Matthew 5-6~ Day 3~ Who is Jesus talking to?

I had a new thought today reading "You are the salt of the earth.  But if the salt should lose it's saltiness, how can it be made salty again?  It's no longer good for anything, but to be thrown out and trampled under people's feet." (5:13)

I have always read that as if it were said to all Christians for all time (which it can be interpreted that way).  However, today, I was reading it thinking of the audience to whom Jesus was speaking.  They were all Jewish.  They already understood what Jesus meant when he said they were the salt of the earth.  They were the one group of people, on the entire globe, that God chose to reflect what it meant to be monotheistic and point the way to a right relationship with God.
Yet, Jesus is saying to them, if they lost that purpose....they were good for nothing....😧 Jewish people who don't look to Jesus as their Messiah have lost their role of being part of the "chosen people", pointing the way to Him.

This was the first time I read this verse like the warning that it is.  These Jewish people are being warned, by Jesus himself, of the reality that was soon to take place.  Jesus was saying, "If you don't show the world the righteousness that comes from me, you are not a true Israelite.  The true Israelites will still be the chosen people to point the world into a right relationship with God.  Those who believe in Christ as the Messiah, are the true Israelites.  (That means you and me~ see Hebrews for more on that.)

When the "true Israelites" in this crowd heard what Jesus was saying, they would turn and point others to Jesus. Those Jewish people caused all of us, in future generations, to also, "give glory to your God in heaven" (5:16b), because we got to benefit from their good deed of sharing the good news.

It's interesting how scripture works.  It's timeless. It's alive.  It spoke to the people in that audience and it still speaks to us now.  As a true Israelite, I don't want to lose my purpose, my saltiness, my light... I want to keep pointing people to Jesus! 


Jasmine Hadley said…
I love reading through these chapters to help encourage me continue to live as Jesus teaches us to. In chapter 6 verses 19-24 where He talks about laying up treasures in Heaven and I am always encouraged as a follower of Christ my treasure should be stored eternity not temporary! Jesus is our guide to show nothing on this earth will last, we need to invest in things of eternity. Jesus knows we live in a world pulling us to live in it but He is pulling our hearts to Him as our treasure! I take great rest in that since it’s so easy to get pulled in this temporal world and the next passage after that Jesus explains to not be anxious for our Heavenly Father knows our needs! Thankful that Jesus knows our hearts and gives us what we need!
I like what you said, that the "world pulling us to live in it but He is pulling our hearts to Him". I love that! It's so true! I want to let Jesus win this tug-a-war!

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