Meditation – 22nd October 2017

The Deep End – The third side of the coin
Most of us have been raised to believe that there are two
sides to every issue. So often we hear the term ‘there are
two sides to every story’ or ‘two sides of a coin’ but there
is, in fact, a third. A story always has your version, their
version, and the truth. When it comes to a coin, there is
the head side, the tail side, and the edge of a coin! One
side of the coin may represent a particular point of view;
the other its opposite. However, if we just stand the coin
on its edge, we can see both sides more clearly and, more
often than not, a third way.
What a loaded question the Pharisees’ disciples and the
Herodians asked Jesus. If Jesus said the taxes shouldn’t
be paid, he would have pleased the Pharisees but then
they could report him and have him arrested as a rebel. If
he said they should be paid, he would have gained the
support of the Herodians but almost certainly lost all
support from his followers.
But Jesus did not come into the world to discuss Roman
taxation, temporal revolutions or political action. Neither
did he come to only see two sides of a coin! He neither
endorses Caesar as divine sovereign (as the inscription on
the coin indicates) nor does he discourage the paying of
taxes. He simply reminds his questioners that these are
worldly affairs in a worldly kingdom but there is another
kingdom yet to come with a much higher authority. ‘Give
to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs
to God.

Julieann Moran
Society of Missionary Children