“ Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt has lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salt- ed? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.”
Following the beatitudes, Jesus gives us a couple of illustrations to help us see how we should affect the world around us. In our text for today, He says ‘we are to be the salt of the earth.
Now what is salt? Salt was a necessity of life in ancient times and thus great value was attached to it. Salt was so important that it was sometimes used for money. The Roman soldiers of Jesus’ day were at times paid with it. We still use the phrase saying that someone either is, or is not, “worth their salt.”
Salt act as a preservative, salt was important for survival because it was the only way they had to preserve meat; it prevents the meat from decaying and keeps it good to eat. Sait doesn’t make something good, it can only keep something from going bad.
Salt is an antiseptic dissolved in a glass of water to help kill the germs that cause a sore throat.
You don’t gargle with salt water to stay healthy you gargle to kill the germs.
Salt is a seasoning sprinkled on plain food to make it taste better, salt by its self doesn’t taste so good but when applied to food it makes it better.
And so when we apply all these into our life it becomes clear what Jesus wants us to do.
We are to act as a preservative in this world; we do this by being different in this world stopping the trend toward sin. We are to function as an antiseptic in this world i.e. by living faithfully not just stopping the trend to sin but turning the trend back to God. We do this when we have the op- portunity to help set the pace and agenda by which the world lives. We are to act as a seasoning agent. This is the fact that without God life becomes boring and causes people to seek every other sinfull thrill. Without God man is on a never ending quest for satisfaction and we are to quench that thirst by helping people to see there is a better way than this evil unproductive way.
Christians like salt can lose their usefulness. Jesus says that if the salt loses its flavor, it is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men. As Christians, we either making impact for good for God or they are making an impact for evil and the enemy. The way we live, the things we say the attitudes we entertain, the life style we adopt are continuously pro- ducing either positive or negative results in society. Our lives whether we are aware or not either count for God or against Him, there simply no middle ground.
To be effective, the salt had to be rubbed into the meat. In a similar way Christian’s are to allow God use them wherever he has placed them. To be salt, we do not have to be spectacular or sen- sational, we do not have to be successful by the world’s standard’s; we just have to affect our little corner of the world positively.
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Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations are taken from the New King James Version of the Bible.
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