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This Little Light of Mine

The Sermons of Jesus  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  29:33
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Introduction

When I was a child, we used to sing a song and make hand motions. I’m betting you’ll know it. Join me if you remember...
This Little Light of Mine
This little light of mine Esta pequeña luz mía I'm gonna let it shine La dejaré brillar This little light of mine Esta pequeña luz mía I'm gonna let it shine La dejaré brillar This little light of mine Esta pequeña luz mía I'm gonna let it shine, La dejaré brillar Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine Brillará, brillará, brillará
I'm gonna let it shineLa dejaré brillar
I'm gonna let it shine La dejaré brillar
This little light of mine Esta pequeña luz mía
I'm gonna let it shine La dejaré brillar
Hide it under a basket? No! I’m gonna let it shine
That song comes from our text for today as we continue in the Sermon on the Mount, Matthew 5...
This little light of mine Esta pequeña luz mía
Matthew 5:13–20 NASB95
13 “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. 14 “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden; 15 nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. 16 “Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven. 17 “Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. 18 “For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished. 19 “Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever keeps and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. 20 “For I say to you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven.
I'm gonna let it shine, La dejaré brillar
Pray with me...
Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine Brillará, brillará, brillará
Matthew 5:13–15 NASB95
13 “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. 14 “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden; 15 nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house.
Father, I thank You and I praise Your Mighty and Most Holy Name. Thank You for allowing us to come into Your presence today. I ask Father that you would cleanse us and prepare for us to hear Your words for us today. May we each be vessels of Your blessing as we gather and praise You together. God I beg You for clarity of mind, precision of speech and a heart for Your people as I speak today. May the name of Your Son, our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ be exalted in Los Fresnos on this Lord’s Day. It is in that name of Jesus Christ that I ask these things. Amen

I. Are You Salty? -

Matthew 5:16–20 NASB95
16 “Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven. 17 “Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. 18 “For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished. 19 “Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever keeps and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. 20 “For I say to you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven.
Matt 5:16
[PRAY]

I. Are You Salty? -

I don’t mean the modern definition of the word “salty”, which means sarcastic and angry. Sarcasm is not a love language. It does not carry the gospel with it. It carries alienation and brokenness with it.
Instead I mean salty in the sense...
Sarcasm is not a love language. It does not carry the gospel with it. It carries alienation and brokenness with it.
Matthew 5:13 NASB95
13 “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.
Salt of the earth? Tasteless salt made salty again? What is Jesus saying here?
Salt in ancient Jerusalem was impure, it came from the shores of the Dead Sea. Our salt, pure salt, cannot lose its taste but it can be diluted. Impure salt can become diluted and wash the salt out leaving behind sandy grit that is worthless and offensive to the mouth.
Jesus is telling the disciples that they have the salt of the Gospel within them. The Prophets were salt to Israel. The apostles were to be salt to the whole earth. And by extension you and I, as disciples of Christ are to be salt here at home and around the world.
The
WE are the salt of the earth!
Jesus is telling the disciples that they have the salt of the Gospel within them. The Prophets were salt to Israel. The apostles were to be salt to the whole earth. And by extension you and I, as disciples of Christ are to be salt here at home and around the world.
The disciple of Christ that refuses to allow the gospel to impact the lives of those around them is worthless. Does your life display the love of Jesus Christ and the fruit of the Spirit? Or is your life unsavoury, void of the Gospel? When people look at you, do they see and hear the message of Christ lived out or do they see something vulgar and mundane?
What Jesus is saying is that by virtue of our position, as disciples of Christ, we are to have influence in the world for the name of Christ. We CAN and MUST speak out the name of Christ WHEREver and WHENever we have the opportunity!
The Prophets were salt to Israel. The apostles were to be salt to the whole earth. And by extension you and I, as disciples of Christ are to be salt here at home and around the world.
The Prophets were salt to Israel. The apostles were to be salt to the whole earth. And by extension you and I, as disciples of Christ are to be salt here at home and around the world.
Matthew Henry, a Welsh minister and Bible commentator had this to say about the saltiness of the Gospel message.:

The doctrine of the gospel is as salt; it is penetrating, quick, and powerful (Heb. 4:12); it reaches the heart Acts 2:37. It is cleansing, it is relishing, and preserves from putrefaction.

