Summary: This morning I want us to hear the words of our Lord again… as found in part of the SOTM in Matthew 5. 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
This morning I want us to hear the words of our Lord again… as found in part of the SOTM in Matthew 5.
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. “You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. 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. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven. (Matthew 5:13-16)
- What compelling words. He didn’t say…
o You are the light of the church… go therefore and form a club
o You are the scorekeepers of the world… go therefore and monitor evil.
o You are the lawmakers of the world… go therefore and rally voters.
- No, he said, you are the salt of the earth; you are the light of the world.
To help us really understand what Jesus saw at hand, let us hear a few other words related to such an illuminating influence in the world…
In him was life, and that life was the light of men… the true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world. (John 1:4,9)
When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” (John 8:12)
I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness. (John 12:46)
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this? (John 11:25-26)
Jesus replied, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. The man who loves his life will lose it, while the man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. (John 12:23-25)
Jesus brought the light of life that it might be imparted to us… in us.
What an appropriate week to lift before us this great work of impartation… Ascension… often perplexing
- Resurrection makes him dangerous… loose… like the disciples we discover he can show up anywhere… everywhere.
- Walter Wink - “Killing Jesus was like trying to destroy a dandelion seed head by blowing on it.”
- They stood staring at the sky… but then everything changed
- Augustine “You ascended from before our eyes, and we turned back grieving, only to find you in our hearts.”
- Jesus left His body to carry on in other bodies… our bodies… the Body of Christ… Church.
> Jesus set afire the life and light of God, and the first thing intended in this divine invasion is that we would share in being…
1. DISTINCT FROM WITHIN; CONSUMED AND FILLED WITH THE LIFE AND LIGHT OF CHRIST.
- Jesus never intended for us to save the world, to bear the burden of being something we’re not. He intended for us to be consumed and filled with him.
- The new spirituality of our day often associated with the term New Age, portrays our need to discover the life of God within us
- I would agree, exactly what Christ intends
- What differs from such trends in thought is the calculation of where we stand and an honest look of humanity
- Human spirit shows no signs of being spiritually progressive… neither are the countries from which such hopefulness originates.
- We’re spiritually dead apart from God.
- The inherent pride within us leaves us autonomous, and this can’t be overcome by further believing we’re all God.
- To discover as Jesus intended, the power to be ‘Born Again’… means we become truly human again by not trying to be God any longer, but by receiving him in our lives thru Christ.
- It’s in our own impoverishment… and sufferings and weakness that God is able to fill us.
For we do not preach ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ. But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that his life may be revealed in our mortal body. (2 Corinthians 4:5-11)