Christian, Are You Sure You’re Living From a Pure Heart?
By: Rev. Joe Kramer
(13) “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.
(14) “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. (15) 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. (16) In the same way, let your light shine before others,that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.
-Matthew 5:13-16 (NIV)
This is one of the most familiar passages in all of scripture, but it speaks to our Christian lives and how we should behave. This passage comes right after the Beatitudes. This speaks to a behavior that flows out of a life that has been changed by Christ (at least that is what it should be). Jesus ends with these words.
In verse thirteen Jesus says that the believers are salt. Now salt was common in Israel; a commodity that was used for many purposes. Meat that was sacrificed was often rubbed down with salt. Easton’s Bible Dictionary has a wonderful explanation on salt. Here is a taste/exert (pun intended) of what it says.
- A “covenant of salt” (Num. 18:19; 2 Chr. 13:5) was a covenant of perpetual obligation. New-born children were rubbed with salt (Ezek. 16:4). Disciples are likened unto salt, with reference to its cleansing and preserving uses (Matt. 5:13).
Jesus says that a believer who has lost their integrity and witness due to their not living out what God has put in them through the Holy Spirit is useless to His kingdom. This is a warning that as Christians, if we are not living the Christian lifestyle, we can actually hurt the cause of Christ and our witness means nothing because we aren’t living what we “preach.” This ought to put some fear in us that we should be careful how we live before God and before people that we might win some to Christ.
In verses fourteen through sixteen He likens us to a lamp and a city on a hill. In this illustration Jesus is reiterating what He said about the salt, only this time He reminds us that we should not hide ourselves away from the world, but should be the light of this dark world. We should show people that there is a way that leads to life, even in the midst of despair and darkness in our lives. God loves us so much that He made a way, so we should live like there is a way and share with others the good news of what God has done in our lives; the sacrifice that was brought to us through Christ Jesus.
How about you today? Where are you? Are you glorifying God with the way you live? If you do an honest inventory and find out that you are not, maybe you never came to Him for a life change in the first place. Won’t you come to Him and let Him change you for the better and make a new creation out of you (“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” -2 Cor. 5:17-NIV). All it takes is a pure heart surrendered to the Lord. It is not about the words that you say, but the intent of your heart. Just say something like “Jesus I need you, come into my life.” It is about a heart change. What will you do today? The Choice is yours.