Posts Tagged ‘ Bible study ’

Sermon on the Mount study notes: Matthew 7:1-6

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. [Reminder that these are only notes!]

Sermon on the Mount – Part 12

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.

What was discussed last time?

• Don’t worry.
• Trust God.

Matthew 7:1:
Cut and dry, right? Don’t judge.

  • Jesus always takes us deeper.

Matthew 7:2-4:
DISCUSS!

  • Not just “don’t be a hypocrite.”
  • Getting stuck on others’ sins:
    • We are at least as guilty of that sin
    • We are unaware of our particular sin
    • We are covering for our own sin
    • We are avoiding our own sin
    • We are seeking power over others
      • See also: Cult leaders
  • When we judge others, we invite the same judgment. (Be ready: 1 Peter 3:13-17)

Matthew 7:5-6:
Not hypocrisy, but helping from experience.

  • v. 5: We are to judge rightly – discernment.
    • As revealed from God’s Word:
      • 2 Timothy 3:16-17
      • Hebrews 4:12-13
      • They are judged by God as revealed in Scripture (The Way of the Master – Ray Comfort)
    • As demonstrated by Paul:
      • Ephesians 3:7-13
      • 1 Corinthians 15:9-11
  • v. 6: What?!
    • What do dogs do with things?
      • “Ooh! Toy/Substitute for an animal!”
        • Tear it to shreds (make excuses, shift the blame: see legalistic Christians … and most others)
        • Make a bed out of it (become more hypocritical through claiming better righteousness: see Critical Race Theory)
        • Get it a slobbery, fecal mess (like shredding and bedding, but distorting the meaning: see liberal Christianity)
    • What do pigs do with things?
      • Live in a sty.
        • Roll in/on it (Try to discredit it while appearing to be better: see many atheists or NAR/Prosperity Preachers)
        • Eat literally everything (claim all truths are equal, except conservative Christianity: see New Age and Postmodernism)
    • Proverbs 26:11; 2 Peter 2
    • Mark 6:10-11

We are to judge with God’s standard (The Bible – literally “canon” = “standard” or “ruler”): we start with ourselves, then we help the world. (Matthew 28:18-20)

Sermon on the Mount study notes: Matthew 6:25-34

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. [Reminder that these are only notes!]

Sermon on the Mount – Part 11

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.

What was discussed last time?

  • Where we store our riches
  • Inner darkness vs. light
    • Is our focus on the Kingdom or ourselves?
    • Are we listening to/teaching selfish, worldly teachings?
  • We can’t serve two masters.

Matthew 6:25:
“Therefore …”: Jesus has been leading to a point in this chapter:

  • We give to those in need
  • We fast and pray
  • We do it all to focus on God and His Kingdom

Since we are focusing on God:

  • Why should we worry?
    • Food
    • Water
    • Clothes

Matthew 6:26-32:
We get a mini-lesson on why not to worry:

  • Birds of the air
    • Psalm 147:9 (see vv. 7-11)
    • Job 38:41
  • Solomon and flowers
  • If these can be clothed so beautifully, yet …
    • Isaiah 40:8, 61:10-11
      • We are reminded that nothing in this world lasts, so we should trust what God says.
      • 2 Peter 3:9-13
      • This all reminds us that such as the Prosperity Gospel is false

Matthew 6: 33-34:
We get the reminder that we trust God alone. And what does that look like?

  • Philippians 4:4-7
  • 1 Peter 5:5-11

Sermon on the Mount study notes – Matthew 6:19-24

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. [Reminder that these are only notes!]

Sermon on the Mount – Part 10

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.

What was discussed last time?
• Giving to the needy
• Love your neighbor as yourself
o We are serving Christ when we serve others.

Matthew 6:19-21:
But isn’t wealth a sign of blessing?

  • As usual, what is our focus?
  • 1 Timothy 6:1-10
    • Why vv. 1-2?
      • Be good servants – good employees!
      • Be good masters – good managers!
      • Don’t just focus on the money of work, rather doing the best work (as for the Lord – Colossians 3:23)
    • False teachers focus on money and lustful, covetous, earthly desires.
    • It is the love of money that leads to so many problems.

