You are the salt of the earth. But, if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? (Matt. 5:13a NIV)
Have you ever wondered why Christians are referred to as “the salt of the earth?” In the above passage, Jesus is using a simile to teach His disciples that they are likened to salt as they go out to evangelize the world. Every Christian is called to be a minister of reconciliation, sprinkled throughout the world just as salt is sprinkled on food. As a flavor enhancer, salt enhances the flavor of the food that has been seasoned with it.
Likewise, Christians are called the salt of the earth because, by their speech, a difference can be made in the lives of those who are perishing in this dying world. Jesus commanded His disciples to go throughout the world and make disciples of all nations, baptizing and teaching them about the “good news” of the gospel; (Matt. 28:19-20).
The lesson continues…
“But if salt loses it saltiness, it’s tasteless; it’s good for nothing, it’s worthless. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled by men”; (v.13b).
By comparison, the disciples are actually brought to an awareness that they can lose their zeal for the Gospel just as salt can become unsavory.
In Revelation 3:16, the Apostle John writes to the Church of Laodicea, saying, “So, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew you out of my mouth.”
The Church of Laodicea was filled with unconverted Christians who had become apathetic in their love for Christ. The passion and the zeal that was once there for the Gospel had diminished. Their lukewarm faith was hypocritical. They professed the gospel doctrine, yet they were indifferent in regards to needful matters. Jesus called for them to repent and live zealously for Him; (v. 19).
I equate an unsavory (or flavorless) Christian to being lukewarm, neither cold nor hot for the Gospel. Jesus never lost His passion or zeal for the mission He was called to fulfill, and neither should we.
“If the passion and the zeal that was once there is lost, can it be restored?”
From a personal perspective, I believe that spiritual saltiness can be replenished, and passion and zeal can be restored. By reading your Bible, diligently studying Scriptures, and reaching out to others to share the Gospel message, it’s likely that the passion that was once there will be rekindled. But, if your spirit man is malnourished, you will be weak, even powerless, and experience a lack of zeal for the Gospel.
When we’re focused on our mission, we can expect to remain seasoned (salty) saints, ready to evangelize the world; just as Christ walked, we’ll be able to follow His example. If you’ve lost your savor (saltiness), you cannot sprinkle the Word of the Gospel to those who need a savory taste.
“O Taste and see that the Lord is good.”
“Spread the Gospel!”