Leo Tolstoy Archive

The Teaching of Christ Narrated for Children
Chapter 23

Written: 1908
Source: From RevoltLib.com
Transcription/Markup: Andy Carloff
Online Source: RevoltLib.com; 2021

Leo Tolstoy

Once the collectors of church donations approached Peter and asked him: “What about your teacher, will he pay what is expected?” Peter said that he will pay. And, Jesus, having heard that, said to Peter: “What do you think, Peter, from whom does the king take dues – from his sons or from strangers?” Peter said “From strangers.” “So, if we are the sons of God, then we don't have to pay dues. But in order not to temp them, give it to them, but not because we have to pay, but only to avoid driving them into sin.”

Another time the Pharisees got together with royal officials and came to Jesus to take him at his word, whether he would refuse from the obligations before the king. They said to him: "As you teach everything based on truth, tell us, do we have to pay taxes to the king or not?” Jesus said to them: “Show me with what you pay your dues to the king.” They showed him a coin. On the coin there was an image of the emperor. Jesus pointed to this image and said: “Give to the king what belongs to the king; only what is of God, your soul, do not give to anyone except God. Money, property, labor, give all of that to anyone who will ask you of that, but do not do for anybody anything that is contrary to the law of God.” (Matthew 17, 24-27; 22, 15-22)

1) How did the collectors ask Jesus to donate for the church?
2) What did he say?
3) How did the Pharisees test Jesus in regards to dues to the king, and what did Jesus say?