TEEN TREE          OF LIFE

Salt and Light – Part 1

July 25, 2021

 

Before you begin, ask yourself a very important question: Do you believe that Jesus Christ died on The Cross for all of your sins? If you answered yes, you will need to be sure that you are filled with The Holy Spirit. How do you do this? You name your sins to God The Father in His Son’s Name. This is called Rebound. As a Christian, you must rebound any time you sin. This is taught in 1 JOH 1:9: If we confess [name] our sins [directly to God], He [God] is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins andto cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Now, if you have never believed that Jesus Christ died on The Cross for all of your sins, all you have to do is say to yourself that you believe in Him and you are saved! The Bible verse which teaches us this is ACTS 16:31: “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved.”

 

A well-known little poem about the Christian life says:

We are living a Gospel

A chapter each day,

By deed that we do,

By word that we say;

Men read what we live,

Whether faithless or true;

Say! What is the Gospel

According to you?

 

We’re going to begin this study entitled “Salt and Light” by looking at what the Gospel message is, according to your life.

 

Let’s look at MATT 5:1-16 (The Message Bible): When Jesus saw his ministry drawing huge crowds, he climbed a hillside. Those who were apprenticed to him, the committed, climbed with him. Arriving at a quiet place, he sat down and taught his climbing companions. This is what he said: “You’re blessed when you’re at the end of your rope. With less of you there is more of God and his rule. You’re blessed when you feel you’ve lost what is most dear to you. Only then can you be embraced by the One most dear to you. You’re blessed when you’re content with just who you are—no more, no less. That’s the moment you find yourselves proud owners of everything that can’t be bought. You’re blessed when you’ve worked up a good appetite for God. He’s food and drink in the best meal you’ll ever eat. You’re blessed when you care. At the moment of being ‘care-full,’ you find yourselves cared for. You’re blessed when you get your inside world—your mind and heart—put right. Then you can see God in the outside world. You’re blessed when you can show people how to cooperate instead of compete or fight. That’s when you discover who you really are, and your place in God’s family. You’re blessed when your commitment to God provokes persecution. The persecution drives you even deeper into God’s kingdom. Not only that—count yourselves blessed every time people put you down or throw you out or speak lies about you to discredit me. What it means is that the truth is too close for comfort and they are uncomfortable. You can be glad when that happens—give a cheer, even!—for though they don’t like it, I do! And all heaven applauds. And know that you are in good company. My prophets and witnesses have always gotten into this kind of trouble. Let me tell you why you are here. You’re here to be salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of this earth. If you lose your saltiness, how will people taste godliness? You’ve lost your usefulness and will end up in the garbage. Here’s another way to put it: You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven.”

 

The Lord Jesus Christ’s Sermon on the Mount is contained in The Book of Matthew chapters 5-7Matthew 5:1-2 (New International Reader’s Version) tells us the reason it’s known as the Sermon on the Mount: Jesus saw the crowds. So he went up on a mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him. Then he began to teach them. If we were to summarize the theme of The Sermon on the Mount in a single sentence, it could be: How to live a life that is dedicated to and pleasing to God, free from hypocrisy, full of love and grace, and full of wisdom and discernment.

 

The Sermon on the Mount is made up of the first of five sermons (teaching units) that Matthew shares from the Ministry of The Lord Jesus Christ. MATT 4:23–9:38 describes the Gospel as including teaching, healing, and calling people to follow Jesus Christ. The main theme of the Sermon is the greater righteousness that God requires of people in a relationship with him – a righteousness that comes through a whole heart dedicated to God. This is taught in MATT 5:48 (The Message Bible): “In a word, what I’m saying is, Grow up. You’re kingdom subjects. Now live like it. Live out your God-created identity. Live generously and graciously toward others, the way God lives toward you.”

 

Do you know what The Mosaic Law is? It’s the laws that God gave to Moses on Mount Sinai. It’s made up of 3 codices. Codex I is the Freedom Code which includes the Ten Commandments. Codex II is the Spiritual Code which includes The Lord Jesus Christ’s Saving Work on The Cross. Codex III is the Establishment Code which includes the civil statutes of Israel. Codices I and III protected human life, freedom, privacy, and property. Codex II charged individual Old Testament believers and the communicators of God’s Word with accurately presenting the Gospel and teaching of Bible doctrine within the nation. The Mosaic Law does not apply to the Church-Age believer who is to live under the Mystery Doctrine of the Church-Age.

 

Since the Death and Resurrection of The Lord Jesus Christ, the purpose of the Mosaic Law has been fulfilled and as a result, everyone who believes in Him is made right with God. This is taught in ROM 3:21-24 (The Message Bible): But in our time something new has been added. What Moses and the prophets witnessed to all those years has happened. The God-setting-things-right that we read about has become Jesus-setting-things-right for us. And not only for us, but for everyone who believes in him. For there is no difference between us and them in this. Since we’ve compiled this long and sorry record as sinners (both us and them) and proved that we are utterly incapable of living the glorious lives God wills for us, God did it for us. Out of sheer generosity he put us in right standing with himself. A pure gift. He got us out of the mess we’re in and restored us to where he always wanted us to be. And he did it by means of Jesus Christ.

 

This message is repeated in ROM 10:4 (New International Reader’s Version): Christ has fulfilled everything the law was meant to do. So now everyone who believes can be right with God.

 

            Christ is the perfect revelation of God, thus our faith in Him leads us to the righteousness of God. This is taught in ROM 1:17 (New International Reader’s Version): The good news shows God’s power to make people right with himself. God’s power to be made right with him is given to the person who has faith. It happens by faith from beginning to end. It is written, “The one who is right with God will live by faith.” (Habakkuk 2:4) Righteousness is the God-given quality imputed to man once he has believed in Jesus Christ.

 

When Our Savior died on The Cross, He bore all the sins of humanity and became sin for us. As a result, everyone who believes in Him is made righteous with God. Look at 2 COR 5:21 (New International Reader’s Version): Christ didn’t have any sin. But God made him become sin for us. So we can be made right with God because of what Christ has done for us.

 

Look at how Peter said it in 1 PET 2:24 (The Message Bible): This is the kind of life you’ve been invited into, the kind of life Christ lived. He suffered everything that came his way so you would know that it could be done, and also know how to do it, step-by-step.

He never did one thing wrong, Not once said anything amiss. They called him every name in the book and he said nothing back. He suffered in silence, content to let God set things right. He used his servant body to carry our sins to the Cross so we could be rid of sin, free to live the right way. His wounds became your healing. You were lost sheep with no idea who you were or where you were going. Now you’re named and kept for good by the Shepherd of your souls. The relationship between God and man, which was broken because of sin, is restored through the sacrifice of Jesus, the Lamb of God. Doesn’t that fill you with happiness?

{to be continued}

 

Scroll to Top