There are two stories here – both take a little thought to understand. The story of the Banquet makes sense until the end – people have refused the call of the King (Jesus), and now the “unexpected” are invited and come. But there is a problem – someone has insulted the king by not even dressing up. Everyone had some dress clothes, and to not come dressed well was a huge insult – more insulting than turning down the invitation. The idea here is that we can’t take the invitation of God for granted, and so many of us do.
The second story is a trap for Jesus – if He said pay taxes – then He would be portrayed as sympathetic to Rome, a pagan occupier in God’s land. If He said no – He could be reported to Rome as a traitor. Jesus uses wisdom, and also teaches a powerful point. Give Caesar back his coin – it has his image on it. Give God back YOURSELF – you are made in His image.
When we give to God we are always giving BACK. He has given us everything good we have, everything we are. As we give back to Him and grow in generosity, we become more and more alive – growing closer to the Author and Source of all life.