Then the Pharisees went out and laid plans to trap him in his words. They sent their disciples to him along with the Herodians. "Teacher," they said, "we know that you are a man of integrity and that you teach the way of God in accordance with the truth. You aren't swayed by others, because you pay no attention to who they are. Tell us then, what is your opinion? Is it right to pay the imperial tax to Caesar or not?" (Matt. 22:15-17)Jesus recognized they were trying to trap him:
“You hypocrites, why are you trying to trap me? Show me the coin used for paying the tax."After Jesus asked for a coin, they gave him a denarius. Upon the denarius lay the inscription of Caesar.
"What portrait is this? And whose inscription? Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and give to God what is God’s.”
Jesus is stating that the servant of God can follow the rules of society and the government; and can live in the world without being of the world.
This is called detachment. One can utilize money and pay taxes and abide by the rules put forth by society.
“ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment.” (Matt. 22:37-38 and Deut. 6:5)
Why do churches need so much money? They need money to pay the professional teachers who earn salaries for their teachings, and lavish living quarters. They see their occupations as a means of salary and luxury, turning the giving of others into a business.
His objective was to serve the Supreme Being, and ask that people learn to love and serve God.
In fact, Jesus railed against the use of God's place of worship as a place of commercialism. He angrily turned over tables in the market on the temple grounds, saying:
"How dare you turn my Father's house into a market!" (John 2:16).
(For a translation of Jesus' statements from the Book of Matthew without institutional sectarian influence, see the Gospels of Jesus - translated from the original Greek texts.)