What Jesus is saying (and Henry) is that by virtue of our position as a disciple of Christ, we are to have influence in the world for the name of Christ. We CAN and MUST speak out the name of Christ WHEREver and WHENever we have the opportunity!
When was the last time you shared your faith in Christ with someone?
Peter Preaches the Gospel
shared your faith in Christ with someone?
On the day of Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit came upon the disciples, Peter stood before the gathering and proclaimed boldly the Gospel of Jesus Christ. - ,
- ,
Acts 2:37–38 NASB95
37 Now when they heard this, they were pierced to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brethren, what shall we do?” 38 Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
Acts 2:37
Acts 2:37-38
…and skipping to verse 40...
Acts 2:
Acts 2:40–41 NASB95
40 And with many other words he solemnly testified and kept on exhorting them, saying, “Be saved from this perverse generation!” 41 So then, those who had received his word were baptized; and that day there were added about three thousand souls.
Acts 2:37–41 NASB95
37 Now when they heard this, they were pierced to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brethren, what shall we do?” 38 Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 “For the promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off, as many as the Lord our God will call to Himself.” 40 And with many other words he solemnly testified and kept on exhorting them, saying, “Be saved from this perverse generation!” 41 So then, those who had received his word were baptized; and that day there were added about three thousand souls.
Peter was being salty that day!
Peter was being salty that day! He allowed the Gospel to pour out of him and impact those in the marketplace that day. And the salt of the Gospel pierced the people to the heart and they accepted Jesus Christ and were baptized.
Acts 2:37 NASB95
37 Now when they heard this, they were pierced to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brethren, what shall we do?”
Acts 2:
Peter was being salty that day!
He was allowing the Gospel to pour out of him and impact those in the marketplace that day. And the salt of the Gospel pierced the people to the heart and they turned to accept Jesus Christ.
He was allowing the Gospel to pour out of him and impact those in the marketplace that day.
He allowed the Gospel to pour out of him and impact those in the marketplace that day. And the salt of the Gospel pierced the people to the heart and they accepted Jesus Christ and were baptized. These people were transformed by the Gospel message that Peter gave that day.
The Bottom Line About Salt
While salt is distinct and separate from the food it touches, it transforms the food into something completely different. It can promote healing as an antiseptic. It is a drying agent.
Salt changes whatever it touches. While it is distinct and separate from whatever it touches, when it comes in contact with food, it transforms the food into something
We, as disciples of Christ, are distinct and separate from the world around us. We are called to be different. When we touch the world, we should instantly transform and change it to become something better. When we fail to do this, we are just like salt that has lost its savour.
We, as disciples of Christ, are distinct and separate from the world around us. We are called to be different. When we touch the world, we should instantly transform and change it to become something better. When we fail to do this, we are just like salt that has lost its savour.

