Scripture Passage: Matt 22:15-22 (NIV, parallel texts Mk 12 & Lk 20)
•Jesus is a Rabbi of much repute, his teachings had caught peoples attention and his miraculous powers had furthered his legislation among the people of Israel  (Matthew inclines towards asserting Christ as King)
•According to the Talmud 613 mitzvot are in the Torah, 248 positive ("thou shalt") mitzvot and 365 negative ("thou shalt not") mitzvot
•The word halakha is derived from the Hebrew root halakh – "to walk" or "to go”, Rabbi's hence would be the people would go to with questions regarding social and justice issues

•Things aren’t going great for the Pharisees with Jesus around (Mt 21:45,46)
•So desperate is their need to trap Jesus that they team up with the Herodians with whom they were no great friends either
•They come up with a plan to trap Jesus with respect to an interpretation of a Jewish charter… “Curve Ball/Googly”

The Trap & The Bait:
•A tax imposed by the Romans in 6 AD on subjects and not Roman Citizens
•Every Judean had to pay a denarius each year in Roman currency
•They use flattery before they bowl their googly…but they are setting boundaries within which they seek their response from Jesus
•This was a trick question…if ‘yes’ you do not align with Jewish nationalistic virtues, if ‘no’ you are a rebel against Rome
Jesus In Action
•Jesus was not a new kid on the block, he was not just a Rabbi he was King of the very Kingdom he came to usher in (Mt 4:17)
•He chides them and asks for a coin, turning a question upon them
•The inscription on the coin signified ownership
•Their response, got a response that could not put Jesus in any of the two categories in which they had planned to trap him
•Do we just marvel at Jesus’ amazing response like they did?

Kingdom Citizen Mindset
•Peter asks the church to understand that our governments are God appointed  (1 Pe 2:11-25)
•We establish the worship of Christ in our dealings and behavior as citizens of earthly governments
•Primary to our cause is still Christ and his mandate, but there are fundamental obligations to fulfill in our earthly citizenship that exalt God's rule on earth
Take Away: Glorify Christ in and through your earthly citizenship