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Matthew 17:9-27, A Church Stewardship Program I Can Get Behind

Narrative Lectionary Key Verse for Today

However, so that we do not give offence to them, go to the lake and cast a hook; take the first fish that comes up; and when you open its mouth, you will find a coin; take that and give it to them for you and me.’
— Matthew 17:27

NL Daily Devotion for Thursday, March 21, 2019

by Daniel D. Maurer, Clergy Stuff

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You know how some church resource providers like to be hip and select a little passage out of scripture (and often out of context), and apply it to a new program that your church can get behind to achieve whatever goal?

I’d really love to see a stewardship program that would take today’s reading from Matthew seriously!

I mean, Jesus is just amazing! He basically tells Peter that you don’t really have to pay that temple tax, but, “Hey . . . for the sake of not offending them, go out and get a fish and open its mouth. There will be a coin there!”

I suppose, though, the point Jesus made and what we need to read is that all human constructs of taxes, accounting, even money itself, are only temporary necessities. The real message is that the love of God is what matters and will sustain us for eternity.

Kind of amazing, though, to place all your trust in an amorphous conception such as the love of God, though, right?

Personally, I wish that I could catch fish, open their mouths and extract a coin. It would be a great career in my opinion!

Where does the love of God end and our own human structures begin? How best can we sustain our faith communities if not with money, then with the ever-giving grace of God?