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You Are the Salt of the Earth

In our daily meditations, we are continuing to look at the Sermon on the Mount. Some have regarded it as Jesus’ most popular sermon. It is certainly quoted often, even by those who are not followers of Christ. These sayings echo down through history, yet at the time, the people listening would not have realized the impact these words would have on generations to come. Jesus was imparting a new way of thinking and a new way of living to His followers. Matthew gives us what many scholars believe is a condensed version of Christ's teaching about how His disciples must live their lives and not grieve the Holy Spirit. Many Bible teachers think that Jesus spoke the eight Beatitudes (the "beautiful attitudes") and then expanded on them or fleshed them out by giving us examples of how the inner attitudes work in real-life situations. In other words, the rest of the Sermon on the Mount explains the Holy Spirit's operation at the core of the believer's life.


When Christ's disciples live according to the leading and guidance of the Spirit of God, there will be encounters with those who operate under a different spirit with attitudes in opposition to God. In our last daily meditation focusing mostly on the Beatitudes, Jesus spoke about the persecution that will come to believers when they live out the beautiful attitudes in their lives (Matthew 5:11-12), but how are we to respond to such persecution? Should we withdraw and hide from the world system, lick our wounds, and never confront the darkness again? No, as believers in Christ, we are the conscience of the world in which we live. If Christ’s followers allow this world to force its values upon us as believers, this world will be shaped by an evil agenda; however, if godly men and women stand up for truth, others will also gain the courage to stand against the darkness. Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life" (John 8:12). When we live our lives according to these beautiful attitudes, we point the way to Jesus, and hold out to others the Light of life. Regarding our response to persecution, Jesus gave us two metaphors as to how we respond to those who persecute us.


The Salt of the Earth

13“You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people's feet. 14“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. 15Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. 16In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven (Matthew 5:13-16).


Let’s talk first about salt. When Jesus walked on earth, salt was a valuable commodity. In the time of Caesar, Rome paid their soldiers in salt, and in ancient China, salt was second to gold in value. Even today, we talk of people being “worth their weight in salt." Why was salt so valuable? We will look at three things that Jesus could have been referring to in His metaphor of believers being like salt:


1). Salt spoke of purity. The Romans believed that salt was one of the purest things on earth because it comes from the whitest and purest properties, the sea, and the sun. They had a saying; “There is nothing more useful than sun and salt.” Jesus could have been saying that the believer was to be an example of purity to those around him, i.e., purity of speech and purity of life. Jesus taught that we would have to give account for every word that comes from our lips (Matthew 12:36), so how are you doing at bringing what issues from your mouth under the Holy Spirit’s control, for this is one of the marks of a mature believer in Christ (James 3:2). Salt also was a preservative as well as gave flavor to food. To keep this meditation to a three-minute read, we’ll carry on our thoughts about believers in Christ being the salt of the earth tomorrow.


This meditation is from a more complete study found at the following link:

The YouTube video teaching is at the following link:


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