Family Bible Study:‘The Pharisees went out. They made plans to trap Jesus with his own words. They sent their followers to him. They sent the Herodians with them. “Teacher,” they said, “we know that you are a man of honor. You teach the way of God truthfully. You don’t let others tell you what to do or say. You don’t care how important they are. Tell us then, what do you think? Is it right to pay the royal tax to Caesar or not?” But Jesus knew their evil plans. He said, “You pretenders! Why are you trying to trap me? Show me the coin people use for paying the tax.” They brought him a silver coin. He asked them, “Whose picture is this? And whose words?” “Caesar’s,” they replied. Then he said to them, “So give back to Caesar what belongs to Caesar. And give back to God what belongs to God.” When they heard this, they were amazed. So they left him and went away. ‘ Matthew 22:15-22 https://my.bible.com/bible/110/MAT.22.15-22
- Who wants to read today’s story?
- Let’s do a scavenger hunt. Let’s write down a list of words in these verses that we don’t really understand and then look them up on google. What are some of the words you don’t understand? (PARENTS NOTE: here are some example words: Herodians, Caesar, Hypocrites, Pharisees. A quick tip, when googling words like these, add “first century” to your search terms. When looking up “Hypocrite,” add “greek actor” to your search to learn an interesting fact about the origins of that word.)
- Let’s retell this story in our own words. Let’s all work together to see if we can get all the details right, one of you check the story while the rest of us try and tell the parts of the story. (PARENTS NOTE: if you only have one child, just work with them to figure out the parts of the story)
- Why do you think the Pharisees are asking Jesus this question? (PARENTS NOTE: Jesus says they are trying to trap him with their question – this is because they know that the people HATE the Romans – imagine if our country was taken over by the Chinese. Not only do they hate the Romans, but they are forced to pay incredible amounts of money in taxes on everything. They are an oppressed people. The Pharisees are trying to get Jesus to say you should pay taxes in front of all the people so the people will turn on Him.)
- Have you ever had someone try and trick you and get you in trouble? How have you reacted to that?
- How does Jesus react? (PARENTS NOTE: He is SO genius! Jesus turns the situation around on the Pharisees and makes them answer the question for Him.)
- Let’s do another scavenger hunt. The coin Jesus had them bring him was a Denarius with an image of Caesar Tiberius. Let’s see if we can find a picture of one of the coins and what the inscription says. (PARENTS NOTE: The inscription on Caesar’s coin said that He was Augustus Tiberius, the son of the divine Augustus. Talk with your child about what the word Divine means – it means that they thought Augustus was god and Tiberius was the son of god. Talk with your child about how offensive this would have been to the Jewish people – it was idolatry a big sin talked about in the 10 commandments. It is also the title of Jesus – the Son of God – the real one.)
- SAY: Jesus tells them to give to Caesar what belongs to him (because it has his picture and inscription on it) and to give back to God what belongs to God, the Pharisees were people who claimed to love God with everything, but weren’t willing to do the things God really cared about – be kind to the poor, love those who no one likes, and care for those who were lost. When Jesus tells them to give back to God, He’s telling them they need to give their whole lives back to Him.
- What are the ways that we as a family can give back to God?
- Let’s go around the circle and each pray this morning. Let’s each pray for one of the other people in our family plus a friend.