8. YOU ARE THE SALT OF THE EARTH:
As if the illustration of the light is not good enough, Jesus decided to reaffirm some of his injunctions to us using another metaphor. This is an extremely powerful illustration. There are two main functions of the salt especially in the days of Jesus.
The very first function of salt is to act as a preservative.
What is a preservative? A substance used to preserve foodstuffs, wood, or other materials against decay.
Can you just see how powerful that is, that is what the church and a believer is meant to be. We were raised up by the father of light to be a preservative to our cultures, nations and societies. Our role is to be right there in every place where there could be potential decay.
If politics has the potential to decompose, we are supposed to be there, healing and preserving it. If the economy has the potential to decompose, the church and believers have the purpose to be there keeping and preserving it. If the entertainment industry has the potential to decompose, the church and believers need to be planted in their midst assuring preservation. If the educational system or the media, the art and culture stand in danger of decay, that is why God set up the church and raised the believers to preserve them.
This more than anything should convince the believer and the church that our primary role is to meet the needs of the society at large, not just minister to individual believers in the local church.
There is another aspect to the function of salt. Salt is also supposed to give taste to a product. Wow! What a huge responsibility the God of heaven is conferring on the church and on the believer. We are to give meaning to life, for everybody living in our countries. Our actions or inactions are to define the taste and the meaning life offers to people. If people’s lives are going to have meaning, it would depend on our actions, if people are going to lose the essence and meaning of life, it would be because of our inactions.
If we as the church therefore withdraw ourselves from the day to day running of our nations, that means we are showing ourselves as been irresponsible. It would mean we are saying that we don’t care If people find meaning to life or not. We would be refusing to give them a taste for life. It means we are denying their lives meaning.
9. THE SALT CAN LOSE ITS SALTINESS:
Ladies and gentlemen. Jesus was very candid with us. If the church and the believers refuse to perform, the consequence is damning. PERFORM OR LOSE RELEVANCE.
It is sad for me to observe around the world how the church is fast falling under this damnation. All over the world across the nations, the church is refusing to act as light in every aspect of the society, hence fast losing relevance. Jesus is not going to play around with us, listening to our arguments why we would not do what he said we should do, it is either we believe him or we don’t. If we indeed believe him, we would act as he says without any excuses or justifications of our failures.
10. WHEN THE SALT LOSES ITS SALTINESS, IT IS THROWN OUT AND TRAMPLED UNDERFOOT:
Oh how I see that happening all around me. All over the nations of the earth, the church and believers are been trampled underfoot. Is the secular society to blame? Not really. Maybe it’s the devil to blame? Not really. Is the darkness to blame? No, not really. I think we only have ourselves to blame. When the society that we are supposed to be training and managing is now looking down on us, it is because we have not acted as light. Our light has become darkness. Our salt has lost its saltiness. We are no longer good for National Transformation!
Brethren as blasphemous as this might sound, yet it is true that the church could actually lose its relevance in any given society. No wonder Jesus told his disciples, “Behold I give unto you power to step on serpents and scorpions and on all the powers of darkness and nothing shall by any means hurt you.” Luke 10:19. Jesus is clearly telling us here that the power and authority he gave to us is for offences. That is, we are to advance, we are to be proactive, we are to show initiative, we are to keep on been on the move, we are to keep on going, constantly going!
As soon as we stop though we are inundated by the power of darkness that we were supposed to be conquering. It is at this point we become a laughing stock and our salt is trampled under the feet.
The church of the lord Jesus Christ in the 21st century needs a total review of her doctrines about the society. We need to fundamentally revisit the role of the church and the believers in the day to day running of their nations. I understand why the teachings of the church has gone in the direction of the secular philosophy of separation of state and church. That position can be understood especially after the abuse of the Catholic Church in usurping the authority of the state and government in the Dark Ages.
The response of the church today though is like the case of throwing away the bath water together with the baby. Even though I clearly do not believe or advocate for the official church or any church whatsoever to be engaged in running government or state, I nevertheless cannot agree with the notion that believers should by any means be kept out of governance or from the day to day running of the nation.
