Friday, 7th Week after Pentecost

Text: Matthew 22:15-22

Prayer Pointers:

For eyes to see the image of God in others

For a heart that is given over to God

For those who work in local government

WHOSE IMAGE IS THIS? WHOSE WORD? Jesus, holding the shiny coin, asks his accusers to identify the picture and the inscription upon it.

The Roman denarius circulating during this time would most likely have had a picture of Tiberius on the face side, and on the tail side the phrase “Tiberius, Son of the Divine Augustus, High Priest” in Latin. What the coin is declaring is that Tiberius is the son of a god and serves as the chief priest of the pagan Roman religion. At bottom, Jesus ably reveals his adversaries’ hypocrisy, for they are carrying these coins announcing a foreign god and his priest on the sacred ground of the Temple.

But we should not miss Jesus’ larger point here. What belongs to God? On what is his image? Where is his word found? For Christians, the answer to those questions should be obvious—we are the bearers of God’s image, we are the bearers of God’s holy word. We belong to God just as surely as those paltry coins belonged to the man who had them minted. We belong to God—as does Caesar, and every priest, and every religious authority, and every tax collector, and every face in the crowd. God is not thwarted but will have his own.

The day came when Tiberius died. The son of the exalted Augustus, the high priest of a solemn religion still lies buried; unless you have more than a passing interest in history, you probably don’t mention his name or think about him much.

The day also came when the Son of God died. And he got up in glory and entered into the heavenly places as our great high priest. There he presents those who bear his name and likeness to his Father and intercedes on their behalf. Remember to whom you belong.

May your day be grace-filled ~ Pr. Dave Brooks


Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church

824 N. Buchanan Blvd. 

Durham, NC 27701

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824 North Buchanan Blvd, Durham, NC 27701 | 919-682-6030  |

Mission Statement: We are called to Welcome Everyone to Walk the Way of GRACE, and walk in that way in our individual lives, in our shared life in our various communities, in our common life with our neighbors, and even to the world at large as God sends us. The Way of Grace is to: GROW with Jesus, REJOICE in God, ANSWER with hope, CARE for the neighbor, and EMBRACE community.

Vision Statement: God has a plan FOR OUR LIVES, and so we teach how to walk in the path of Jesus Christ; FOR OUR NEIGHBORHOODS, and so we work to build healthy and strong communities; FOR OUR CITY, and so we share life with our neighbors in Walltown, Trinity Park, Duke, and the Triangle; and FOR OUR WORLD, and so we go with Good News.

Core Values: Because God loves us first, we value worship rooted in Scripture and Sacraments, service to all people, and being a welcoming community that loves and forgives one another.