Yuk! I made myself a boiled egg and toast sandwich for lunch and forgot something. I forgot to spread the pat of butter around the piece of toast before placing the sliced boiled egg on top. On the outside the sandwich looked delicious and my first few bites were very delicious. However, when I bit into the middle of the sandwich I got a nasty surprise…a mouth full of butter. This was not delicious. Butter that isn’t spread around tastes awful, yet butter when spread properly adds such a wonderful flavor to bread that a dry crusty slice becomes delicious. This made me think about life.
If I hold on to an ice-cube and don’t put it to the use it is intended, it will harm my skin and make a mess as it melts. If I fry pasta instead of boiling it first, it loses its appeal as my dinner. And if I forget to spread the butter around my toast it is not enjoyable, edible for sure, but not enjoyable.
I can also remember one time when I was baking cookies that I thought I was putting baking powder in the recipe but instead I had grabbed the alum…my brother came through and grabbed some fresh-out-of-the-oven cookies and practically swallowed them whole. He thought I had tricked him as his mouth was puckered from the awful taste of too much alum. I had to throw out the whole batch as they were not fit for consumption. Alum made them look beautiful, nice and round and golden, but the taste was awful.
The Bible has some examples to look at concerning salt. Jesus teaches in Matthew 15:13 that we Christians are the salt of the earth.
You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt has become tasteless, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled under foot by men, (New American Standard Bible, NASB).
We all know what salt it, but have you tasted someone’s cooking that had too little or too much salt? I can remember eating green beans in a restaurant in the South that were so salty I had to drink water after just one bite! Yuk! On the other hand who wants to eat popcorn without salt? So I think we can establish the fact that salt usage is important to the enhancement of our taste.
Salt is also used to preserve foods, think ham, jerky or dill pickles. I remember my Mom once canning some dill pickles and she couldn’t remember whether she put salt in her brine or not, thinking that she did, she continued with her pickle making. Let’s just say that we threw out the pickles later in the year because they were mushy and didn’t taste good. Are you, dear Christian losing your flavor and being trampled under by people?
There’s another example from the Bible we need to look at, about leavening. The Apostle Paul was writing to the Church at Corinth and said this concerning leavening.
Your boasting is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump of dough? Clean out the old leaven so that you may be a new lump, just as you are in fact unleavened. For Christ our Passover also has been sacrificed. Therefore let us celebrate the feast, not with old leaven, nor with the leaven of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth, 1 Corinthians 5:6-8, (NASB).
He goes on in the following verses to explain that he wants the people within the Church, Christians, to judge each other and make certain they are living righteous lives. Apparently someone within the fellowship of that Church was not living a righteous life. He continues a great lesson in the next chapter.
All things are lawful for me, but not all things are profitable. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be mastered by anything, 1 Corinthians 6:12, (NASB).
If you think that you can take this verse out of context and do what your humanness wants to do then you haven’t read the end of the chapter.
Flee immorality. Every other sin that a man commits is outside the body, but the immoral man sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, 1 Corinthians 6:18-20, (NASB).
Wow! My body is a temple where the Holy Spirit resides!!! Doesn’t that just about blow your mind? So what is the point I’m trying to make here?
Being a pious, cranky, unapproachable Christian is kind of like eating a pat of butter that wasn’t spread out properly, or a dish that is too salty. Have you ever encountered such a person? Be nice and please don’t use me as an example! Seriously though, I have chatted with Christians who leave a bad taste in my mouth at the end of the conversation and I bet you have too. We need to judge ourselves, evaluate what we say and how we say it, how we live our life, whether we are honest or a gossip. We need to make certain we are not too salty, too strong in the way we speak, too blunt.
On the other hand, we also need to make certain that we are salty enough. If the message we live is one that makes others question whether we are a Christian or not, then we may be losing our saltiness and what did Jesus warn us about salt that has lost its flavor? We get trampled under the feet of men, or the way I would say, we have emulated the world to the degree that others can’t see a difference. I have met wonderful people who I thought were Christians on Sunday at church; however during the week I questioned if they really are. They may look good and act well on Sunday, but seeing them and interacting with them away from other Christians I see no difference in their behavior or attitude than I see among the unsaved. This ought not to be.
So what is a Christian to do? Well, first of all we need to know our Bible well enough to be different from the world, but we don’t have to be weird. We can still drive a car and live with modern conveniences if we choose to, but our attitude should be charitable and kind and patient…hmmm isn’t there something about this in 1 Corinthians? Read chapter thirteen and you will see what is good for us to do.
Until next time…..Katherine