Death and taxes

THERE are only two inevitable things in this world: death and taxes.

Noon pa mang unang panahon, galit na ang mga tao sa taxes. Ang taxes ay ang perang kinukolekta ng gobyerno sa kanyang mamamayan.

Kadalasan, ang perang ito ay ibinubulsa lamang ng mga corrupt sa gobyerno kasama mismo ang mga tax collector.

Dahil katatapos lamang ng Holy Week, basahin natin ang nasusulat ukol sa mga tax collector, sa wikang Ingles.

During the time of Jesus in first century Israel, there were publicans and tax collectors who could walk up to a man and tax him for what he was carrying, and much more.

These tax collectors were hated and despised because they were usually fellow Jews who worked for Rome.

There were many taxes needed from the provinces to administrate the Roman Empire.
These taxes paid for a good system of roads, law and order, security, religious freedom, a certain amount of self government and other benefits.

The publican is from the Latin word “publicanus,” and from the Greek word “telones” which mean a tax gatherer. The publican is mentioned quite often throughout the life of Christ.

Since Israel was under Roman rule, and part of a province of the Roman Empire, customs duties were farmed out to chief tax collectors (publicani). These chief tax collector’s also farm these duties over to the regular tax collectors.

In the eyes of Rome, the provinces were to carry the heavy weight of administering the Empire. Judea was in the province of Syria and every man was to pay 1% of his annual income for income tax.

But that was not all, there were also import and export taxes, crop taxes (1/10 of grain crop and 1/5 of wine, fruit, and olive oil), sales tax, property tax, emergency tax, and on and on. It was actually a Roman official (censor) who was ultimately responsible to Rome for collecting the revenue of the province, but he sold the rights to extort tax to the highest bidders.

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