“Pointing to another world will never stop vice among us; shedding light over this world can alone help us.” - Walt Whitman: (1819 –1892: was an American poet, essayist, and journalist.)
Gospel Text: (MT 5:13-16)
Jesus said to his disciples:
"You are the salt of the earth.
But if salt loses its taste, with what can it be seasoned?
It is no longer good for anything
but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.
You are the light of the world.
A city set on a mountain cannot be hidden.
Nor do they light a lamp and then put it under a bushel basket;
it is set on a lampstand,
where it gives light to all in the house.
Just so, your light must shine before others,
that they may see your good deeds
and glorify your heavenly Father."
Let me share with you key features and purposes of salt and light:
SALT OF THE EARTH
Preservative – A key feature of salt is to serve as an antiseptic, preventing the degeneration of food. Antiseptic can work only if only the salt is rubbed into the meat. As Christians, we must be in the world, facing what the world offers but not be of the world embracing its worldly values and ethics. As a moral antiseptic, Christians will benefit the secular society by preventing the corruption of society in the moral decay.
Flavor – Without salt, the food becomes rather boring, tasteless, and insipid. Likewise, without the Good News and Christian behaviors, there is no true flavor in the world. No true joy can be accomplished without perfect flavor that Christians provide.
White – The white color of salt symbolizes its purity. Christians are to live holy, pure, different lives. Christians should glory in our difference. An intentional choice needs to be made in our daily decisions in our life pursuing the truth and virtues of Jesus Christ. Paul proclaims in Romans 12, “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world
Fertilizer – As salt enables the growth of plants, Christians likewise need to foster the growth of that which is good in the world. Christians may engage in their calling whichever realm it may belong, and they must champion good and godly causes that promote the good of humanity
Thirst – As you consume salt, you become more thirsty. By exemplifying the very attributes of Lord Jesus Christ, people will start noticing our different behaviors and ask, “Why are you different? Why are you filled with so much patience, peace, and joy?”
LIGHT OF THE WORLD
In Greek, the verse reads, “You and you alone are the light of the world.” Shining is not optional for light. It is a key feature of light. Likewise, we as Christians must understand the function of light.
Expose Reality of Evil – light will make all the wickedness and rottenness visible. The Bible will help you expose the wretchedness of this world. Psalm 119:105 says, “Your words is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.
Enlightens us to God – the light of the world will open the eyes of the blind. We think being blind is bound by physicality. God clearly points out that humanity is spiritually blind without him.
Shows the Way Out – light points to the way out of the darkness. The tunnel of hopelessness, meaninglessness, death, and hell is illuminated with the light of the world. Christians must provide an unobstructed view of the cross to those in whom we come in contact with. The exit is toward Jesus Christ, our salvation.