Someone once told me that there are only two things certain in life and that they are death and taxes.
At the time I understood the death part but I was too young to fully understand taxes. Now that I am older I completely get it.
Taxes are everywhere and they are inescapable.
A coin that is thought to be similar to the coin that Jesus used to state, "Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar's and unto God the things that are God
Jesus and Taxes
From the beginning of the Gospels, we see that Jesus and His family were taxed. The trip that Mary and Joseph made to Bethlehem while she was heavily pregnant with Jesus was a result of taxes. When Jesus was born, Mary offered the sacrifice that was to be made for each first born son, after the days of purification had passed. (Luke 2:21-39)
In the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke, Jesus was asked if it was lawful to pay taxes to Caesar or not. The Bible says that this was said in order to trick Jesus but His reply of, "Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's; and unto God the things that are God's" stunned them instead and they walked away. (See Matthew 22:15-22, Mark 12: 13-17, Luke 20: 20-26)
In another instance, Jesus paid taxes for Himself and Peter after Peter told those asking for tribute that Jesus paid it.
"And when they were come to Capernaum, they that received tribute money came to Peter, and said, Doth not your master pay tribute?
He saith, Yes. And when he was come into the house, Jesus prevented him, saying, What thinkest thou, Simon? of whom do the kings of the earth take custom or tribute? of their own children, or of strangers?
Peter saith unto him, Of strangers. Jesus saith unto him, Then are the children free.
Notwithstanding, lest we should offend them, go thou to the sea, and cast an hook, and take up the fish that first cometh up; and when thou hast opened his mouth, thou shalt find a piece of money: that take, and give unto them for me and thee." Matthew 17:24-27
In this case, Jesus not only paid taxes for Himself but also for another.
I don't think anyone in their right mind would say that they like taxes but some would say, albeit grudgingly, that taxes have their place in this world because when handled properly, they can benefit an entire nation.
Roadways, water supplies, housing for low income families, are made possible around the world because of taxes.
Today,many people have the privilege of saying that paying their taxes gives them a 'say' as to how the money is used to better their respective countries.
When governments announce that they will use a certain amount toward a cause that is unpleasing to the masses (or even a minority) then they protest in the hopes that the government will rethink its investment plan and redirect it elsewhere.
Taxes, it seems, are a necessity regardless of the type of government.
Getting out of paying taxes
I think it is fair to say that there have been many instances where people try their best to avoid paying taxes. I have read quite often about celebrities who have accumulated massive amounts of wealth caught trying to avoid paying taxes.
I suppose there is the thought that something that rightfully belongs to them is being taken away from them rather than the thought that they are being asked to pay back a debt owed.
Cristiano Ronaldo is one of the latest celebrities to be caught up in a tax evasion scandal.
The tax of death
Although there are some who try to escape taxes, there is one tax that has to be paid and that is the tax of death.
Since sin entered the world, the consequence of sin, death entered as well. We were all obliged to pay the tax of death for our sins and face it eternally but Jesus conquered death and made it so that it is not the end anymore for those who belong to Him. Just as He paid the tax for Peter and Himself, He paid the tax for us.
Death was the way to perdition but now it is possible to escape perdition and the depths of Hell because of Christ, Jesus.
When it comes to paying taxes, God shows that there are taxes that must be paid. Since we were rendered incapable of paying our own taxes according to the law and kept defrauding the law, God had to pay it for us or else we would have been condemned forever.
Based on God's own action when it comes to the tax of death I believe it is safe to say that taxes must be paid either by yourself or by someone who will pay for you. Since the ultimate tax has been paid for me, I am eternally grateful to the One who paid it.
© 2018 North Wind
Umesh Chandra Bhatt from Kharghar, Navi Mumbai, India on December 04, 2019:
Interesting article. Nice reading. Thanks.
North Wind (author) from The World (for now) on November 12, 2018:
@ Tsad, yes, taxes accumulated should be spent on things that give and bring life. Unfortunately, as we live in a fallen world, mankind keeps wanting to have the power of God and misuse does and will continue to occur until He comes to set things straight once and for all.
@ Eric Dierker, I find that in my case, complaining has never helped one bit. I live everyday in gratefulness knowing that God has blessed me with one more minute to glorify His name among men. My greatest concern is how much more can I give Him the glory He deserves.
Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on November 09, 2018:
You are great here. A wonderful thoughtful area written well about. My silly wife and I and our son live in California. I think we are pretty socialist. But we have the greatest life in the world. Perhaps that is for some partial reason that we render unto Ceasar. I hear people complain.
I suppose because I am so young I just have not figured it out yet.
The Logician from then to now on on November 09, 2018:
Great thought provoking article Northwind!
I think the attention given to paying taxes, too much taxes, not enough taxes, paying your fair share...all this misdirection can be solved by simply putting all the attention on how the taxes are spent! Fix that and superfluous government shrinks, taxes go down and what is collected isn't wasted!
Spiritually it is similar. The tax Jesus paid is spent on our salvation, the most valuable expenditure anyone can imagine. The example of how our mortal tax dollars should be spent, on things that give life, not death.