Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Salt Creates Thirst

You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt has become tasteless, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men.  Matthew 5:13

Jesus tells us in Matthew chapter 5 that as Christians, we are to be salt and light to the world.  Salt can literally transform any recipe from bland and tasteless to flavorful and savory but salt has many other uses as well. 

We as Christians can create a thirst in people’s lives that can only be satisfied by Jesus. Just by living our lives in a way that is led by the Holy Spirit, we can create a thirst in others to have what we have, thirsty after God, peace, joy, and the blessings we have. We can make Christ attractive and desirable.  We have the power, through our behavior, to make the Christian life and faith enticing to those around us.  Then they may realize they are thirsting for the living water that comes from Jesus.
Whenever we as Christians are introduced into a setting, whether is social or work related, the unbelievers should see evidence of the difference that Jesus Christ makes in our lives. They should be able to look at us and say, “I don’t know what they have but I want it.”

Salt is a Preservative
To the people in Jesus’s day, salt was very important.  Obviously they did not have refrigerators so, so they preserved their meat using salt.  The salt was rubbed into the meat before it was stored to stop or at least hinder the decay process.  As Christians, we can have the dramatic impact of hindering the decay process in our society.  We already have to some degree but there is much work still to be done.  By opposing moral decay in our society today, we can help keep corruption at bay. 
We cannot in ourselves actually take corruption out of the lives of men, but we can by our influence prevent the processes of evil and corruption from spreading. Christians do have a preservative effect upon this world. By this we do not mean that a Christian can save or preserve the soul of another. What Jesus had in mind in our text was the influence of the Christian upon society as a whole.
The presence of Christians in the world has done much to preserve a better society. Not only has it raised the standards for better living, but it has also, I am confident, been the cause of God's delay in destroying this wicked world. Had it not been for the presence of a few Christians scattered through this world, surely He would have long since brought this world with all of its blight of sin to utter destruction. Thus Christians have been the preservative element in the world to save it from the awful judgment of a righteous God.

It is hard to deny the power of Christianity in holding back evil. Though some would name many negatives to point at Christians individually, none can say the effect of the church as a whole has not been very positive on our world. To be effective, the salt had to be rubbed into the meat. It cannot just be present or available and perform its function.  In a similar way, Christians must allow God to rub them into the world. And this means that they must be Christians at work, Christians in politics, Christians at home, Christians everywhere else that a normal life in their own society would take them.

That means that we have to be taken out of the salt shaker and spread around, and might get dirty and even seem to dissolve or disappear! Yes, that is what it means. In fact, there is even a sense in which the salt must dissolve if the flavor is to be released, and for this reason God sometimes shakes the salt shaker through persecutions so that the salt will fall out and let this happen.  Sometimes it will mean that we shall have to dissolve to our own interests; that we shall have to extend ourselves in areas of the world where we do not see many Christians.

I should add a fact that is well known to the medical world.  If a body does not give off salt through perspiration, what happens? It retains water, and it becomes bloated. In the same way, the Church will become bloated and desperately unhealthy if the salt is not dispersed in this work of preservation.
No, we cannot stay hidden away and be the “salt of the world”.  It requires us to move outside our comfort zones.  It requires us to go where the decay is.  We need to remember that we do have a responsibility to the world in which we live, a responsibility which cannot be performed apart from the maintaining of a Christian character which is pure and saturated with the potency of the Spirit of God dwelling our hearts.

Scripture to Claim:  Now on the last day, the great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink.” John 7:37

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