Matthew 6:22-24:
What is Jesus saying?

  • How do we view the world and Scripture?
    • With Holy Spirit-eyes or worldly eyes?
  • Mark 7:14-23
    • The darkness comes from our sinful desires

What does it look like to serve two masters?

  • Matthew 12:22-32,43-45
    • How many teachers, preachers, prophets(?), apostles(?) claim to be casting out demons and performing healings in the name of Jesus without the full gospel or for money?
    • Many of these people say it is demanded we speak in tongues and heal, and even claim to be super-apostles, all while claiming to regularly visit heaven and speak with angels as they bind and rebuke demons.
      • 2 Corinthians 11:1-15
  • 2 Peter 2:17-22 (paraphrase vv.10-16)

Jesus always takes us deeper.

  • It’s not just about money and budgeting and not merely seeking money as an idol.
  • Beware the false teachers and false christs (anointed ones) who only want your money – or being one of those yourself!

Sermon on the Mount study notes – Matthew 6:5-18

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. [Reminder that these are only notes!]

Sermon on the Mount – Part 10

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.

What was discussed last time?
• Giving to the needy
• Love your neighbor as yourself
o We are serving Christ when we serve others.

Matthew 6:1:
“Beware of practicing your righteousness before other people …”
• Jesus is continuing from this point: why do we fast and pray?

What does Jesus repeat throughout the first half of ch. 6?

“They have received their reward … And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.”

Matthew 6:5,16:
Fasting and Praying:

  • Why do we fast and pray? (Surface-level, observation of people)
    • Because we are supposed to.
    • Because we want something.
      • From God, and this is how we make God see we’re serious
      • From people, and this is how we show them we are holy and serious
  • Why should we fast? (Real, biblical reasons)
    • Prepare
      • Ministry
      • Event/Life-change
    • Seek
      • Wisdom
      • Deliverance (spiritual attack, for loved ones)
      • Victory (over sin, circumstances)
    • Repent
      • Personal sins
      • Corporate sins
        • Family
        • Congregation
        • Community
        • Region
        • Nation – World
    • Grief/Healing
    • Worship

Matthew 6:6,17-18:
Do we only pray private prayers or only fast secretly?

  • No, because what about all of the calls to public, corporate prayer/fasting?
  • It is a matter of the heart: why are we doing it? For show, or to seek God?

Matthew 6:7-8:
Think of what Jesus means (Compare 2 Corinthians 10:5):

  • Pagan meditation:
    • Clearing mind of all thought
    • Focused on a desire (i.e. The Secret)
  • Pagan prayers:
    • Some are “okay”, sure, but Jesus is speaking to the prayers of mindlessly speaking or repeating a specific prayer or chant over and over in the hopes that a god will hear.
      • Stream-of-consciousness
  • Not bad in and of itself, but unfocused and unthinking.
  • The matter of “speaking in tongues” (1 Corinthians 14)
    • Tongues is supposed to be “for the unbeliever” as a sign
      • Repeating a word or phrase repeatedly.

So, what about The Lord’s Prayer?

Matthew 6:9-13:
Seems repetitive to say every day/week:

  • Is this a command to pray this way:
    • Not exactly: Jesus says “Pray in this manner” and not necessarily “Pray these words.”
    • It’s not bad to repeat a good prayer!
  • What is Jesus saying?
    • Compare Luke 11:1-4 (11:5-13 shows up in Matthew 7:7-11)
      • Jesus was specifically asked how to pray (not what to pray)
    • How do we pray?
      • Worship God (hallowed, or holy, be Your name)
        • Do we live in such a way that shows God’s holiness?
      • Help us live out God’s will (Your Kingdom come …)
        • Are we fulfilling the Great Commission?
      • Meet our needs (Give us this day …)
        • Are we trusting in His sovereignty, grace, and mercy?
      • Repentance (forgive us …)
        • We mess up, but also remember one of the reasons for fasting: praying for our lost loved ones
      • Help (lead us not …)
        • To get through each day but also in emergencies
    • Notice these are not numbered nor too specific!
    • If we know the reasoning, it is not bad to recite the prayer. It can help focus us on Christ.
    • It is not a thing to be done as penance/punishment (Yes, this is a jab at the Catholic Church)

