Summary: Christians should also interact and be exposed to the community to be the salt and light of the world.
Read Matthew 5:13-16.
Why did Jesus compare the disciples to the salt of the earth and light of the world?
When we study the characteristics of salt and light, we learn that when use properly, it has beneficial influence. I said “proper usage” because improper usage is also both dangerous and less effective.
Too much salt is not good for its users (e.g. high blood pressure, kidney problem). Less salt does not have a significant influence (e.g. less flavor, cannot preserve nor purifies).
Same thing with light, too much light is blinding (e.g. when you are driving and the opposite automobile is on high beam light, taking pictures with too much light does not produce high quality pictures) but less light is also damaging or ineffective (e.g. reading with less light damages vision sharpness).
In the same way, the followers of Christ as salt and light of this world should have beneficial influence in this world. God wanted us to have a useful and favorable impact in this world.
If you are the only Christians in your family, God wanted you to be the salt and light of your home. Salt and light today are two indispensable commodities.
If you are a student surrounded by unbelievers, God wanted you to be the salt and light in your school. Some Christians are against homeschooling and Christian school as a means of staying away from ungodly public schools.
There are useful applications of homeschooling (e.g. those who are sick or have physical limitation) and Christian school like propagating the message of the gospel (e.g. when the school is open to general public) but to use them as a way of shielding our children from the influences of the world we are missing the admonition of the Lord of being salt and light of this world.
If we are surrounded by unbelievers in our workplaces, God wanted us to be salt and light of that office.
As a church, God wanted us to be the salt and light of the world in our community. We should have a holistic and positive influence in our community.
Everything that God created has a positive influence in our lives (e.g creation – land, heavenly bodies, plants, animals, etc). Everyone that God touched and changed have an impact in other people’s lives. (e.g. prophets, apostles, today’s preachers, average but genuine Christians, etc.)
Ephesians 2:10. For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
This verse tells us that we do good works because we are God’s workmanship not to earn God’s favor.
In what ways we are the salt and light of this world?
In this case we need identify the various applications of salt and light:
1. PRESERVING AGENT
There are many uses for the salt but for the ancient Jews salt is used to preserve meat without refrigeration. (e.g. dried meat, dried fish, salted fish or shrimp) Jesus calls his disciples to arrest corruption and prevent the moral decay in our world. Christians must permeate society as agents of redemption.
Although it is the Holy Spirit’s work to transform a person, God wanted His children as led by the Holy Spirit to prevent a moral deterioration of our society. How can we be that kind of agent?
a. By modeling a moral lifestyle – let us live the kind of life that honors God and we can be that preserving agent. Instead of contributing to the problem of our society, let us be part of the solutions.
Titus 3:1-8. Remind the people to be subject to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready to do whatever is good, 2to slander no one, to be peaceable and considerate, and to show true humility toward all men. 3At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. 4But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, 5he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, 6whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life. 8This is a trustworthy saying. And I want you to stress these things, so that those who have trusted in God may be careful to devote themselves to doing what is good. These things are excellent and profitable for everyone.
Notice that after a person was saved by God from moral and spiritual deterioration, He expects us to devote ourselves to doing what is good. (e.g. peace loving person in the home, church, and neighborhood; detach from activities that promotes immorality – adultery, cohabitation, and addiction.)