“Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise! Give thanks to him; bless his name! For the LORD is good; his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations.”
Psalms 100:4-5

Salt and Light

You are the salt of the earth…you are the light of the world
During a visit to the head quarters of the Salvation Army in London I
listened to speaker talking about the vision and activities of the
church today. They were involved in a campaign to prevent legislation
that would allow casinos to be built close to vulnerable
neighbourhoods. The Salvation Army realised that many people in these
poorer neighbourhoods would be tempted to gamble in order make some
money and from experienced they knew that this would lead to debt,
more poverty and an increase in family and community breakdown. As a
result of the campaign the proposed legislation was rejected the
neighbourhoods were protected from the negative influence casinos
would have had.
This is a good example of how the church can influence society. Jesus
didn’t come just to save souls so that people could go heaven. He came
to establish the kingdom of God. He instructed his disciples to pray
for His kingdom to come and for His will to be done on earth as in
Jesus said: ‘You are the salt of the earth.’   As the salt of the
earth it is the responsibility to influence society for God’s good and
the prevent decay. Jesus also said: ‘You are the light of the world.’
As the light of the world it is our responsibility to reflect the
light of Jesus Christ. This happens when people see our good works,
which includes  all that we do and say, they will glorify God.
Strikingly the instruction about being salt and light flows out of
what Jesus taught in the beatitudes and the two teachings can’t be
separated. In order to be salt and light the core values of the
beatitudes need to be evident in our lives. We can’t influence society
and bear authentic witness of Christ without being poor in spirit,
merciful, meek and pure in heart.  We can’t separate our identity and
character from our responsibility. The one flows out of the other.