Salt of the earth

Q. Do you know what Jesus mean when he told his disciples they were the SALT of the EARTH?

“You are the salt of the earth. But what good is salt if it has lost its flavor? Can you make it salty again? It will be thrown out and trampled underfoot as worthless.” Matthew 5:13 NLT


27 thoughts on “Salt of the earth

  1. A quick Google research comes up with some facts about salt that throw light on what Jesus might have meant. Roman soldiers were paid a SALA-rium or salary…that is their included a stipend for “salt” for their necessary food. Therefore the word salary’s origin is in the word ‘salt’.
    “Worth one’s salt” is taken to mean to be ‘effective and efficient’. Certainly Jesus could have meant that His children in the earth would be effective and efficient in putting forth the GOOD NEWS.
    Salt brings out the savor and the flavor of food to be digested. Jesus said if the salt loses its savor of what use is it? Have you ever tasted ‘bad’ salt? Years ago I found some old salt in the back of a cabinet or somewhere. When I tasted a few grains….there was nothing there! No sharp response on the tongue; no pinch or power at all. It was like grains of sand in my mouth. I was startled by this as I had no idea that salt could lose its saltiness.This was before I understood the Scripture. It was only to be spewed out of the mouth. Maybe that was what Jesus meant when He said another thing…..”if you are lukewarm I will spew you out of my mouth!” That was like the salt I tasted. Nothing there! It’s usefulness was gone. Jesus said it and I don’t imagine one can ever RE-SALT salt!

  2. Since this verse is sandwiched between a discourse in Matthew 5 on the blessings of being persecuted for doing what ‘God approves of’ and the exhortation to be a light to people so they will see and ‘praise your Father in heaven’, I think it relates to both and how we choose to live our lives. We help or hinder people from coming to or growing in the Lord Jesus.
    Also,an analogy that fertilizer is a salt and when used correctly helps plants grow.

  3. Yes so that confirms that in your fertilizer analogy…the “salt” renders the plant growth, effective and efficient….so to speak.

  4. In her tutorial on gay marriage, “Another Perspective” I believe Sara opened my eyes to a view I had not considered before. It makes me think of Jesus’ Words to His detractors…”RENDER UNTO CAESAR THE THINGS THAT ARE CAESAR’S AND UNTO GOD THE THINGS THAT ARE GOD’S.”
    That has taken on a whole new meaning for me, now, in the light of the events of the last few days concerning gay marriage.

  5. Further thoughts.. the “Render unto Caesar” truth does not mean that we
    shouldn’t pray about it; pray that righteousness and truth of the Lord Jesus Christ would prevail. But many of us Christians don’t or won’t or are too busy to. Ps. 75:8 says, ”
    “For the LORD holds a cup in his hand that is full of foaming wine mixed with spices. He pours out the wine in judgment, and all sinners must drink it, draining it to the dregs.”

  6. From personal experience this week with allergies causing infection in the gums I learned the wonderful healing benefits of salt. Placing salt with all its saltiness in very warm water helps the infection to go away. How healing! Thinking of this healing aspect in a spirit formate. When I communicate with others am I bringing the salt of God’s word that brings healing/hope or am I bringing words that are of the world and have no saltiness to bring about healing or hope. If the latter I have brought nothing of substance to the person I am communicating with. They were left with nothing more than they had before I spoke to them.

  7. To shed some light on the Scripture where Jesus said, “render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s” look in Matthew 22: 22.
    This is Clark’s commentary on that verse.
    When they had heard these words, they marvelled – And well they might – never man spake like this man. By this decision, Caesar is satisfied – he gets his own to the uttermost farthing. God is glorified – his honor is in every respect secured. And the People are edified – one of the most difficult questions that could possibly come before them is answered in such a way as to relieve their consciences, and direct their conduct.[ See my (Clark’s) discourse entitled, ‘The Rights of God and Caesar.’
    That is in part of what Sara was saying when she was teaching on the particular subject of gay marriage and not only that but other political and governmental situations that arise and will continue to arise in the lives of Christians…and how we should handle and pray about it. We must continue to obey God’s Word and fulfill our “oughts” to God as Gary taught this morning and secure the Honor of God Almighty. And allow the things of ‘caesar’ to be rendered ‘ by those who are in ought to ‘it’.

    1. I think we can give many, many ways light can heal. The first thing that comes to my mind is sunlight. Physical strength comes from sunlight.

      Wonder if there would be salt without light?

  8. Found this on the Cargill Salt website: “Solar salt is produced through the natural evaporation of sea water or other naturally occurring brine. Salt water is captured in shallow ponds and allowed to evaporate by means of the sun and wind. During the process, a salt bed forms on the bottom of the pond. The salt is harvested, washed, screened and packaged. The typical solar “crop” takes from one to five years to produce.”

  9. Seems light Mr. Salt and Mrs. Light walks hand in hand like an excellent marriage. I have heard ‘horse and carriage…’ go together like a…..Now I see salt and light gives a deep understanding of just how many ways commitment, marriage, partnership, contract and the list marches on in the Light of God’s Word!