II. Are You Shining Your Light? -

Matthew 5:14
Matthew 5:14–16 NASB95
14 “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden; 15 nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. 16 “Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.
Jesus switches from salt to light in this passage.
Matthew 5:13–16 NASB95
13 “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. 14 “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden; 15 nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. 16 “Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.
In addition to saltiness of the Gospel, we are to shine like a light in the world, doing good works and glorifying God in heaven. This idea of darkness and light is a theme that carries forward from the Old Testament...
Psalm 119:105 NASB95
105 Your word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path.
Jesus speaks to this theme and we see it throughout the New Testament...
Ephesians 5:8 NASB95
8 for you were formerly darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord; walk as children of Light
Jesus ties this idea of being a light in the darkness to the Christian activity of good works.
Jesus tells us here in verse 16 that we can impact our world through our good works. When we do this we are not working for our own glory but for the glory of God. In fact, when the world looks at us, they expect to see good works taking place:
We must care for the widows and orphans in their distress.
We must feed the hungry and clothe the naked.
We must visit the prisoner.
We must give shelter to the refugee.
Our grandparents used to call this “the Christian way.” Meaning this is what a Christian does when he encounters those with trouble in life.
James 1:27 NASB95
27 Pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world.
But this is not our nature. When we trust in our own nature, we feel like we have to take care of ourselves first. We squirrel away a little nest egg so we can take it easy in our retirement. But in the process, we deny the widow and the orphan in their distress. We turn our backs on the single mother trying to raise a family. We would starve the hungry and let the naked take care of themselves while we never forsake our own needs.
Matthew 25:40 NASB95
40 “The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’
The Christian way is contrary to Human Nature. But the Christian way shines a light in the world that the world cannot ignore. People sit up and take notice when Christians act like real Christians.
Matthew 25:45 NASB95
45 “Then He will answer them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’
Matt 25:
Matthew 25:40–45 NASB95
40 “The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’ 41 “Then He will also say to those on His left, ‘Depart from Me, accursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels; 42 for I was hungry, and you gave Me nothing to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me nothing to drink; 43 I was a stranger, and you did not invite Me in; naked, and you did not clothe Me; sick, and in prison, and you did not visit Me.’ 44 “Then they themselves also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, or thirsty, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not take care of You?’ 45 “Then He will answer them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’
Matt 25:40
And they'll know we are Christians by our love, by our love.

B. Light of the World

On the other hand, the world also notices when the Christian fails to act like a real Christian. And nothing drives them away from Christ faster.

III. What Does Light Shining Have To Do With The Law? -

Matthew 4:17–19 NASB95
17 From that time Jesus began to preach and say, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” 18 Now as Jesus was walking by the Sea of Galilee, He saw two brothers, Simon who was called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea; for they were fishermen. 19 And He said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.”
Matthew 5:17–19 NASB95
17 “Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. 18 “For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished. 19 “Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever keeps and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
Up until this point, Jesus has been telling His disciples why they must live life in a certain way as His disciples:
influencing the world by transforming it when they come in contact with it.
remaining pure and doing good works at every opportunity that presents itself
But he shifts his message slightly in verse 17.
Some commentators feel that this shift into a discussion of the law and the prophets is an unnatural disconnect in Jesus’ logic. But I feel this is completely connected as a compare and contrast kind of logic.
Jesus said very clearly that He did not come to do away with the Law, but to fulfill the Law.
Jesus wants His disciples to act in a certain way. This Christian way, as we have called it, is contrasted drastically with the common practice of the Pharisees during Jesus time.
Jesus was telling His disciples that He did not want them practicing life in the Pharisees’ way.Jesus said very clearly that He did not come to do away with the Law, but to fulfill the Law. The word for fulfill here means to “make full” (like filling a cup with water) or to “make complete”.
Jesus said very clearly that He did not come to do away with the Law, but to fulfill the Law.
The word for fulfill here means to make full (like filling a cup with water) or to make complete.
The Pharisees were famous for taking the Mosaic Law and adding more rules and commentary to the Law. This made the law as it existed during Jesus’ day a burden to keep. However the Pharisees excelled in keeping the Law.
I read on one modern day Jewish blog that even today the Pharisees idea of making the Law fluid by allowing for additions to the Law is what makes it brilliant. I couldn’t disagree more and I think that is what Jesus is saying here.
Jesus is saying the Law is complete. Because He fulfills the Law, there is no more need to add to it and burden the people with unnecessary rules. Jesus came to trump the Law with Love. He clearly gave us the greatest commandment in the Law when one of the Pharisees trained in the understanding of the Mosaic law asked him...
I say that Jesus came to trump the Law with Love. He clearly taught us that the greatest commandment in the Law when one of the Pharisees trained in the understanding of the Mosaic law asked him...
Matthew 22:36–40 NASB95
36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” 37 And He said to him, “ ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 “This is the great and foremost commandment. 39 “The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 “On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.”
Matthew 22
THIS is what Jesus was talking about when He said that He came to fulfill the Law.
HE fulfilled the Law by coming to practice and teach Love… Love for God and Love for others around us. When we keep these two practices as our focus in life, we are living our lives as a parable of Christ, that is, we are living in the Christian way. And by living in this way, we begin to see the Beatitudes and the Fruit of the Spirit manifest in our lives.
When we keep these two practices as our focus in life, we are living our lives as a parable of Christ, that is, we are living in the Christian way.
And by living in this way, we begin to see the Beatitudes and the Fruit of the Spirit manifest in our lives.
Life is too short to live in any other way. And when we do live in any other way, we either begin to live life in a completely worldly way that rejects Christ or we begin to depend upon a set of false rules to live by… this makes us into modern day Pharisees, every bit as detestable to Jesus as the Pharisees of His day.

