Are you worth your weight in salt?
The world has embraced tolerance and freedom of lifestyle, yet has strangely remained intolerant of Christians and the godly lifestyle we choose. As followers of Christ, we may be persecuted and mocked for living our lives according to the pattern set by the One who gave us all life.
What does that mean to us? Should we change? Should we adapt to the times? What should be our response?
The Word of God is clear: we are to be the salt of the earth.
“You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people’s feet.” Matthew 5:13 (ESV)
The life principles taught by Jesus at the Sermon on the Mount are still applicable to us today. No matter how society changes, the Bible reminds us to not lose our ‘saltiness’. We are called to be different. When we are not the salt of the earth, we fail to impact the people around us and may even be lost and trampled in the process.
What Does It Mean to Be Salt?
Salt is made up of two elements – sodium and chlorine. As individual entities, sodium is a volatile metal and chlorine is a poisonous gas. Volatile, unstable and harmful – that sounds like many our lives before we found the grace of God!
Although the combination of sodium and chlorine sounds like a recipe for disaster, when put together by the Creator of the Universe it becomes a simple but valuable part of daily human life – salt. When we remember how poisonous and volatile our lives were before we met our Creator, we are able to respond to the world with compassion.
Salt is a silent witness. It has colligative properties and is able to change the freezing and boiling point of the solution it is added to. Salt changes the temperature just by being salt.
Our lives have colligative properties too. Without saying anything, we can change the atmosphere just by being who we are in Christ. For this to happen, we need to remain constant. Our outward behaviour needs to match the character within us – that is integrity.
There is value in being salt. The word ‘salary’ originates from the Latin word ‘salarium’. That term alludes to a time in Roman history where a soldier was paid in salt, a precious and hard-to-find commodity. As soldiers in the army of Christ, we are literally worth our weight in salt.
Salt brings flavour, creates thirst and preserves food. Our lifestyle should whet the appetite of the people around us and cause them to thirst for the things of God. Just as salt holds back the decay of food, our influence holds back the moral decay of our society. Let us pray with compassion for the people around us.
“For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and his ears are open to their prayer. But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.” 1 Peter 3:12 (NKJV)
“The insistent prayer of a righteous person is powerfully effective.” James 5:16b (WEB)
In these last days, God is not looking at the world; He is looking at His church!
How Do We Become Salt?
We become salt by being the person God wants us to be. When we submit to His processes, He can mold and develop us. It is not a coincidence that the Beatitudes are written just before the verse on being the salt of the earth. They give us a look into some of these transforming processes.
Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.
Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness ‘sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.” Matthew 5:3-12 (NKJV)
During these troubling times, stand strong in your identity in Christ. Become more like Him. Allow God to use you to show grace and love in the midst of troubles and persecution.
You are worth your weight in salt. Are you ready to be shaken out of the saltshaker?
(Next week, we will find out how salt loses its flavour and learn how we can be the light of the world.)