“Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can you make it salty again? Have salt among yourselves and be at peace with each other.”
Mark 9:50, NIV
Wikipedia states that salt is essential for life in general, and saltiness is one of the basic human tastes. Salt is one of the oldest and most ubiquitous food seasonings, and salting is an important method of food preservation. Salt has been used for everything from currency to medicine. Salt can be an asset and salt can be a liability. The same mineral that can be used to save a life through its presence in human functioning can also be used to cut a life short through its overuse in consumption. Salt is both priceless when it comes to benefits and pricey when it comes to its liabilities.
Even Jesus had something to say about salt. He talks about salt in the Synoptic Gospels – Matthew, Mark, and Luke. In each instance, the Gospel writer has a slightly different version of what Jesus said, but they all tap into the essence of what it means to be a disciple of Christ. All three Gospels ask the question of how to make salt salty again once salt loses its saltiness? Matthew and Luke simply say that once salt loses its saltiness, it is good for nothing and needs to be discarded. However, Mark offers a bit of hope. Mark says that the solution is to “be at peace with each other.”
Even though Mark does not share the Sermon on the Mount, this line connects to Jesus’s words, “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God” (Matthew 5:9). Peace is an essential ingredient in working out our soul salvation as we strive to follow Christ and be like Christ.
We can’t be children of God, disciples of Christ if we are not willing to bring peace to the world and to be at peace with each other. Looking at the news, looking at our neighbors, looking at our country, looking at our world how we are doing? How are the children of God, called to be disciples of Christ, doing?
Amy G. Oden says, “We are the tastiness that adds salt to lives around us. We are light that makes plain the justice way of the kingdom of God. Jesus says we must be tasty and lit up in order to make a difference for God in the world. Neither salt nor light exists for themselves. They only fulfill their purpose when used, poured out.” (workingpreacher.org)
Prompt for Thought: How are we doing with our peacemaking? How can we create peace with each other? How can we be peace in this world? How can we be salty people?
Prayer for the Journey: God, please help your children become the disciples of Christ that you desire. Help us to find, keep, and share saltiness on this planet. Help us to be salty people. Always for your glory and always through your grace. In Jesus Name, Amen.