B. Fulfilling the Law and Prophets

And when we do live in any other way, we begin to dep

IV. Righteousness & The Kingdom of Heaven -

Matthew 5:20 NASB95
20 “For I say to you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven.
We talked about this verse a couple of weeks ago...
How Are We Supposed to Surpass the Righteousness of the Scribes and the Pharisees?
Jesus is living at a time when the religious system is ruled by the Pharisees.
We like to vilify the Pharisees, while in fact these were righteous upstanding members of the community. They followed all the rules and did things just so in a right manner. But I said it last time and I’ll say it again, "the focus of the Pharisees was on the wrong thing.” The Pharisees were focused on conduct-that is, works and actions-rather than focused on character-the attitudes and focus of the heart.
conduct = works and actions
character = attitudes and focus of the heart
Jesus is telling us that when our focus is right, that our actions will follow properly.
Our conduct flows out of our character rather than vice versa.
This was the whole problem with the Pharisees...
Matthew 23:27–28 NASB95
27 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which on the outside appear beautiful, but inside they are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness. 28 “So you, too, outwardly appear righteous to men, but inwardly you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.

Conclusion

I always want to take the opportunity to use verses like this to challenge us to be the very best that we can be for Christ, who lives through each of us that call Him master. Sometimes this can come across as heavy-handed for those who live their lives as salt and light in the world.
And I don’t want you to mistake my passion for the work of Christ to be bullying you from the pulpit.
Sometimes this can come across as heavy-handed for those who live their lives as salt and light in the world.
But I know that week after week we have people here who are either new in their faith or in the position to return to Christ after a time of drifting away from the Lord.
I also want for those of us who follow Christ to be constantly examining our work and our motives to make certain that we are doing everything that we possibly can for the advancement of the kingdom here in Los Fresnos. If we are to be striving for anything in this world, it is to put more of Christ in our work and in our community.
So as I do week after week, I want to offer you the opportunity to reflect on your life and to respond to whatever work that the Holy Spirit is doing in you through this message.
I would ask you a few questions and have you reflect before I invite you to respond in just a few moments.
How are you doing in this regard? Are you taking every opportunity to be salt to the world around you? Do you share your faith and shake the gospel salt within you out upon the people that are around you? Are you a light for Christ in your workplace and neighborhood?
Do you carry the love of Christ with you wherever you go? When you meet people for the first time or the fiftieth time, do you care enough about them to find out what is going on in their lives?
Or are you so consumed with your own troubles that you mind is always full to the brim with that?
If you are here today and you are filled with trouble and anxiety, I would invite you to come lay it at the feet of Christ. You may come to the altar here if that is a comfort to you. If your knees keep you from kneeling at the altar, please come and sit here as you pray and do work with God. If you need someone to pray with you, I am here at the front or one of our prayer team may pray with you as well.
Are you a Christian that is far from God? Do you feel the Holy Spirit tugging at you to respond today? I would beg you to respond.
Maybe you’re here and you have come to understand that you need Christ. If that is you, would you please let me know. I’ll ask everybody to close their eyes and pray. Would you raise your hand and let me know if that’s you?
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