Matthew 6:14-15:
Again, focused on our hearts/minds:

  • If we hold grudges, are we showing we don’t understand forgiveness?
    • Malice and hatred are the antithesis of grace and mercy
    • We might not actually be saved.
  • Have you forgiven yourself?
    • This is not to say “If you can’t forgive yourself, God won’t either.”
    • In spite of our sinfulness He saved us!
    • We might not actually be saved if we get too hung up on our sinfulness.
    • Believing we are unforgivable implies God can’t save us (blasphemy of the Holy Spirit)

Fasting and Prayer is to help us communicate with God, to change us.

“Prayer is for us, not God. He knows what we need, and we need Him.”

Sermon on the Mount study notes – Matthew 6:1-4

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. [Reminder that these are only notes!]

Sermon on the Mount – Part 9

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.

What was discussed last time?

  • Retaliation
  • Love your enemies
    • “Would you give the Antichrist food and water …?”

Matthew 6:1:
Beware practicing where other people can see? What about “let your light shine that they may see”
(5:16)?

Matthew 6:2-4:
What is Jesus saying?
Beware by making sure your motives are right. Are you seeking glory and people liking you, or are you actually loving others?

  • Compare (“Said of old”):
    • Proverbs 11:24-25 (gives and gets, is refreshed)
    • Proverbs 22:9, 16 (oppresses poor, gives to rich)
    • Proverbs 25:14 (boast of non-gift)
    • Proverbs 28:27 (who gives will not want, hides eyes is cursed)
  • First thing to remember:
    • Proverbs 29:13 – We are all created by God (Made in His image; God gives sight to both)
    • Proverbs 19:17 – We work to serve the Lord (He is kind to the poor in spirit, rewarded by Lord)
      • Love God, love others
  • We are reminded and admonished:
    • Proverbs 3:27-28 – 1 John 3:16-18 – James 2:14-17(, 18-26) (have but don’t give, wicked – faith without works is dead)
      • Ephesians 2:8-9 – Does Paul contradict James?
      • No! Paul explains we are not saved by works, James explains our salvation pushes us to good works. In fact:
  • Philippians 2:12-13
    • Matthew 25:31-46

Sermon on the Mount study notes – Matthew 5:38-48

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. [Reminder that these are only notes!]

Sermon on the Mount – Part 8

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.

What was discussed last time?

  • Making oaths – lying, cursing, doing things for God
  • What was one oath we discussed?
    • “I swear, if you …”

Matthew 5:38:

What is Jesus saying?

  • Once again (as seen in earlier passages), “an archaic saying”
    • Said of old means: The Old Testament, specifically the Torah, more specifically Exodus 21:23-25; Leviticus 24:19-20; Deuteronomy 19:21
  • Retribution by Law: The same price of what was taken

Matthew 5:39-42:

What is Jesus saying?
Did Jesus abolish this law?
[Not exactly, but He is also saying “Out-give, out-forgive, over-love others … especially when they mistreat you!”]

  • So, we have to take abuse?
    • Sometimes, yes! [5:10-12]
    • Sometimes, no. Acts 16:16-39 (as well as Acts 21-22)
  • Rely on the Holy Spirit
    • It is not always easy. When in doubt, the sake of the Gospel is more important than our rights.
  • “But it might mean …!” Yep. It might.
    • We might be disadvantaged, mistreated, abused, arrested, maligned, disavowed
    • 2 Corinthians 4:7-11; Romans 5:2-6; James 1:2-8
  • Consider the example of an ancient saint dealing with an ancient antichrist:
    • A ruler who:
      • destroyed the Temple
      • commanded people to worship him and his statue
      • killed people who disobeyed and refused to worship
    • Daniel, who faithfully served such a tyrant (and series of tyrants, Nebuchadnezzar and two more after), yet even when punished was still loved by his rulers.

