Setting a trap!
Scripture reading for April 7th: Judges 1-3, Psalm 16, Luke 20
Luke 20: 19-25 “The scribes and the chief priests sought to lay hands on him at that very hour, for they perceived that he had told this parable against them, but they feared the people. So they watched Him and sent spies, who pretended to be sincere, that they might catch Him in something He said, so as to deliver Him up to the authority and jurisdiction of the governor. So they asked Him, “Teacher, we know that you speak and teach rightly, and show no partiality, but truly teach the way of God. Is it lawful for us to give tribute to Caesar, or not?” But He perceived their craftiness, and said to them, “Show me a denarius. Whose likeness and inscription does it have?” They said, “Caesar’s.” He said to them, “Then render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and to God the things that are God’s.””
The scribes and chief priests thought that they were the very picture of righteousness. Their pride in their knowledge of Scripture and position of authority caused them to be puffed up. They viewed Jesus as a threat to their power and position and felt they must do something to expose Him and do away with Him. Notice that they ‘feared the people.’ The fear of man is a snare. (Proverbs 29:25) The people loved Jesus and were following Him and listening to His teachings. They sent spies, who ‘pretended to be sincere.’ They were bent on trapping Jesus in some act of rebellion against the government. They questioned Jesus about giving tribute to Caesar. Jesus in turn asked them a question–who’s inscription was on the coin? As they answered, Jesus told them to render to Caesar the things that were his, and to God likewise! Jesus answered with wisdom and avoided their trap.
Psalm 16:11 “You make known to me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.”
Prayer: Father, Thank You for making known to me the path of life, in Jesus Christ our Lord. I give to God praise, honor and worship as well as my body as a living sacrifice. Keep me from the fear of man and from pretense and deception. Open my ears to Your truth and prompt me to obedience through the Holy Spirit. Help me to pass each test of my devotion and love for Jesus through faith and grace!
Judges 2:21-23 “I will no longer drive out before them any of the nations that Joshua left when he died, in order to test Israel by them, whether they will take care to walk in the way of the Lord as their fathers did, or not.” So the Lord left those nations, not driving them out quickly, and He did not give them into the hand of Joshua.”