"Salt and Light"
August 30, 2013
(Jesus said) "You are the salt of the earth .... You are the light of the world. ... let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven." Matthew 5:13a, 14a, 16b
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ:
The salvation story of Jesus Christ reaches around the world. So that the readers of our Daily Devotion may see the power of the Savior on a global scale, we have asked the volunteers of our International Ministry Centers to write our Friday devotions. We pray that the Spirit may touch your day through their words.
In Christ, I remain, His servant and yours,
Kenneth R. Klaus
Speaker Emeritus of The Lutheran Hour
We often hear, discuss and worry about the deterioration of family, community and society.
Frankly, it's not worth seeking the guilty ones of the current situation in society. It is enough to note the decline is the result of the nature of sinful humanity. In truth, we are all guilty and responsible to God.
At the same time, we know what we are seeing is not God's will.
Thankfully, the Lord in His infinite wisdom has given us that which can help preserve an orderly and God-fearing society. Those gifts from the Lord include government institutions, marriage, family and, of course, His church.
As Christian parents, Christian countrymen, and members of the Christian church, we are called to be part of a counterculture, which must work hard to help preserve the best of secular society. To that end our Savior said, "You (His disciples) are the salt of the earth: but if the salt loses its savor, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything."
He wants us to know that if we do not live as salty Christians in this sinful world we are not fulfilling our role in society. The day will come when the Lord will ask us why we didn't do what He asked of us.
Similarly, we know the world is in darkness. The Lord knows it too. To dispel that darkness is why He sent His Son into the world to be the one and only Light. So that we might live in the light, Jesus gave His life as the sacrifice that moves believing hearts from the darkness of despair and damnation to the light of life.
Now the Lord asks that His redeemed people reflect Jesus' blood-bought light. In telling us this, He is encouraging us to reflect the light of Jesus to those around us. That means we are to be the people who shine by spreading the Good News with our words and our lives.
In this sinful environment, we who have been redeemed should never be ashamed to share and show how Jesus has given us love, peace, joy and righteousness.
This, as Jesus tells us, can be done in a twofold way. First, as the salt of the earth, we should prevent that which is negative. That's what salt does. It prevents corruption and spoilage. Second, we should be light, doing the positive work of dispelling darkness.
In this way we can have a double influence on religious and secular societies. Even as we prevent corruption, malice, strife, injustice, lies, hatred and other sinful practices, we can also encourage the advancement of truth, justice and love, which reflect the values of those who are part of the kingdom of God.
THE PRAYER: Lord God, as Your redeemed child, I ask that You will use me to defeat evil and encourage that which is good, right and pleasing to You. This I ask in Jesus' Name. Amen.
Biography of Author: Today's international devotion was written by Judith de Midence who is a member of Cristo Rey Lutheran Church in Guatemala City, Guatemala. A friend and supporter of Lutheran Hour Ministries in that country, we thank her for this devotion. Based in Guatemala City since 1993, Lutheran Hour Ministries-Guatemala utilizes Project JOEL, Bible Correspondence Courses (BCC), Equipping the Saints (ETS), and a young theater group, Kerigma, to spread the Gospel in this country of more than 13 million people. In Latin America, LHM's ministry is known as Cristo Para Todas Las Naciones (CPTLN).
To learn more about our International Ministries, click here or visit www.lhmint.org.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries