Render unto Caesar

Is it possible to render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s?  There doesn’t seem to be any distinction these days and it makes me uncomfortable.  Having a government free from the ties of religion doesn’t mean that it can’t be formed of Godly men and women.  What I think Jesus was saying by this phrase, is that our devotion to God is foremost and should guide all our actions, but God can never become beholden to a political structure or ideology.  I see that happening today.  Government is being personified as something that is monstrous and is in contrary to God.  But our government is structured to be by the people and for the people…and not just people who think a certain way.  That is what the founders of our country escaped.  Religious ideology shouldn’t shape the government, but shape the people who compose that government, and if you don’t think there is a difference…look at history and how so many atrocities were committed by claiming that this is what God wants.  I am frustrated when, because my political ideology may stand in opposition to another’s, it means somehow that I am less of a Christian.  No government can define my beliefs, those rules circumvent any other authority.  A government can dictate the rules of being an American, even when I don’t like those rules.  I have a choice, to vote my conscience in every election and make myself heard that way.  None of us will ever be satisfied completely rendering to Caesar what is demanded because it’s human nature to give only what serves our own good.  Rendering to God, however, demands that we put self aside and give whole heartedly what is asked of us.  That may be different for every individual depending on their experiences, but it doesn’t mean I am an less faithful than a group that claims to have God on their side.  My devotion to God defines who I am, but it doesn’t mean involvement in one particular political agenda.  We all called to different gifts and roles, and like the body with Christ as its head, we are all very different and never the same.   It would be nice once in awhile if people took that to heart.

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