(Mathew 5: 13,14,15 &16)
Saints of the old used to sing a song, “Every day with Jesus is sweeter than the day before” often. The walk with Jesus helps us to retain our salvation and our life shows the effects of salvation out to the world. The Psalmist sings in Psalms 40: 2 &3, “He brought me up also out of a horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my foot upon a rock, and established my goings. And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the Lord”. As we walk close with Jesus His qualities show out from us. That is why Jesus Called us lights of the world and salt of the earth (Matthew 5:14, 15). We get our light from Jesus as He is the source of light. His light emits its rays through us. We also get our taste (virtues) from Him so that we are tasty to the world.
Light and salt have some scientific qualities. The qualities are unique. The light will not act as if it has brightness. If there is light, there is brightness and if there is salt, there is taste. These qualities are from within and they are exhibited outside. The light or salt will not try to give out brightness or taste. When Jesus told us that we are the light and the salt, many time we try to exhibit those qualities by ourselves and we fail. We can neither be bright by ourselves nor we can be tasty by ourselves. God gives us His grace to be bright and to be tasty. But it is our responsibility to examine ourselves whether we have the brightness and taste that He expects from us and rely on God to be better light and salt. We cannot have a wrong witness externally if we are light and salt within us. Sometime people argue that the things seen outside do not matter and you should see the inside. This argument is an excuse. Nobody can see the inside, except God. They use that statement as a scapegoat. When you have light inside, you cannot stop it from showing outside. If you have darkness inside, our external deeds will show that darkness outside. If we are salts, we will be tasty outside. The external appearance shows what is inside.
Are you Bright?
Our brightness denotes our life of witness. He calls us to be disciples and go in to all nations and make disciples. Discipleship is by example and witness. We make disciples not by our words, but by the quality of our life and the work we do. The Bible tells us about three categories of light.
1. Candle: Light on a candle stick:
In Matthew 5:15, we read about the candle on the candlestick which gives light to the household. Candles have limited brightness. They can give light to a limited area and the influence it makes is to a limited surrounding. The household represents the church community. As we are saved from the world for the Kingdom of God, we should be in the church family to be a witness and to be trained. The worship, prayer, studying the word together will prepare us to be effective witnesses in the world. The witnessing life (the brightness) of one believer enlightens the other believers. We should not forsake the assembling of the saints (Hebrews 10:25). Becoming brighter in the church and giving brightness in the church is the principle God ordained. When your brightness dims, you are brightened by the Holy Ghost (the oil). This is a lifelong process. Until we enter into the Kingdom of God, fellowshipping with the saints is a must and we grow through spiritual fellowship.
2. Halogen: Light on a hill
As we grow in our spiritual life our brightness should be more and the area of influence should be enlarged. Isaiah 54:2 says, “Enlarge the place of thy tent, and let them stretch forth the curtains of thine habitations: spare not, lengthen thy cords, and strengthen thy stakes.” The size of a light on the mountain top is bigger, its capacity and brightness are more because it has to give light to a larger area. Likewise, in our spiritual life, we are called to be disciples and to make disciples. Our witness should be first in our community. The area of your influence may be your work place, your city or your neighborhood. Your life of witness should grow and enlarge. Do not confine yourself to the church alone. Church is the place where we receive the strength. Church is a place where God equips us to be a light on the mountain top. But our mission and our vision should be for the world around us. We have a work & mission to do in the community because it is the great commission of Jesus Christ. Showing the love of Christ, doing charity, helping the needy, preaching the gospel, praying for the sick and rejected are the duties of a Christian. But more than everything, leading a life of witness is the key for the kingdom of God and that is the light on a hill. Jesus said, “A city set on a hill cannot be hid.” (Matthew 5:14). Our power source is Jesus. Our relationship with Jesus should grow day by day and He gives us the Holy Ghost beyond measure to be a light on the hill.
3. Star: Light on the sky:
In Daniel 12: 14, Daniel prophesies that the righteous will be like the stars in the sky. What a wonderful privilege this is. God takes us higher and higher not only in our spiritual life, but also in our life of influence. Stars are created to give light to the world. The brightness and influence of a star is much more than any light in this world. Stars give light to a broader area around the world. Jesus in Acts 1:8 told the disciples the step of their influence in the society when they receive the baptism of the Holy Ghost. He said, “Ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in Judea and in Samaria and unto the uttermost part of the earth.” Stars give light to the uttermost part of the earth. When we are committed to His great commission and yield our life and make it flexible for His desire, He is able to take us higher and higher until we are placed in the sky. There is no limit for your growth and sanctification until we see Him face to face.
Are you tasty?
Jesus said, “Ye are the salt of the earth.” Matthew 5:13.
Salt adds taste to the food and the food is for our growth. When we are given a tasty meal we eat more. When a person eats more, he grows more. We are kept in this world to give spiritual food to others. The spiritual food is the word of God. When we present the word of God to others, it should be tasty. That is why Paul said in Colossians, “Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.” You are the salt of the earth. Our relationship with God gives us spiritual experiences. When we have spiritual experiences, they become our testimonies. As the salt adds taste to the food, our life testimonies add taste to the word of our mouth. When people taste and eat the word of God through us, they grow.
So, when Jesus said that you are the salt of the earth, He tells us that we should enhance the spiritual growth of the others and thereby that of the “Church”. We, as believers should encourage people to grow and never discourage people. God has given us a ministry of reconciliation and not division. Bitterness is the opposite to the good taste of salt. Salt enhances faith, but bitterness destroys the faith. Salt brings reconciliation, but bitterness brings division. Salt helps to grow, but bitterness brings destruction.
Are you bright and tasty?