Daily Devotional

“You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt has become tasteless, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled under foot by men.” Matthew 5:13

Have you ever wondered what Jesus meant when he said to his disciples, “You are the salt of
the earth?” In ancient times, his parable was particularly striking because salt was a rare
commodity before modern technology enabled us to harvest massive quantities of it.

In fact, salt was so valuable it functioned as a currency. Roman soldiers, for example, were
partially paid in salt. It was stored in a secure location called a “salarium,” from which we get
our word “salary.” If a soldier didn’t earn his pay, it was said: “He isn’t worth his salt!”

Salt is also valuable because it’s necessary for life. The human body is made up of .4% salt,
which means that a 200-pound individual has roughly 400 grams of sodium chloride in their
body – the equivalent of 80 teaspoons. Salt is a vital part of our body chemistry and needs to
be replenished continually as we sweat.

Someone once calculated over 1,400 different uses for salt. But here are three of the most

First, salt is used to enhance flavor. It takes bland, unappetizing things and makes them more
appealing. As Christians we should add flavor to the world. Our presence should cause people
to hunger for the delectable truths of God’s word.

Second, salt is used as a preservative. Before refrigeration, people salted foods, which allowed
them to be stored longer. Salt protects food from decay by preventing bacteria from growing.
Similarly, our presence in the world should prevent the moral decay of society. We should have
a purifying effect on the people around us.

Third, salt is used to promote healing. Over the centuries it has been used as a mouthwash, a
soothing remedy for bee stings, a skin cleanser for newborn babies, and a natural treatment for
cleansing wounds. It is a powerful antiseptic. In the same way, God intends the church to have
a powerful healing effect on the world. Remember Jesus said: “It is not those who are well who
need a physician, but those who are sick. I have not come to call the righteous but sinners to
repentance” (Lk 5:32).

To sum up, salt is incredibly valuable and necessary for life. It seasons things, preserves things,
and heals things. The same should be said of us as followers of Christ.

How salty are you?
New American Standard Bible (NASB)
Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation
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