 28)

E. Your ability to handle the Scriptures may not win your opponents over, but God can use it to touch OTHERS who hear.

• Peter and I were talking — most of us have done enough Bible study — just from participating in church/Sunday school, reading through, radio — to log in the time it takes to get a doctorate in most fields

• Many of you don’t realize how much you know, how much you have learned

• It’s a matter of sharing with others…

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