Matthew 5:11-15
Mat 5:11 (KJB)
Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
Revile - Coarse or vulgar language, to defame, scold, or reproach
Persecute - Pursue or follow after
All manner - Spoken words or sayings
Here is a blessing that only the true believer will encounter and that is because they are bringing the truth. Anyone who claims to be a Christian and is walking with the world will receive the world’s approval. Those false churches who are ordaining sodomites are receiving the world’s approval but those who oppose it and see the sodomites as a mission field are receiving all kinds of reviling. Any true Christian who brings the truth which completely rejects the evil lifestyles of the world will not only face much reviling, but they will be persecuted to the utmost. This is why there is a rank hatred of Christians in every country because we desire to see people become saved but the truth is that man does not want to be saved. (John 3:19 KJV) And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. When we bring the light of the Gospel, unless that person’s heart has been prepared to receive it, they will outrightly reject it and not only reject it but will bring in other people to side with them against the Christian. This type of treatment is also an indicator that one is bringing the truth and as God sees it, they are being a testimony against evil and that is why the person is blessed, because they are receiving God’s approval and not the approval of the world which is under Satan’s authority. The fact is that the Lord Jesus Christ was hated when He was here on earth and is still hated as we read much literature condemning Him as a fraud and other slanderous comments. Since the Lord Jesus Christ is still being persecuted, it follows that His followers will also be persecuted. (Mat 10:22 KJV) And ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved. The persecution started the day John the Baptist came on the scene and will continue till the last day.
Mat 5:12 (KJB)
Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
Be exceeding glad - Be overjoyed or exult
The Lord is telling them that when they face this type of persecution and reviling that they should be overjoyed because of the persecution. All the suffering and persecution that the believers face in this world will be met in Heaven by a great reward. I don’t know what this reward is, but those who have suffered much will be given a great reward. Jesus then goes on to make a comparison that the true believers bringing the truth about the Lord Jesus Christ are like the prophets of old. All the old prophets which came to Israel were persecuted by Israel for bringing the truth. Israel was like a representation of the world, there were believers within her borders but the majority were unbelievers.
Jeremiah - Put in prison - (Jer 37:18 KJV) Moreover Jeremiah said unto king Zedekiah, What have I offended against thee, or against thy servants, or against this people, that ye have put me in prison?
Micaiah - Hated by the King - (1 Ki 22:8 KJV) And the king of Israel said unto Jehoshaphat, There is yet one man, Micaiah the son of Imlah, by whom we may inquire of the LORD: but I hate him; for he doth not prophesy good concerning me, but evil. And Jehoshaphat said, Let not the king say so.
John the Baptist - Beheaded - (Mat 14:8 KJV) And she, being before instructed of her mother, said, Give me here John Baptist's head in a charger.
Moses - Conspired against - (Num 16:3 KJV) And they gathered themselves together against Moses and against Aaron, and said unto them, Ye take too much upon you, seeing all the congregation are holy, every one of them, and the LORD is among them: wherefore then lift ye up yourselves above the congregation of the LORD?
Mat 5:13 (KJB)
Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.
Savour - Tasteless or Insipid
Here is a verse which has taken on many meanings. When the Lord mentions salt in this homily, He knew that it would have a special meaning to those who lived around the sea of Galilee. When the fishermen went out and brought back in a catch of fish, before the fish would spoil they would have to be cured. Since there was no such thing as refrigeration back then, they needed to use salt for the preservation of the fish or else they would lose the catch. If the salt was applied properly, the food would last quite a while. Jesus makes this allusion to salt which everyone would have known about in the physical realm. However, Jesus was speaking about something different than just the preservation of food. Salt had a tremendous place in the Mosaic offerings and since the people in this area, many probably being Samaritans, would be familiar with the Covenant of Salt made in the books of Moses.
(Num 18:19 KJV) All the heave offerings of the holy things, which the children of Israel offer unto the LORD, have I given thee, and thy sons and thy daughters with thee, by a statute for ever: it is a covenant of salt for ever before the LORD unto thee and to thy seed with thee. Whenever the Old Testament sacrifices were made, there was a mandatory adding of salt to the sacrifice. The salt represented an incorruptible covenant which was unable to be violated. It basically represented the perpetuity of that sacrifice. In other words, the adding of salt added an eternal dimension to the sacrifice which was, of course, a foreshadow of the Lord Jesus Christ’s final sacrifice for sin which also granted a perpetuity of the covenant of Grace.
(Lev 2:13 KJV) And every oblation of thy meat offering shalt thou season with salt; neither shalt thou suffer the salt of the covenant of thy God to be lacking from thy meat offering: with all thine offerings thou shalt offer salt. Every offering was to be salted with salt which symbolized the perpetuity of the sacrifice that foreshadowed the eternal covenant which was in the Lord Jesus Christ. It was an unchanging and pure covenant of grace which was foreshadowed by the covenant of salt.
What Jesus was pointing to in this verse was that if the salt that was in a person was real, then it meant that they would be the salt of the earth. Now this has nothing to do initially with preserving society because if that was the case, then this present world would never end and a new one be created. What Jesus is speaking about here is that if the Gospel which is within you, is the pure, truthful gospel, then you are able to salt those who hear and those who hear and receive it, will be in the perpetuity of the covenant of salt. In the last part of this verse Jesus speaks of a salt which would be trodden under foot. In the Valley of Salt, there is a place where there is a vein of salt which is very insipid and would have no value. In fact, it was used in the temple when the weather was bad to salt the floor so people would not slip and get hurt. That type of salt would be totally useless for food preservation. What Jesus has in view is that those who are the true salt of the earth are those who are truly saved and are bringing the true Gospel without any man-made additions such as works or signs and wonders or tongues, etc. The only way a person can be the salt of the earth is if they themselves are salt in the eternal covenant of salt, otherwise known as the true Gospel which preserves the soul for eternity.
Mat 5:14 (KJB)
Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.
(Isa 49:6 KJV) And he said, It is a light thing that thou shouldest be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved of Israel: I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth. Jesus speaks to the people using a different symbol. Not only are they the true salt but those who truly became saved are the light of the world because the world walks in darkness. (1 John 2:8 KJV) Again, a new commandment I write unto you, which thing is true in him and in you: because the darkness is past, and the true light now shineth. Those who are truly saved will have the light of the Gospel in them and just as they would be salt, they would also be light. When they bring the true Gospel, they are opposing the ways of the world in darkness. This light of the Gospel propels the true believers into going into all the world and preaching it and thus when that happens, the city on a hill is not hid but shining brightly. (Isa 60:3 KJV) And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising. When Jesus spoke to the people, the Gospel was still limited to Israel and the prophecy of Isaiah teaches that when many of the Jews started getting saved, then the Gentiles would be attracted to the light of the Gospel. We can see this plainly in the life of the Apostle Paul and his tremendous ministry to the Gentiles.
Mat 5:15 (KJB)
Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.
A person would not light a candle for the purpose of lighting a dark room and then go place the candle under a bushel, thus quenching the light. A light is lit in a house for the purpose of lighting up the dark home. This is the same mentality the believer must have. He is not given the Gospel for the purpose of keeping it to himself but is given the Gospel for the purpose of sending it forth for all to hear. Just as a light lights everyone in the house and is not biased as to who is receiving the light, the believer must send out the Gospel to as many as he or she can, not knowing whom the Lord has chosen for salvation. We send it forth without prejudice.