Summary: Salt and Light
Do you know who I am?
• My parts alone could be deadly. As a soft metal I can explode in water. As a yellowish gas I am poisonous to breathe. Do you know who I am?
• You consider me common, but I have been considered of great value; I have even been used like money. Others have used me as a bond of friendship. Do you know who I am?
• You will find me in water and in the ground. Sometimes I’m thrown on the ground to keep you from slipping. Do you know who I am?
• I have been used as a preservative, but too much of me will spoil a good meal. I’m odorless, but I will add flavor to your food. You will even ask for me by name to improve the taste of a meal. Do you know who I am?
I am Salt.
Do you know who I am?
• When I am absent you’re sometimes afraid, but too much of me in the morning makes you wish I would go away. Do you know who I am?
• I’m full of color but if you look at me I hide them all. I bring out the colors you see everyday; without me your world turns to grey. Do you know who I am?
• When I pass through the rain or a prism my colors separate for you to see. Do you know who I am?
I am Light.
Do you know who you are or ARE YOU HAVING AN IDENTITY CRISIS? I’m not asking for your name. It doesn’t matter if you are young or old, male or female. I’m not interested in who you are within your family as a father, mother, son, daughter, brother, or sister. It’s not important what your occupation may be, or what kind of student you are.
Jesus said, “You are the salt of the earth. . . You are the light of the world” (Matthew 5:13-14 NIV). As a follower of Jesus Christ, do you know who you are, or are you having an identity crisis? Are you sometimes salty and other times bland? Does your light shine one moment and get turned off the next?
Matthew 5:13-16 13Let me tell you why you are here. You’re here to be salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of this earth. If you lose your saltiness, how will people taste godliness? You’ve lost your usefulness and will end up in the garbage. 14Here’s another way to put it: You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. 15If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. 16Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven. (MsgB)
We are salt and light, but what does that mean? If you are not sure, then you are having an identity crisis. Jesus wants to make our identity clear in our minds who we are; certainty with no guess work.
The Sermon on the Mount began with the beatitudes, eight paradoxical statements of joy. Jesus not only showed us how to be joyful; He also showed us how to live our lives like Him. Remember we called the beatitudes the “BE-ATTITUDES,” the qualities and characteristics needed in our lives to be like Jesus.
Jesus knew some of the people listening to Him would have a hard time understanding what He was saying. Many of us perhaps still aren’t sure how to apply the beatitudes to our daily lives. Therefore, Jesus didn’t stop there. Jesus showed us in a more concrete way, so we can get our hand on whom we are as His followers.
Salt and light are things we can understand in our everyday world. We know how salt and light are used and how other things in the world respond to salt and light. Jesus wants us to apply what we know about salt and light to how we live our lives as His followers. You are the salt of the earth and the light of the world! When we live as salt and light then we are living out what Jesus said in the beatitudes. Being salt and light is what it means to live like Jesus.
1. We learn the real condition of our world because Jesus says we are salt and light.
WE LIVE IN A DECAYING AND DARKENED WORLD. The first step toward living out our identity as salt and light is to understand the real condition of our world. The world we live in is in desperate need. Christ wants to use us as salt and light to bring about a transformation in the lives of others.