We know the story well. Jesus has a triumphal entry into Jerusalem, heralded and hailed with waving palms. We assume that some of these people would have been among the throng shouting “Crucify him!” mere days after.
Under the boot of the Roman Empire, there was dissatisfaction and suffering: a grain toll, taxes on produce, sales taxes, temple taxes, occupational taxes, custom taxes, transit taxes.
According to the website Theology Curator, “…it is clear that Augustus and his successors made it their goal to collect as much money in the form of tax revenue as possible, causing a great divide between the economic elite and the ninety-seven percent of those in the Empire who lived in some degree of poverty.”