3 questions to ask when feeling trapped by a question!

3 questions to ask when feeling trapped by a question!

Mark 12: 13-17

“Later they sent some of the Pharisees and Herodians to Jesus to catch him in his words. 14 They came to him and said, “Teacher, we know that you are a man of integrity. You aren’t swayed by others, because you pay no attention to who they are; but you teach the way of God in accordance with the truth. Is it right to pay the imperial tax to Caesar or not? 15 Should we pay or shouldn’t we?” But Jesus knew their hypocrisy. “Why are you trying to trap me?” he asked. “Bring me a denarius and let me look at it.” 16 They brought the coin, and he asked them, “Whose image is this? And whose inscription?” “Caesar’s,” they replied.17 Then Jesus said to them, “Give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s.” And they were amazed at him.”

3 questions to ask when feeling trapped by a question!

Have you ever been pushed into a corner with a question which was more of an accusation than a desire to learn from you?

Do you have experiences of leading questions? Questions that are trying to gently lead you to answer in a certain way.

Do you have experiences of loaded questions? Questions that are based on lies or presumptions.

How do we get through those difficult moments?

  1. Who is asking the question?

The Pharisees bring the Herodians to Jesus to ask the questions. As its name suggests, the Herodians were a sect of the Jews who supported Herod and Caesar, even thinking that Herod was the promised Messiah. Standing before Jesus are 2 opposite groups of people who do not believe nor do they follow him. There is no relationship at all. Before Jesus hears the question he knows they are here to entrap him.

  1. What is the pre-fix?

Before they ask the question they try to lull Jesus into their trust. They do this by recognition of title and acknowledging his work. They try flattery. Praise is important to us but it can be dangerous.

They call him Master, Teacher or Rabbi. They praise him for keeping true to God’s word and not pandering to man. They didn’t believe either of these statements.

  1. Why are they asking the question?

They want to place Jesus into the hands of angry Jews who hated Rome and would turn their backs on anyone who suggests supporting it or they want to put him in danger with the Romans for sedition against Caesar. In fact later we will see that one of the many accusations taking Jesus to the cross was that he opposed to paying taxes to Caesar and that he was claiming to be king not Caesar. The early church would face persecution for not bowing to Caesar in worship. So this is why they ask the question.

Before you ask the question, ask Who, What and Why?

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