Summary: Living as salt and Light

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“How useful are you?”

Gladstone Baptist Church – 6/5/07 pm

1. What are the characteristics in people that we respect? Are we respected by the way we live our life?

Have you ever noticed that some people come up with some really stupid ideas. Like freezers for Eskimos, like Battery powered battery charger, Camcorder with braille-encoded buttons, Ejector seats for helicopters, Fireproof matches, Inflatable darts-board, Sundial with glow in the dark markings or Waterproof teabags

I have a collection of pictures I want to show you of some crazy inventions.

Some things that people dream up are totally impractical that they become useless. They will never work and are only fit for laughing at.

Tonight, I want to ask you the question – how useful are you?

When we think of people being useful, what sort of skills or characteristics do we think of?

It is somewhat difficult to answer that question – isn’t it – because you have to know what purpose a person is to be used for before you can decide whether they are useful or not. If I said, that a person was to be used to build a bridge – you would give me a different set of skills or characteristics to someone who was going to cut my hair.

What If I asked – what would make a person useful to God? What sort of skills or characteristics would you give me?

2. Last week we found out that the really fortunate people are those that live according to God’s standards. But there is another reason why we are to live according to God’s standards – that is to bring praise to God. (vs 16) People only praise God if they recognise his lordship.

Last week we began a series on the Sermon on the Mount and we said that this was one of the most famous speeches ever given. It has been remembered down through history because it laid out God’s standard for living. It was a guide to how to live as counterculture Christians.

See God wants us to be fortunate or blessed people and that comes about by living lives that are different to others – lives that are useful for him. Some of the attitudes and actions that he desires in us we covered last week are these … to

• Humbly rely on Jesus

• Look up for comfort

• Be gentle

• Be committed disciples

• Show merciful

• Live with integrity

• Be peacemakers and

• To Endure persecution.

And Jesus said, when we have these attitudes and actions, we are truly fortunate because we will find God and be welcomed into his family. We are fortunate when we have these characteristics – when we live according to God’s standards, but there is another reason why He desires us to live according to His standards – If you have your Bibles there, open them up with me to Matt 5. This is no doubt a passage that you have heard many times before. But I think it is worth looking again.

. 13 “You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men.

14 “You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.

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