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Tax Collectors


Bible verses about tax collectors

Tax collectors were evil, greedy, and corrupt people who charged far more than what was owed. These people were deceitful and unpopular just like how the IRS is very unpopular today.  


What does the Bible say?

1. Luke 3:12-14 Some tax collectors came to be baptized. They asked him, “Teacher, what should we do?” He told them, “Don’t collect more money than you are ordered to collect.” Some soldiers asked him, “And what should we do?” He told them, “Be satisfied with your pay, and never use threats or blackmail to get money from anyone.”

2. Luke 7:28-31 I tell you, of all who have ever lived, none is greater than John. Yet even the least person in the Kingdom of God is greater than he is!” When they heard this, all the people—even the tax collectors—agreed that God’s way was right, for they had been baptized by John. But the Pharisees and experts in religious law rejected God’s plan for them, for they had refused John’s baptism. “To what can I compare the people of this generation?” Jesus asked. “How can I describe them


They were considered bad

3. Mark 2:15-17 Later, he was having dinner at Levi’s house. Many tax collectors and sinners were also eating with Jesus and his disciples, because there were many who were following him. When the scribes and the Pharisees saw him eating with sinners and tax collectors, they asked his disciples, “Why does he eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?” When Jesus heard that, he told them, “Healthy people don’t need a physician, but sick ones do. I did not come to call righteous people, but sinners.”

4. Matthew 11:18-20 Why do I say people are like that? Because John came, not eating like other people or drinking wine, and people say, ‘He has a demon inside him.’ The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and people say, ‘Look at him! He eats too much and drinks too much wine. He’s a friend of tax collectors and other sinners.’ But wisdom is shown to be right by what it does.”

5.  Luke 15:1-7 Now all the tax collectors and sinners kept coming to listen to Jesus. But the Pharisees and the scribes murmured, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.” So he told them this parable: “Suppose one of you has 100 sheep and loses one of them. He leaves the 99 in the wilderness and looks for the one that is lost until he finds it, doesn’t he? When he finds it, he puts it on his shoulders and rejoices. Then he goes home, calls his friends and neighbors together, and says to them, ‘Rejoice with me, because I’ve found my lost sheep! In the same way, I tell you that there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over righteous people who don’t need to repent.”


Follow me

6. Matthew 9:7-11 And he arose, and departed to his house. But when the multitudes saw it, they marvelled, and glorified God, which had given such power unto men. And as Jesus passed forth from thence, he saw a man, named Matthew, sitting at the receipt of custom: and he saith unto him, Follow me. And he arose, and followed him. And it came to pass, as Jesus sat at meat in the house, behold, many publicans and sinners came and sat down with him and his disciples. And when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto his disciples, Why eateth your Master with publicans and sinners?

7. Mark 2:14 While he was walking along, he saw a man named Levi son of Alphaeus, sitting in the tax collector’s booth. Jesus said to him, “Follow me,” and he stood up and followed Jesus.



8. Luke 19:2-8  A man named Zacchaeus was there. He was the director of tax collectors, and he was rich. He tried to see who Jesus was. But Zacchaeus was a small man, and he couldn’t see Jesus because of the crowd. So Zacchaeus ran ahead and climbed a fig tree to see Jesus, who was coming that way. When Jesus came to the tree, he looked up and said, “Zacchaeus, come down! I must stay at your house today.” Zacchaeus came down and was glad to welcome Jesus into his home. But the people who saw this began to express disapproval. They said, “He went to be the guest of a sinner.” Later, at dinner, Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, “Lord, I’ll give half of my property to the poor. I’ll pay four times as much as I owe to those I have cheated in any way.



