HUWAG NAMANG WINNER-TAKE-ALL

Matthew 22:20-21 (NIV)
And he [Jesus] asked them, “Whose portrait is this? And whose inscription?” “Caesar’s,” they replied. Then he said to them, “Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.”

“Dapat ba kaming magbayad ng buwis kay Caesar?” was a very difficult question posed to Jesus in order to trap him. Kasi pag sinabi nyang dapat kang magbayad ng buwis, parang pinayagan nyang i-dominate ng Rome ang Israel. Pag sinabi naman nyang huwag magbayad ng buwis magiging rebelde siya’t makakasuhan. Magandang aral ang naging paliwanag ni Hesus, “Kay Caesar pala yang barya e di magbuwis kayo sa kanya. Pero hindi ibig sabihin na tatalikod kayo sa Israel at sa Dios. Gawin nyo ang tungkulin nyo sa gobyerno at sa Dios nang sabay; huwag nyong pag-isahin.”

WALANG EXEMPTED

Matthew 17:24-25, 27

…the collectors for the temple tax came to Peter and asked, “Does your teacher pay the temple tax?” “Yes, he does,” Peter answered. [Jesus said to Peter] “…But we don’t want to cause trouble. So go cast a line into the lake and pull out the first fish you hook. Open its mouth, and you will find a coin. Use it to pay your taxes and mine.”

Required ang bawat lalakeng twelve years and above sa Israel taun-taon na magbayad ng temple tax noong panahon ni Hesus. Dito kinukuha ang panggastos sa repairs ng gusali, sa pag-supply ng langis para sa mga ilawan, at para sa ikabubuhay ng mga taong full-time doon sa temple. Kaya itinanong si Peter. “Nagbabayad ba ang guro nyo ng temple tax o nagpapalusot?” Nang isinumbong ni Peter ito kay Hesus ay inutusan siya, “Para wala silang masabi, bayaran mo. Mangisda ka doon. Buksan mo yung bunganga ng isdang mahuhuli mo at ipambayad mo ang mga coins na makukuha mo para sa tax nating dalawa for the temple.” Even the Lord Jesus paid the temple tax. Walang exempted.

LOVING GOD

Mark 12:29-31
“…‘People of Israel, you have only one Lord and God. You must love him with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength.’ The second most important commandment says: ‘Love others as much as you love yourself.’…”

How do we love an invisible God? How do we love God who is spirit? How can that be accomplished? Parang madaling sabihin pero paano ba ito nagagawa? Hindi mo naman siya puedeng abutan ng kape. Hindi mo siya puedeng paglingkuran dahil wala naman siyang kailangan. Hindi mo siya puedeng alagaan dahil wala naman siyang sakit. How do you love God?

TRUTH AND TACT

John 4:16-18
Jesus told her, “Go and bring your husband.” The woman answered, “I don’t have a husband.” “That’s right,” Jesus replied, “…You have already been married five times, and the man you are now living with isn’t your husband.”

Jesus was truthful and tactful. Totoo ang sinasabi nya pero hindi nya kailangang i-present ang katotohanan sa isang mahapdi, masakit at maanghang na paraan. His speech was always diplomatic except on very few cases when his wisdom deemed it proper to be very emphatic.

OVERZEALOUSNESS

John 12:47
“I am not the one who will judge those who refuse to obey my teachings. I came to save the people of this world, not to be their judge.”

Like Jesus, we should not be judgmental. Do not judge people. Nang minsan, nagturo ang Panginoon at ang kanyang grupo sa isang bayan at ayaw silang pakinggan. Sabi ng mga disciples, “Lord, papaulanan na ba namin ng apoy ang barangay 58 na yan?” Sabi naman ni Lord, “Sobra kayong hot. Huwag. Hayaan nyo lang. Kung ayaw kayong pakinggan, move to the next town. Marami namang gustong makinig sa inyo e.” Nagkaroon lang ng konting kapangyarihan yung mga disciples gusto nang paulanan ng apoy yung ayaw makinig (tingnan ang Lucas 9:52-56).