Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. (Matthew 5:13)
Today in our study of the Sermon on the Mount, we transition from the Beatitudes to the practical application of living in the world as citizens of Christ’s heavenly kingdom. Each of us that have received Christ as Saviour has been translated from the kingdom of darkness into the kingdom of light. A change has taken place in which we have been raised from our spiritual death in the corruption of sin to spiritual life in the holiness and righteousness of Christ.
This change affects our relationship with the world. According to the last beatitude, it invites persecution because there is a vivid contrast between our way of living and the world’s way. Jesus depicts this contrast in Matthew 5:13 through a similitude. He compares Christians to salt. Salt is a savory substance that changes the way food tastes. It improves the taste; it takes what is bland and unsavory and makes it palatable.
Similarly, Christians are to influence the world for good. We can help retard the corruption of the world by seasoning it with righteous living. One more sinner saved is one more sinner that no longer adds to the world’s corruption. At least this is the way it should be. But sadly, there are many Christians that lapse into sin and lose their godly influence. They live like those who are unregenerate and in so doing they lose their savor. They lose the contrast and thereby the gospel is hindered.
If salt is not salty, what good is it? Why use it if it makes no difference? These verses are intended to alert us of the need to maintain a good testimony. We are the only witnesses God has. He has chosen no other means to spread the gospel. If we lose our ability to be effective with it, who will win the lost? If we are not salt, who will be? Examine your life and determine the quality of your influence. Are you making the right kind of difference?
Pastor V. Mark Smith