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Sermon on the Mount study notes – Matthew 5:13-16

I have started a small group series on Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7). I am sharing my notes in case anyone else wants to use them with their group.

Sermon on the Mount – Part 4

Matthew 5:1-2:
Jesus wants to teach the crowds: Who are they? Jewish disciples: People who understand the
Scriptures (at least to a point). Notice from 7:28 the crowds still came along, but this teaching is for His disciples.

What does “blessed” mean?
Based on the first twelve verses, blessed means realizing our own wretchedness and need for a Savior. In other words, it is becoming/being a Christian.

Matthew 5:13-16:

Matthew 5:13:
Properties of salt:
• Made from stuff that can kill us (chloride, as in chlorine, which is poisonous to us; sodium is not very good for us by itself)
   o No one can see God’s face and live (Exodus 33:20), yet we shall see God face to face through Christ (1 Corinthians 13:12)
• Enriches flavor
   o 1 Peter 2:12 – We make life better as we point others to God’s Hugh standards.
• Preserves
   o 2 Peter 3:9 – God withholds His wrath until all who will be saved are saved.
• Can melt ice
   o Romans 10:13-14; Ezekiel 11:19 – The preaching of the gospel can change people’s hearts (via the Holy Spirit) from hardness to receptivity (see also Parable of the Sower/Seeds [Matthew 13:1-23], implying God may change the soil of the heart)
• Is used to make soap
   o 2 Corinthians 10:4-6 – We help cleanse the world through defending and spreading truth over lies of evil spirits/demons/Satan
• Has a high melting point (it is not easily melted/burned: paradoxically lowering the boiling point of water while making it harder for water to boil)
   o Isaiah 43:1b-3a – We hold back God’s wrath (see “Preserves” earlier) as the world gives more reason for His wrath to come. Further, we pull people from the fires of damnation (see Jude)

Can we lose our saltiness? (Refer, again, to Parable of the Sower – holding to the understanding that the first three refer to unsaved people [“churchians”?]) (Short answer: not really. Salt does not become not salt. It either is salt or is not.)

But how do “we” save them?

Matthew 5:14-16
• Firstly, v. 16: what does it mean to shine our light?
• It is there: “see your good works and glorify …”
• Secondly, What does it mean to glorify God?
• Mark 12:32-34; 1 Samuel 15:22; Hosea 6:6; Micah 6:8
• Glorifying God means obeying Him and showing love and mercy.
• We share the Gospel – Romans 10:13-17; Matthew 28:18-20
Hebrews 11:6 – It is impossible to please God, to glorify God, if we do not believe in Him properly if at all. So we share the Gospel. Our greatest good work.

How we shine:

• Ephesians 5:1-21
• Philippians 2:12-16
• 1 Peter 4:1-11

VerseD: Colossians 3:1

If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.
Colossians 3:1, ESV

We should not be focused on earthly goods and fame. Rather, we should “seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness” (Matthew 6:33) to be shared with the world, to make Christ famous.

VerseD: Matthew 2:10-11

When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy. And going into the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh.
Matthew 2:10‭-‬11, ESV

Do you get excited over signs that Christ is present?

Are you paying attention to the fact there are signs?

Are you bringing your gifts to bring glory to Christ? Being His hands and feet in a dark and lost world?

VerseD: Matthew 5:16

In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.
Matthew 5:16, ESV

Emmanuel – God with us – showed us the way to live and love others, that we may manifest the Lord through our actions toward and for others.

VerseD: John 8:12

Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
John 8:12, ESV

Only by Jesus can we get eternal life. Believe in Him, and let His light shine through you to reach and save our fallen world.

VerseD: Galatians 6:10

So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.
Galatians 6:10, ESV

We take care of our own. Interestingly, if we live or Christ’s love, we will probably pass it on to our lost, hurting world, so that they then will see our good works and praise our Father in heaven. (Matthew 5:16)

VerseD: Matthew 6:19

“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal”
Matthew 6:19, ESV

It is okay to have money and possessions, but our main focus and desire should be for heavenly things: the Lord’s righteousness, God’s glory, souls won through the Gospel.

VerseD: 3 John 1:11

Beloved, do not imitate evil but imitate good. Whoever does good is from God; whoever does evil has not seen God.
3 John 1:11, ESV

We are not to copy the world. We are separate, different, called to better.

Be radical. Love everyone. Do good for all people, in Christ’s name.

VerseD: Daniel 12:3

And those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the sky above; and those who turn many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever.
Daniel 12:3, ESV

Because of Christ’s good work, we now can be like a city on a hill, letting our good works shine brightly to the glory of the Father.

VerseD: Jeremiah 31:3

the Lord appeared to him from far away. I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore, I have continued to extend faithful love to you.
Jeremiah 31:3, CSB

Though we all stray from God, He calls out in love to come home. Today, He uses the Church, by the power of the Holy Spirit, to call to this fallen world.

Be His voice.