Salt and Light

Matthew 5:13-16

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.”

We have all asked for or have cooked with salt, and if you grew up in the church, then you grew up singing that song, “This little light of mine, I'm gonna let it shine.” Or if you are camping, you place the lantern as high as you can. But why do we do this?

When cooking we add salt to enhance the flavor of what we are cooking or eating to take better. To us salt may only be used for one thing, and that is cooking. But to the intended audience, salt was so much more valuable and had many uses. Salt was used in practicing medicine, preserving meat, killing weeds, and many other uses. Salt was special and needed. 

Same goes for light, we do not place a lamp behind a couch or under a blanket. We place it on a table or we put lights in ceiling so we can see more. Of course the original readers of Matthew did not have lamps and ceiling lights like we do, so they would have to make sure that the candles were high enough nothing would fall on them and they had as much light as it aloud. 

Salt and light were important to them for everyday life. So what would have happened if salt would lose its saltiness or the light went out? It would be dark and tasteless, only good to be walked on. So as Christians, what good are we to the kingdom, if we lose our saltiness or hide our light? Jesus says, he has no use for us. 

Jesus calls us the salt and light of the world. We change the world that is around us. We bring flavor to broken and flavorless world. We shine light into a world that is dark. In other words we are the catalyst to the world. A catalyst is something that is used to change the chemicals around it, without being changed and it cannot be changed back.

When salt is added to food it cannot be taken away and when a light is shined into a dark room the darkness is gone. As Christ followers, we are called to be catalyst, to change the world around us. Our saltiness and light are to shine and change those who are around us.


  1. Do you think that you are a catalyst to those around you?
  2. If so, how can you continue to be the slat and light around you?
  3. If not, what can you do to rekindle the light and gain your saltiness back? 


Father, we are called to be the salt and light in the world around us. Help us to reach and change the lives of those around us. Help us to be the city on a hill and your light to shine into the world. 

Clay Merriman, May 26, 2020
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