Are We Worth Our Salt?

Are We Worth Our Salt?

Posted on 25. Oct, 2012 by in Kingdom Lifestyle

The Attractional Lifestyle Of The Kingdom #7

So far in our series we have defined the kingdom and the spiritual transformation of our character. It is from this, that we begin to demonstrate a different lifestyle that creates a culture that is unique to the Kingdom. It is from this culture we begin to impact the world: our microcosm first, then a broader world.

In Matthew 5:13, Jesus gives us a natural example of how we are to impact our worlds. He states: “Ye are the salt of the earth:..” This idea of salt is a powerful illustration to the impact and impression we as his church should be making. As sent Kingdom representatives, we are responsible to live out our relationship with him, revealing his presence, wherever he places us.

With this idea, Jesus is making a bold statement: “Ye are the salt of the earth.” This is full of expectation: the fruit of our spiritual transformation AND its demonstration. So the implied question is not whether we are or not: But are we functioning as salt?

It is obvious that this is significant to Jesus, as he follows up with “if if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.” So what is this ineffective salt that Jesus is speaking of? Lets take a look.

The word “savour” here is an interesting one. It is moraino and primarily means “to be foolish, or figuratively to act as a simpleton.” Breaking it down further, it is from “moros” and means “dull or stupid” (Vine’s). Whoa! Strong words from our Lord!

This meaning is brought out in the following verses:

  • Rom 1:21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, 23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. KJV
  • 1 Cor 1:19 For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.20 Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?21 For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.

The big picture: salt that has become ineffective and lost its savor are the believers that have foolishly taken up with the world. They have reverted to the world’s belief, values, priorities and treasures. Because they have become so like the world, they have lost their distinctiveness and thus the ability to influence, their world. This is obviously an issue since the Kingdom culture is to be distinctly different from the world’s.

The other implication of Jesus’ statement is that the kingdom is like effective salt. Whatever salt touches – it impacts or changes.

Because of our changed beliefs and values, we have a changed conduct that should impact those we come into contact with. The Lord has a plan for each of us to influence the areas of life where he has placed us: our jobs, neighborhoods, clubs, schools, etc. He has placed us there because he EXPECTS US to function as salt, making a difference in the culture.

Since correct functioning of salt is crucial to Jesus, lets take a brief look at the nature and function of salt.

WHAT SALT IS
Salt appears to be a simple commodity of life you will find shelves full at a store: Yet it is valuable commodity

It’s ease of purchase and cheapness has kept us from recognizing its value. Salt has been important part of man’s life from the very beginning

  • Homer: called salt “divine’
  • Plato: a “substance dear to the gods”
  • Jews prized it as a preservative of food
  • And because required in sacrifices
  • The English “salary:’ represented a soldiers money allowance for salt, is from salarium: salt allotment issued to soldier of roman army

Salt has a great value to society so it was a great object lesson for Jesus to use. The following is a summary of the importance of salt.

CHARACTERISTICS OF SALT

Salt is Necessary For Life

The human body contains about four ounces of salt. It is necessary for muscle movement, nerve transmission, and production of HCL for digestion, aiding movement of fluids to and from cells among many other things. In fact, it is so necessary for bodily functions that the lack of it can cause death. Salt is vital part of almost every function of our body

Kingdom disciples are to be vital to this world: We are to be the life givers in the area He has placed us. As salt – you and I bring life to a dying world. We do not have to worry how it may happen, nor try to manufacture it. If we are walking as His disciple, he will work through us.

Salt is Distinctive

The very nature of salt is distinctive; you know when your favorite dish is lacking! Conversely, when you sprinkle salt on bland food, instantly you sense a change or tasted the difference. That is how we should be in our mico-cultures of life.

The average life of those around us is a routine of living, jobs, kids, stress, money, etc. All becomes a rut, blasé, and people begin to wonder: “Is this all there is to life?”

As salt, we are to stand out in a crowd, not ostentatiously, but an obviously different lifestyle. The character transformation should bring to our lives more joy, peace, servant attitude and contentedness. This distinctive Kingdom lifestyle is one that our friends, family and coworkers should notice. We should bring a distinctive flavor to our relationships.

