Jesus uses salt and light as metaphors of instruction for his followers. In both circumstances, he parallels their benefits when used and their ineffectiveness from lack of use. First, salt’s primary function during this time was as a preservative—keeping meats and other foods from going bad. In the same way, Jesus tells his followers they “are the salt of the earth.” It isn’t an option. As followers of Christ today, we are to be preserving agents in a lost world. Conversely, salt in that time and area was harvested from the Dead Sea and included many impurities that would break down the salt over time if not used. Salt not being used as intended became useless, without value.
Just like salt, Jesus uses light as an example of how his followers should be agents of truth and healing in the world. Shine brightly and don’t hide so others may know about God. How can you be salt and light?
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