We are two full weeks in! Good job to everyone who is tracking along. Go ahead and leave me a comment here on the blog to let me know how you are feeling!
Personally, I am feeling a little sore!
Today I ran with my faithful running buddy, Derrick Miller, at the Fredericksburg trail. Derrick and I have had a longstanding agreement that we will run from the trail head at 3pm on Monday afternoons every Monday that we are available. He is a great guy and a super fast runner (he has been the fastest male at the JPM 5k & Musik Fest for 3 out of the 4 years it has been going on -and he wasn’t able to be there for the fourth year). We always have a great conversation, and Derrick is a fellow #5kMay2018 participant, so today was another great run. We ran a total of 6.86 miles at an average pace of 7:23 per mile. We had a total moving time of 50 minutes and 43 seconds. I was glad to stretch out the miles a little bit, and though I started a little slower than I had hoped (our first mile was 7:45), I was able to get moving a little quicker by the end (7:08 by the end).
Derrick has been training for a 100 mile run this summer, and he has a big goal of running a 5k PR this weekend.
I read Mark 12-14 first thing this morning. The same passage stood out to me this year as last year. The emphasis was different last year, though. Here is the passage:
And they sent to him some of the Pharisees and some of the Herodians, to trap him in his talk. And they came and said to him, “Teacher, we know that you are true and do not care about anyone’s opinion. For you are not swayed by appearances, but truly teach the way of God. Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not? Should we pay them, or should we not?” But, knowing their hypocrisy, he said to them, “Why put me to the test? Bring me a denarius and let me look at it.” And they brought one. And he said to them, “Whose likeness and inscription is this?” They said to him, “Caesar’s.” Jesus said to them, “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” And they marveled at him. (Mark 12:13–17, ESV)
Last year I was amazed by the way that the Pharisees and some of the Herodians gave Jesus empty compliments in their attempt to trap him. It is sad, because the things they said about Him were true, but they failed to realize it. They were so close to the truth, but still missed it because their hearts were bent on evil.
Today I have been thinking more deeply on Jesus’ answer. “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s…” What’s that all about?
The denarius that Jesus was using as an illustration had the image of Caesar carved into it. It was made in the image of Caesar. Curious. The things that were made in Caesar’s image belong to Caesar, so pay your taxes.
That seems simple enough, but then He says, “…and [render] to God the things that are God’s.” What is the connection? Does God have His own money? Not exactly. American money says “In God We Trust”, so I guess our money belongs to Him… but that’s not exactly what Jesus was talking about.
So what is He talking about here? The denarius was made in Caesar’s image so it belongs to him. What was made in God’s image?
Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness…”
…So God created man in his own image,
in the image of God he created him;
male and female he created them. (Genesis 1:26–27, ESV)
We were made in God’s image.
The coin was made in Caesar’s image. It technically belongs to him. Give him what he asks for.
We were made in God’s image. We technically belong to Him. Give him what He asks for.
He has told you, O man, what is good;
and what does the LORD require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
and to walk humbly with your God? (Micah 6:8, ESV)
I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. (Romans 12:1–2, ESV)
God wants us. God wants you. Render to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and render to God what is God’s.
*5k Every Day in the Month of May 2018 is brought to you by Jeff Polen Music and Vertical Runner of Wooster. If you are joining the fun, don’t forget about the Facebook group, the Strava group, and the printable PDF.