Sunday, August 20, 2006

Salt and Light

Christ said, “You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men.” (Matt 5:13)

What does this mean to us today? We know that salt is used for flavour enhancement today and especially in 1st century Palestine it was used for preservation. But Christ called us who follow Him ‘the salt of the earth’. We are the preservative of the world around us and we are to apply it daily and liberally. If we water it down or dilute it we become weak and useless. We are to retain the essence, strength and value that we were meant to be – otherwise we are useless. He wants us to continue being of use as a preservative to the world. However, some Christians wrongly get the idea that they have the pious and legalistic right to apply ‘salt’ in every situation in disregard of the other person’s needs or situation. May we apply ourselves as salt with gentleness, compassion, in the right dosage and not throw salt in raw, open wounds.

Christ expounds further and calls us “You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven”. (Matt 5:14-18)

If we are to be the light that God wants us to be we should use it appropriately and effectively. We are to shine to illuminate and show people God – not to illuminate ourselves. By doing good deeds people will see God (not us) and give the praise to Him (not us).

May we use the light of God as He wants to – as a lamp that gives light to everyone. Too often that same light is thrust full glare into the eyes and thus blinding people against God. In order to show someone the way to God we need to light the path not blind the eyes.

In all this striving to be salt and light may we do this with love and compassion. Being careful to avoid open wounds and not shove blinding light into their eyes.


At 8:48 am, Blogger Lynne said...

great post!
just a thought -- I've wondered about this passage if one of the characteristics of being salt isn't to make people thirsty for Jesus?

At 10:08 am, Blogger Lord Veritas said...

I had only heard of that concept of the use of salt to make people thirsty for God only recently however I don't think it was used in that context. I agree that salt can make us thirsty and don't mean anything really wrong with the metaphor apart from the fact it is the Holy Spirit that does the moving and convicting of people of sin and their need for Christ and His redemption. I think it's more to the point of living a life worthy of our calling that others will see and recognise Christ and then with the Holy Spirit lead them to God.

At 10:43 pm, Blogger Ab Truth said...

i always saw the salt thing as being a preservative (salted meat lasts a long time) and that without the salt of Christ operating in the world through his disciples the world would go rotten that little bit quicker


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