Monday, April 14, 2014

God Wants You to Pay Your Taxes

Tomorrow is April 15, the deadline for paying your income tax. Did you know that it is God’s will for you to pay your taxes? You probably haven’t heard too many sermons on this because it’s not a popular topic, but it is in the Bible. Someone asked Jesus, “Is it lawful for us to pay taxes to Caesar, or not?” He answered, “Render to Caesar the things that are Ceasar’s, and to God the things that are God’s” (Luke 20:22, 25). Jesus was accused of being “a friend of tax collectors” (Luke 7:34), which means that He wasn’t continually fighting against them. Paul adds, “For because of this you also pay taxes...render to all what is due them: tax to whom tax is due…” (Rom. 13:6-7).

No one enjoys paying taxes, but these verses helped me realize that since the Lord wants me to pay my taxes, I can do it honestly in obedience to Him. It doesn’t matter whether or not you agree with how the government spends your money. I’m sure that many Christians in the early church didn’t agree with how Caesar spent their money either! The Lord wants you to pay your taxes, not because you agree with all government spending, but because that’s what He commanded us to do.

Here are a couple of suggestions: First, take every legal deduction that you are allowed, but don’t cheat on your taxes by claiming expenses that are not true. Remember, Jesus wants us to be honest. Second, pay your taxes as an act of obedience to God and it will give you a different perspective and motivation, which will take some of the pain out of it. You can pray, “Lord, I’m paying my taxes as an act of obedience because this is what You’ve told me to do.”

You might not agree with me on this topic, but as a follower of Jesus Christ I believe this is the right thing to do.
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