Friday, 24 July 2020 Matthew 5:13-20
“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” -Matthew 5:16
Today’s Scripture portion is part of the Sermon on the Mount which is the longest recorded sermon of Christ. Here Jesus explains the traits or the character He intends to find in every disciple. He calls them blessed, those who possess these excellent qualities. Many of these traits may contradict the normal worldview and how the people of the world generally behave; but the reward for those who have them is eternal.
When Jesus spoke of being salt and light in this world, He was trying to convey something of great importance. These two metaphors are quite easy for anyone to understand in the qualities each possesses. Light diffuses darkness; salt gives taste to food. Christ Jesus desires each of us to be the salt of the earth and light for this dying (spiritually) world.
Though men of God were treated with contempt and subject to persecution, they were a blessing to this world (Matthew 5:11&12). They did so, not with the sword but through their silent work, just as the salt—making their influence silently felt by their life and deeds. The message of the gospel too, is like salt that is powerful and quick to penetrate, without which human life will not survive.
As followers of Christ we should not “diffuse” ourselves into the world, instead we should impact others positively just as seasoning with salt brings out the best flavor.
See some reference to salt in Scripture:
Colossians 4:6: Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one. Gracious and pleasant conversation can be engaging specially when winning others for Christ.
Mark 9: 50: “Salt is good, but if the salt loses its flavor, how will you season it? Have salt in yourselves, and have peace with one another.” If there is no saltiness in our character, then we cannot be at peace with others. (1 John 4:19 is clear to all – If anyone says, he/she loves God, yet hates his brother/sister, then he/she is a liar.)
John 8:12: Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.” Those who receive the light of life in them spread that light to others. Everyone welcomes the morning light at daybreak and so it is with the gospel and those who spread it— its light brings others from the darkness of sin into God’s marvellous light. Our good work should edify others and encourage them to live under the power of the gospel. It should lead them to glorify our Father in heaven and not us.
It is impossible not to see a city built on top of the hill. Light from it in the night is visible miles afar. So it is with us who live for Christ- the light in us shine to them that live in the dark. We should be able to glow and show others what Christ is like. Dear brethren, have salt in yourselves and do not hide your light by the way you live but let it shine that others may be led to the Light of the world- Jesus Christ!
Prayer: Heavenly Father let the salt and light in me be a life that influences others for Christ. Amen.