This is because Christians and believers are equal citizens of their various nations just like every other citizen. They possess the same right and privileges as all other citizens including the right to vote and be voted for. No constitution of a democratic nation, keeps away the believers or Christian citizens from participating in the running of their countries.
It is even more ridiculous to think that God could by any means be separated from his creation. Since that can never happen it is not understandable why the Christians and the church would buy into the idea that Christians have no place in the day to day running of their nations.
The creator can never be separated from his creation. We are his agents through whom he runs his affairs on the earth. We are the only ones who can keep him from been present somewhere. The kingdom of God is within us, his light is within us. If we refuse to go out of the four walls of the church into all spheres of life, then we are to be blamed for it. When we believe in his injunctions and agree with him by stepping out to take his light into all spheres of life then he would be there to back us up. When we however refuse to believe or obey, then we become a laughing stock among the nations.
My understanding of the role of the church is clearly stated in 1Tim.3:15
“But if I am delayed, I write so that you may know how you ought to conduct yourself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.”
From this scripture, we see how Paul views the house of God (the church). The church is supposed to be playing two main roles, one is to establish the truth in all aspects of human endeavors. So the church is God’s headquarters from where his truths, his standards and his values are not just broadcasted or proclaimed but they are supposed to actually be established in all spheres of life. If that is so the focus of the church should be in building structures, systems and processes that could enhance this goal of establishing God’s truth in all works of life of a country.
Unfortunately, the church has left that role to the secular universities. History tells us though that the early Protestants, understood the role of the church in establishing God’s truth in all spheres of life. For this purpose, the church started institutions like Oxford, Cambridge, and Harvard, all established to proclaim the truth of God in all spheres of life. Today’s church has all but forgotten about this fundamental purpose of the local church. A review of our doctrine is long overdue. If we would refuse to go back to our fundamental calling as the church, I am afraid the church worldwide might soon become a thing of history.
The second fundamental role of the church according to 1Tim 3:15 is that the church should not just establish God’s truth in all spheres of life. The church is also responsible for upholding as a pillar those truths in the society. This is another area where the church has gone to sleep. Most of the church would probably not even be aware that they are supposed to be aggressively building systems and structures, processes, mechanisms, that would help uphold the truths of God’s kingdom in every area and strata of the society.
I think this is what Jesus meant when he spoke his parable in Matt.13:31-33.
“Another parable He put forth to them, saying: “The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and sowed in his field, which indeed is the least of all the seeds; but when it is grown it is greater than the herbs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and nest in its branches.” Another parable He spoke to them: The kingdom of heaven is like leaven, which a woman took and hid in three measures of meal till it was all leavened.”
When the church performs as her Head expects her to, then the expected result would be manifested as in this parable.
1. The kingdom of God would grow in any country, nation or sphere of life, like a mustard seed, no matter how small and insignificant its beginning is, the kingdom of God would always grow to become the most significant institution in any nation or culture.
2. In every nation and in all spheres of life the church would become so significant and so relevant that various “birds”, people groups, structures, organizations in the nation would constantly rely on the church for continuous survival.
3. The indwelled power in the kingdom is so overwhelmingly strong that it’s comparable to the power of the yeast. When a yeast is put in any amount of flour, it ferments the whole lump. In other words it takes over every environment it is put in. That is the way the kingdom of God through the believer is supposed to be working in our nations. That is why one of the greatest strategies of the church should be to strategically plant believers in all spheres of life that they might leaven the whole society with the seed of God’s righteousness and truth.
Such is the powerful vision of Jesus for his church. Indeed the earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof. But without the church arising to her roles and responsibility, this vision might never come to fruition.
It is my prayer that this message would ring a bell in the mind and spirit of believers worldwide, so much that the sleeping lion would arise all over the nations of the earth and make the kingdoms of this world to become the kingdom of our God and his Christ.
“Then the seventh angel sounded: And there were loud voices in heaven, saying, the kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!” Revelation 11:15.