When the ruling elite in Jerusalem tried to trip up Jesus and ask about the Roman tax burden, He famously deflected. “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” Jesus knew they weren’t really curious about tax policy; they just wanted an excuse to turn Him into a criminal.
Rather than Pharisees trying to trip us up, we have the federal tax code. While the Bible has less than 800,000 words, the federal tax code has close to 10 million.
In this week’s Reflection, Michael Quinn Sullivan says that throughout history taxes have been used by the ruling elite to harass and manipulate the people while enriching themselves and their cronies.