martes, 7 de febrero de 2017

Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time

by: Bro. Azam Vianney Mansha

Your are salt…

Salt has an important place in our kitchen and refectories. If you remember, in colonial India, Gandhi marched for salt. It is known as salt march. I believe that salt and light do not need any explanation. These two elements are well accepted in every society. You can find them in every house or I would say in any place of necessity. If I ask you, what are the two symbols, which fully represents Christianity? I am sure, your answer would be salt and light. RIGHT!

 In the Sermon on Mount, Jesus presented two images, namely salt and light (Matthew 5: 13-16) right after the beatitudes (Matthew 5: 1-12). In the ancient biblical world, salt was a precious product. It had no less than eleven functions in daily life.[1] It can be used for preservative or as an antiseptic or as a fire catalyst, or as a fertilizer. Most important, in the Jewish ritual temple, salt was strewn on the sacrifices (Leviticus 2: 13). A drink with salt was a common drink. It keeps the a person thirsty. Keeping this context in your mind, have you ever asked yourself, ‘why Jesus tells his followers to be salt?’ or ‘what uniqueness of the salt, Jesus wants his followers to adopt?’

Meditating on the qualities of the salt, we can understand one thing that salt does not exist for itself. It enriches others in different manners. Jesus demands his followers to be the salt of the earth, which means to be for others. Jesus calls his followers to be salty. Contextually speaking, being salty is to practice the beatitudes.

What does it mean to be salty?
A young salesman was disappointed about losing a big sale; and, as he talked with his sales manager, he lamented, “I guess it just proves you can lead a horse to water but you can’t make him drink.” The manager replied, “Son, take my advice: Your job is not to make him drink. Your job is to make him thirsty.”[2]

We are all salt of the earth. Our primary task is to make people thirsty for Jesus. How can, we make people thirsty? I believe, making people thirsty is secondary job. The first and foremost job is to satisfy our thirst with the Word of God. By keeping the Word in our heart and ponder as Mary did (Luke 2: 19), we can bring the fruit of the beatitudes in our society (John 15: 4).

[1] W. D. Davies and Dale C. Allison, Jr., Matthew. The International Critical Commentary, vol. I, eds. J. A. Emerton, C. E. B. Cranfield, G.N. Stanton (Edinburgh, Scotland: T & T Clark, Ltd, 1988), 472–73.
[2] David Jeremiah, Turning Point Daily Devotional, 4/17/06.

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