Summary: A sermon about salt from Matthew 5:13. Main points come from Victor Knowles
Evening Service for 5/24/2009
(Mat 5:13 NIV) "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.
An old Greek tale tells of a king with three daughters. On one occasion the king asked each of his girls how much they loved him. The first one said, “More than honey.” The second said, “More than sugar.” The third one said gleefully, “More than salt.” The king was outraged and banished his daughter from the palace. Years later, to his sorrow he learned the wisdom of her answer. Another version of the story, quotes the third daughter as saying, “I love you like meat loves salt.” Had the king known the true value of salt, he would not have acted so rashly.
A. Salt was a valuable commodity in ancient times. Many early civilizations elevated the seasoning to an almost holy status. In some countries, it was placed in the coffin with the deceased to signify the purity of his soul. At one time Arabs placed it before strangers as evidence of good will and enduring friendship.
B. Over time many myths have surrounded salt: for example, spilling salt is bad luck; to counteract this curse, one throws a pinch of salt over his left shoulder with his right hand.
C. How common is salt? Look at the globe, 72% of the earth’s surface is covered by oceans. Sea water contains 23 grams of salt per 1,000 grams of water. That’s a lot.
Thesis: Tonight we are going to talk about what salt is used for and how this applies to us.
1. Salt is used to season
A. Primary used as a flavor enhancer. We are supposed to add zest, spice and vigor to life. Oliver Wendell Holmes said, “I might have entered the ministry if certain ministers I knew had not looked and acted so much like undertakers.”
B. (John 10:10 NIV) I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.
A. (Col 4:6 NIV) Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.
B. Obvious things are we are not to cuss.
C. We are to season our conversation with “Praise the Lord” or “God bless you.”
D. We are to speak up for the Lord and try to bring a conversation around to Him.
E. What about those who are so negative. Joy suckers. Be encouraging. This is from this person, so take it “with a grain of salt.”
F. (1 Th 5:11 NIV) Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.
2. Salt is used to heal.
A. Putting salt into a wound does speed up the healing process. Salt absorbs fluids and causes the wound to dry out. This causes the body to heal the wound quicker. However, the pain associated with putting salt into a wound is not desirable. In ancient times salt was used on wounds for healing. This is where we get the phrase, to rub salt into a wound. Good but unpleasant.
B. Ezekiel mentions that they would put salt on newborns.
C. We are put on this earth to help in healing. Of course when Jesus was on this earth he healed many. Christians were the first ones to open hospitals.
D. In a spiritual sense, we are to help to heal spiritual wounds. We are the nurse and the Lord is the doctor. (Mark 2:17 NIV) Jesus said to them, "It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners."
3. Salt is used to preserve
A. In the NT world salt was expensive, unless you lived along the Dead Sea.
B. The word salary is derived from salt. Some times people were paid with salt. Not worth your salt means that we are not worth our pay.
C. It was important ingredient because they didn’t have refrigerators or freezers. Had to preserve meat with salt.
D. We are persevering the morals of the world. Southeast- Be a conscience to the community. Need to speak up on moral issues.
E. Without the church and Bible believing Christians, where would the morals go?
F. (Rom 11:5 NIV) So too, at the present time there is a remnant chosen by grace.
G. All that is necessary for evil to succeed is that good men do nothing.
F. Scrutinize our character. Are we speaking up, Are we living it?
4. Salt creates thirst
A. We can’t make a horse drink, but we can make him thirsty.