SALT OF THE EARTH AND THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD (Matthew
The human race is decaying because
of sin. So the disciple of Christ must be the SALT of the earth. To
become salt, one must be meek, merciful and righteous. . .and these
virtues should overflow so as to benefit others.
The disciples cannot salt that
which is already spoilt or rotten. They have to wait for the rotten
to be restored by Christ through repentance; then, and only then,
can they be salted and preserved.
To be set free from the rottenness
of sin is the work of Christ; but for a soul not to return to its
rottenness is the object of diligence and travail.
True disciples are meant to be
SALT; they are not meant to go about flattering and soothing. They
must hurt all men; this way they become dear to all good men but
hateful to all evil men.
"If the salt lost its savor,
wherefore shall it be salted with? It is good for nothing but
to be cast out and to be trodden underfoot." When does salt
lose its saltiness? If, when persecuted, reviled and lied about, one
becomes timid in pursuing what is good. When one becomes a partner
in the dissimulation of evil. Thus, one loses its saltiness and
deserves to be trodden underfoot by men.
But if the disciple continues to
salt the wounds of others in spite of persecution and revilings,
then he should rejoice for this is the very purpose of salt-- to
sting the corrupt while preserving the faithful. The censure of the
persecutors becomes the testimony of one's saltiness. But if the
disciple loses his saltiness, he will be spoken ill of and despised
by all. . . this is to be "trodden".
"You are the LIGHT of the
world," a light to the mind. A true disciple of Christ must
live a strict life because he is set before the eyes of all men and
contending in the amphitheatre of the world. He is not meant to be a
light in this small part of the country. He becomes conspicuous to
all as a city on a hill, as a light in a house.
The first apostles were not even
known in their town. Yet the good they wrought made their fame reach
the ends of the earth. The work of God cannot sink in silence and
It is Christ who lights up the
fire; but it is by our diligence that it keeps on burning for
ourselves and for others. Lies will not obscure the brightness of
the light; just keep on living a very strict way of life. It is the
way of life that keeps the light burning. A true light inspires
others to live the same way of life.
If we live good lives, we save
ourselves and others AND give glory to God. If we do the contrary,
we destroy ourselves, others and blaspheme God. If we live good
lives, those who speak evil of us really envy us and in conscience
admire and approve of our works. On the other hand, when wicked
people flatter you, they are really condemning you. Be the SALT of
the earth and the LIGHT of the world and even a thousand lies won't
be able to cover you.
St. John Chrysostom "On