Salt and Light (Cornerstone)
Sep 10, 2017 - Rev Paul Rasmussen
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- Salt and light are very ordinary commodities in our time, but they weren’t in the ancient world. How might this imagery strike those who first heard Jesus talk about it?
- How salty and bright are you during this season of your life? What makes you answer that way?
- Where has God strategically placed you to be “a city built on a hill?” How can you be salt and light in that context?
When you know who you are and why you are, you’ll know what to do.
This is one of the core principles of great branding: start with who and why. What is secondary. (Don’t believe me? Just ask Leadership expert Simon Sinek, author of Start with Why.)
And so it is with followers of Jesus. This week in Identity Crisis, Paul discussed the Sermon on the Mount, in which Jesus tells us exactly who we are and why:
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 underfoot.
You are the light of the world. A town built 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 others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.
Salt // Did you know salt was an extremely valuable commodity in the ancient world? In fact, it’s how people were paid? That’s where we get the word salary. In Jesus’ day, salt is what made life possible – without salt, you couldn’t preserve food to eat and therefore, you couldn’t survive. In addition to preservation, salt purifies. It creates thirst. It melts. And it heals.
When Jesus says, “You are the salt of the earth,” he’s saying: You’re precious to me! You’re here to purify and heal and melt. You’re here to give life.
Light // Light extinguishes darkness. It pushes out the shadows and exposes that which is hidden. And when you know who God is and what he has done for you, it causes you to shine! And not just for the sake of being shiny – so that others might be drawn to God, like a moth to a flame.
Check out the full message to learn how you can be true to the brand Jesus launched by being salt and light right where you are!
During your First 15 this week, ask God to show you ways in which you might have become embarrassed to be salt and light, maybe you don’t realize the world around you is in need of your salt and light – or maybe you’ve forgotten altogether that this is your purpose! Spend time asking him to revive your saltiness and give you greater light to shine into the darkness. Meditate on this passage and ask God to work in you so that you can shine and season more boldly!
*Go to our Identity Crisis webpage for an additional devotional to further engage this topic and grow in your faith.