  10. There sure is a lot to think on Sara’s illustration, “Mr. Salt and Mrs. Light walks hand in hand like an excellent marriage, etc.”. Two can’t walk together ‘without agreeing on the direction’ according to Amos 3:3. And the true Light ‘who gives light to everyone’ is Jesus. If I am going to be salt I will have to be moving in the same direction as Jesus.

  11. Debi, look what happens when Salt and Light walk together; – Carolyn Caines, of Upper Room daily writes; “RECENTLY, my family suffered a tragedy and was faced with having to move at the same time. I wrote this poem to express my gratitude for church members who became God for us in a physical way.

    We felt God’s eyes look down today,
    when women brought the lunch buffet.
    It was God’s kindness packed our things,
    God’s words we felt in hope that springs.

    We saw God’s hand of help today,
    when trucks and trailers drove our way.
    God moved us into our new home.
    God hugged us there; we weren’t alone.

    You were God’s hands; you were his feet.
    You were God’s heart that knew our need,
    God in flesh when life got tough.
    We never can say thanks enough.
    – Carolyn Caines

    1. Yes, this is a beautiful poem and illustration of ‘what happens when Salt and Light walk together’. Living proof of what tholton writes below from her footnotes…’we should affect others positively.’

  12. “What did Jesus mean when he told his disciples they were the SALT of the EARTH?” I think the footnotes, in my Bible, provides a good answer to the question. “If a seasoning has no flavor, it has no value. If Christians make no effort to affect the world around them, they are of little value to God. If we are too much like the world, we are worthless. Christians should not blend in with everyone else. Instead, we should affect others positively, just as seasoning brings out the best flavor in food.”

  13. I think it takes Mr. Salt, Mrs. Light and the Water everyday. The water of the Word everyday does not cause one to thirst. Jesus said in John 4: 14 New International Version (©1984)
    but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” (Light not eternal darkness).

    When I was growing up my mother would have us drink lots of water when working outside and we had to eat salty things. She said we were like the cows of the field who needed water and salt blocks to lick. The more the cows licked the more water they wanted. (Cows will die if they suffer from salt deficiency. Deficiency of salt include muscle cramps, rough coat, decreased feed intake, licking and chewing various objects, as well as decreased production. Dairy cows get hit the hardest first with salt deficiency, and may collapse and die if they have been salt deficient for a long period of time.)

    Perhaps spiritually the more flavor/salt (nearest to God) we get the more we seek and receive His word (water) and the more we find ourselves walking with Mrs. Light in the World, knowing we are on Heaven’s Highway. We become the models for others to seek Heaven’s Highway as well. Not choosing Mr. Salt, Mrs. Light, and the Water will lead to eternal darkness – death.

  14. When salt is applied to a wound, it stings. I was wondering if salt helped heal a wound. This on Google Search: salt alone is a drying agent & it’s widely used for preserving food from bacteria and decaying, because of its’ properties. If applied to wound, it would naturally helps to disinfect and stop the bleeding. The stinging pain one has is because it kill some tissue and cells in the process of dry healing.”
    So I believe when the “salt” of Truth is applied to the wounds of sin and unrighteousness, the Christian ‘salt’ should help dry the wound and the ‘ligh’t helps drive out the corruption.festering there.

  15. “Can you make it salty again? It will be thrown out and trampled underfoot as worthless.”
    This seems to say to me that if we are not the rightousness of salt, then we are sinning…and sinning willfully because we know we are called to live as salt in this earth if we are really followers of Jesus. We will be trampled underfoot as worthless because we have treated Jesus this way if I read Hebrews 10:26-29 correctly.
    “For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful expectation of judgment, and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries. Anyone who has rejected Moses’ law dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace? “

  16. Debi, that Scripture calls to mind a verse in a similar vein. “And whosoever shall fall on this Stone [the ROCK Jesus Christ] shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder” Matthew 21:44. The savor-less salt is to be thrown down and trampled on. The It seems that the Scripture is saying, if we cast ourselves upon Jesus Christ the Rock we will be broken but saved. But those, the unrighteous, upon whom the Judgment of Christ the Rock falls will be crushed to powder as the trampled salt.

  17. “But what good is salt if it has lost its flavor…” Salt is distinctly salt. It certainly isn’t pepper or some other mineral or spice. It is unique with a unique purpose. But if it loses its character or uniqueness, then it isn’t really salt anymore? Guess that’s when it becomes worthless. Being wishy-washy, lacking integrity or blurring the lines of our personal identity may make us worthless too… because who are we, really?

  18. “Salt affected soil often exhibits a white or grey salt crust on the ground. The pH of the soil is around 8.5 and the salt interferes with the growth of all but the most specially adapted plants.” This is a statement I read by the European Commission on Research of Soils.
    I wonder if the “salt of the earth” that Jesus calls us to be is not the caustic salinisation of “earth’s soil” that interferes with growth, but the kind of salt that pertains to “specially adapted human souls” who are ready to be harvested for the Kingdom of God?

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