Today, as we celebrate World Mission Sunday, we are called to meditate on the issue of paying taxes to the foreign sovereign and on Jesus' response 'hypocritic' . Apparently a question of fact, with a bad thought behind it. No wonder Jesus approached this question with courage and decided to treat it with all due respect to the coin and its holder. While dealing with the issue, Jesus invites them to participate in the resolution of the problem by asking them to bring a coin.
Jesus is not a revolutionary, he is there to do God's will. Since the civil authorities are there to help and accompany us, God cannot deny their rightful role in today's society. Thus, Jesus invites them to look at the civil authorities with the respect due to them and to honor them for their usefulness and service. He reminds them that they hold something useful and important and asks them to give it what is due to them.
If God wants us to respect civil authority, it is not blind obedience, but an intelligent approach, discerning what is useful and genuine, for human development. To give to Caesar what belongs to him is a general statement with a very rich implication that we can apply in every spear of life. To give to each one of them, not only for what he is able to give or to give, is simply for what he is. In this sense, our approach to the preservation of creation is only an evangelical duty.
How can we understand the expression "to give to God what belongs to God" when everything that exists belongs to God? As a Christian and believer, I understand this as the best divine teaching, at the heart of all that is visible and invisible. To give to God is to give oneself fully to the service of God. It is a status of awareness of our divine identity and a concrete commitment as a baptized Christian. It is to be constantly aware of the ongoing impulse of the Holy Spirit in our bodies, God's dwelling place. It is there that we become aware of our calling, dedication and mission. Called, chosen and sent by God to the whole world. To give to God what belongs to God is also to nourish our desire and thirst for God. Believing that our very existence depends on God's generosity and goodness.
On this Mission Sunday, I wish to invite you all to pray with me. "In celebrating this Eucharist, we want, Lord, to give back to you what belongs to you. We offer you all the acts of faith, hope and charity that enamel our lives and those of all our brothers and sisters. With you, we commit ourselves to do everything so that love may prevail over hatred and violence. Be with us so that the Gospel may be proclaimed throughout the world. Amen".