Matthew 5:10-12 Jesus fully expected that his followers would suffer persecution. The world reviles, persecutes, and utters evil against us because of righteousness’ sake and because of our association with Jesus. We do not seek negative attention, but when it comes, we can take comfort knowing that the world persecuted the prophets before us in much the same way. What’s more, Jesus tells us to “rejoice and be glad” since our reward is great.
Matthew 5:13 Based on the concern for losing its taste, we can conclude that Jesus’ point here is that his follows should retain their distinctive salty flavor. We should not blend in with the world too well. Swapping out Christ’s teachings for the world’s fads and whims results in a comprised Christianity that is as useful as flavorless salt. We need not seek to be weird in the eyes of the world but instead endeavor to follow Jesus’ teachings, and let the chips fall where they may.
Matthew 5:14 Unlike monasteries and hidden communes, Christ’s followers have an important role to play as the lights of the world. God’s ultimate goal for His city on a hill is to draw all nations to Himself (Isaiah 2:2-4; 42:6; 49:6; 60:1-3, 18-22). We seek to embody God’s future Kingdom in the present by how we live now, both individually and communally. As the city on the hill, our goal is to attract and invite.
Matthew 5:15-16 A light exists to illuminate. Putting a lamp under a basket doesn’t make any sense. Likewise, we cannot limit our faith to the privacy of our homes and churches. We also have an illuminating, prophetic, public role to play, just like Jesus did. Our goal is for others to see our good deeds so that they give glory to God. In the end, God will wipe away our tears and remove our reproach (Isaiah 25:6-9).
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