Are you paying too much tax?

Income Tax (CREDIT

Income Tax (CREDIT

This week a major leak of documents in Panama showed how much effort people can make to try and pay less tax.

Whether it’s tax avoidance, tax evasion, or even downright money laundering, it’s clear that everyone involved in these schemes has been keen to reduce the amount of money they pay to the government so that they can increase the amount of money they keep for themselves.

Some would say that this kind of behaviour is acceptable because it is legal. Yet, there are many activities that are also legal yet are not morally desirable (such as prostitution).

The Bible is clear that we should pay to the Government the amount for which we are legally obliged. We should obey the tax laws as much as we should obey any other laws of our land.

Yet, is there a place to volunteer to pay more taxes than we owe? Should we try to maximise our tax rather than minimise it?

Well, given that a reasonable amount of our taxation goes towards providing universal access to healthcare, education and welfare, it might be a good thing for us all to volunteer to pay a bit more to help those valuable causes.

Or alternatively, maybe we Christians might consider paying come of the tax we ‘save’ in our refund directly into a charity that provides additional care for the more needy in our world, such as Anglicare and Anglican Aid?

Imagine if the money that was saved by the Panama tax avoiders was invested in helping support the resettling of Syrian refugees, or providing relief for those affected by the Ethiopian Famine?