Salt is Abrasive

Salt can be abrasive: when rubbed on something it scratches and is uncomfortable. The same can be true of the Kingdom disciple.

Sometimes the distinctiveness of the Kingdom will rub some people: not that we should intentionally attempt to do so. It is just that a righteous lifestyle can bring conviction to some around us. Their spirit senses the presence of God that is at work in us and their fallen nature resists (probably like many of us have in the past).

This can be the reason you may have that one person at work, school, etc who constantly makes fun or looks to embarrass you. They ask those questions when everyone is looking to put you on the spot – they did it to Jesus! They are doing in because what you stand for and live is abrasive to them

Salt Preserves

One of significant actions of salt is that it is a preserver. Historically, salt has been used to preserve food. As a preserver, salt draws the water out of meat decreasing the environment for bacterial growth, preventing the corruption of the food.

As representatives of our King and his nature, we are to be preservatives and arrest corruption in our environments.

Paul Wrote: “For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God” (1 Cor 1:18). Perishing describes the condition of our world. The word translated here also means lost or destroyed. Those around us are lost and being destroyed by sin. This is evidenced by the corruption in their lives and the world.

We are called to be the salt in the world, the ones that preserve and save from destruction and perishing. We have been placed in lives of individuals to stop the process of corruption by bringing individuals to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.

Salt Enhances Flavor

I could have put this subtopic with the first one about being distinctive, but I am attempting to bring a different application here. Salt makes things taste better! It is recorded that Job says: “Is tasteless food eaten without salt, or is there flavor in the white of an egg? 7 I refuse to touch it; such food makes me ill” (NIV Job 6:6 -7). How much do you enjoy eating food not salted to taste? It is a common complaint hospital food – needs salt! Unsalted food is bland, flat and unexciting: Job said “I refuse to touch it, it makes me ill!”

The Kingdom lifestyle is anything but bland and boring! We shouldn’t be boring! Our function is to bring life to a bland tasteless world! We should not be known for what we are against, but what we are for! The Kingdom of God is righteousness, peace and joy in the Spirit! (Romans 14:17). We should be excited about our King and his kingdom.

So, salt is necessary, brings distinctiveness and life: yet salt is of no value if it remains in the salt shaker! To be effective it must come into contact with the food.

It is the same in the Kingdom: we cannot make an impact on others unless we come into contact with them. In my opinion, the idea of contemporary evangelism is keeping the salt in the shaker. We structure events to attract people to a building or event where they are preached to. Once this is accomplished, there is little interaction with them, unless they return for another service. The only way that the Kingdom lifestyle becomes attractional is when they see it lived out in everyday life. Lets face it, we can put on our “game face” for a couple of hours a week; yet it is in the friction of daily life and relationships that our transformed beliefs and values are made real to them.

CONCLUSION

Just as salt is necessary to life and it’s enjoyment, so is the disciple of Jesus as his kingdom representatives. In many ways, those of the world may not understand our presence, values, or way of life: Yet without Kingdom disciples, this world is tasteless, bland, boring, not worth living.

It is our responsibility as salt to touch the lives of those in the world, daily interacting with them in such a way that it brings zest, flavor and preservation to their life

Q: does how I live my life make a difference when I am on the job, at school, in neighborhood, etc.
Q: How am I Doing as a preservative in this world? Who have I arrested the corruption of sin in their lives?
Q: am I an enthusiastic representative of Jesus to my world?

Other posts in the Attractional Lifestyle Of The Kingdom Series

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Dr Martin lives in St Louis MO,  with his wife Ava and their dog Zoe.  His ministry focus is the principles of Kingdom Authority that empower believers to use their spiritual gifts, demonstrating the miraculous power of Jesus and his kingdom. The results: increased faith and the potential for greater revival and harvest. He is available to speak to your local assembly, organization or ministry. For more information, check  us out here

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One Response to “Are We Worth Our Salt?”

  1. Paula

    25. Oct, 2012

    Loved and enjoyed this post! We are suppose to live a lifestyle distinctly different from the rest of the ‘world’ but most Christians go to church and continue to live like the world….even in their ‘self -righteousness’. Thanks for sharing this thought.

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