9. Luke 18:9-14  Then Jesus told this story to some who had great confidence in their own righteousness and scorned everyone else:“Two men went to the Temple to pray. One was a Pharisee, and the other was a despised tax collector. The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed this prayer: ‘I thank you, God, that I am not a sinner like everyone else. For I don’t cheat, I don’t sin, and I don’t commit adultery. I’m certainly not like that tax collector! I fast twice a week, and I give you a tenth of my income. “But the tax collector stood at a distance and dared not even lift his eyes to heaven as he prayed. Instead, he beat his chest in sorrow, saying, ‘O God, be merciful to me, for I am a sinner.’ I tell you, this sinner, not the Pharisee, returned home justified before God. For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”

10. Matthew 21:27-32 So they answered Jesus, “We don’t know.” And he said to them, “Neither will I tell you, then, by what right I do these things. “Now, what do you think? There was once a man who had two sons. He went to the older one and said, ‘Son, go and work in the vineyard today. ‘I don’t want to,’ he answered, but later he changed his mind and went. Then the father went to the other son and said the same thing. ‘Yes, sir,’ he answered, but he did not go. Which one of the two did what his father wanted?” “The older one,” they answered. So Jesus said to them, “I tell you: the tax collectors and the prostitutes are going into the Kingdom of God ahead of you. For John the Baptist came to you showing you the right path to take, and you would not believe him; but the tax collectors and the prostitutes believed him. Even when you saw this, you did not later change your minds and believe him.


No matter how corrupt the tax system is you must still pay your taxes.

11. Romans 13:1-7 Everyone must submit to governing authorities. For all authority comes from God, and those in positions of authority have been placed there by God. So anyone who rebels against authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and they will be punished. For the authorities do not strike fear in people who are doing right, but in those who are doing wrong. Would you like to live without fear of the authorities? Do what is right, and they will honor you. The authorities are God’s servants, sent for your good. But if you are doing wrong, of course you should be afraid, for they have the power to punish you. They are God’s servants, sent for the very purpose of punishing those who do what is wrong. So you must submit to them, not only to avoid punishment, but also to keep a clear conscience. Pay your taxes, too, for these same reasons. For government workers need to be paid. They are serving God in what they do. Give to everyone what you owe them: Pay your taxes and government fees to those who collect them, and give respect and honor to those who are in authority.

12. Matthew 22:17-21 Tell us, therefore, what You think. Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar or not?” But perceiving their malice, Jesus said, “Why are you testing Me, hypocrites? Show Me the coin used for the tax.” So they brought Him a denarius. “Whose image and inscription is this?” He asked them. “Caesar’s,” they said to Him. Then He said to them, “Therefore give back to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.”

13. 1 Peter 2:13 For the Lord’s sake, obey every law of your government: those of the king as head of the state.



14. Matthew 5:44-46 But I say to you, love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you, so that you will become children of your Father in heaven, because he makes his sun rise on both evil and good people, and he lets rain fall on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you have? Even the tax collectors do the same, don’t they?

15. Matthew 18:15-17 “If your brother sins against you, go and confront him while the two of you are alone. If he listens to you, you have won back your brother. But if he doesn’t listen, take one or two others with you so that ‘every word may be confirmed by the testimony of two or three witnesses. If, however, he ignores them, tell it to the congregation. If he also ignores the congregation, regard him as an unbeliever and a tax collector.



2 Chronicles 24:6 So the king called for Jehoiada the high priest and asked him, “Why haven’t you demanded that the Levites go out and collect the Temple taxes from the towns of Judah and from Jerusalem? Moses, the servant of the LORD, levied this tax on the community of Israel in order to maintain the Tabernacle of the Covenant.”


What can we learn from the tax collectors?

God shows no favoritism. It doesn’t matter if you are a corrupt tax collector, prostitute, drunkard, drug dealer, homosexual, liar, thief, drug addict, porn addict, Hypocrite Christian, wiccan, etc. Just like the prodigal child was forgiven you will be forgiven. Are you broken over your sins? Repent (turn from your sins) and believe the gospel! At the top of the page there is a link. If you’re not saved please click on it. Even if you are saved go to that link to refresh yourself with the gospel.

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