In fact …

Matthew 5:43-48: (Leviticus 19:18)

Notice what is Jesus saying in v. 43:
Did Jesus “you have read” or “it is written”?
NO! He said “You have heard that it was said ..” – This is an example of how people added to Scripture

  • We see Jesus saying that God shows His grace on all people (v. 45)
  • Are we better than the world? (vv. 46-47)
  • We are to love our enemies!
    • If you saw the Antichrist suffering or hungry, would you help him?
      Romans 12:14-21 (Proverbs 25:21-22)
  • Our example: v. 48 – Be perfect as our heavenly Father is perfect.
    • WHAT?!
    • “For God so loved the world …”
    • “Be completely mature, completely upright …”

Be completely satisfied in the Holy Spirit. As Jesus and the Father are one and united also with the Holy Spirit, we, too, can find our contentment in Him.

Sermon on the Mount study notes – Matthew 5:32-37

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. [Reminder that these are only notes!]

Sermon on the Mount – Part 8

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. (A focus on why we’re blessed from 5:3-11)

[Jesus always takes us deeper]

What is an oath?
What was discussed last time?
• Lust and Divorce
• What are the most important promises we make in this life?
o Faith in Christ
o Marriage

Matthew 5:33:
What is Jesus saying?
• Once again, “an archaic saying”
o Said of old means: The Old Testament, specifically the Torah, more specifically Leviticus 19:11-12
▪ Essentially a rehashing of the 10 Commandments, but deeper
• Is He saying “Don’t cuss”?
o No, but also a good idea. Look back at vv. 21-22 – words spoken in anger
▪ OMG
▪ “I swear [to God], if you …”
o It becomes an issue of “Lord’s name in vain” then, as well
• Based on Lev. 19, don’t drag God into your lying and false promises
But what else is He saying?

Matthew 5:34-37:
What is Jesus saying?
Did Jesus abolish this law?
[Not exactly, but He also says “Just do it. Say you will, and then do.”]
• In other words, do not make oaths:
o That drag God into your failures or make your deeds seem good (Matthew 12:22-32)
o Based on Creation
o Based on your own abilities – James 4:13-17
• James 5:12 – Jesus’ brother reiterates “Let your yes be yes and your no be no.
o Notice the context: James 5:7-16
▪ He reiterates that we will suffer for Christ.
▪ Don’t grumble/complain/get angry
• We remember Christ is coming soon
• Do we really believe Christ is coming soon (swear to God), or do people see us squabbling and
assume we doubt His return?
▪ Actually pray for people when you say you will! (This keeps coming up in these lessons)
▪ Confess sins
• Do we really believe God has forgiven us, or do people see us hold sins against each other and
assume we doubt His forgiveness?

Are all oaths/promises bad?

Not necessarily:

  • Intent matters:
    • Do you promise beyond ability? Then oaths and promises are stupid.
    • “As much as I can … if the Lord wills …”
  • It would rule out … covenants!
    • Remember: God swore by Himself with Abraham (Hebrews 6:13-14)
    • Covenants can be one-sided or two-sided (yes, sometimes more), but are commitments/promises between parties to fulfill obligations
  • Oaths/Promises can display sincerity (i.e. marriages, court trials, desperate pleas)

Sermon on the Mount study notes – Matthew 5:27-32

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. [Reminder that these are only notes!] (And I just realized I forgot to publish this earlier in the week!)

Sermon on the Mount – Part 7

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.

Can God see into our hearts and minds?
• 1 Samuel 16:7 – “For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but
the Lord looks on the heart.”
• Psalm 44:21 – Would not God discover this? For he knows the secrets of the heart.
• Proverbs 21:2 – Every way of a man is right in his own eyes, but the Lord weighs the heart.
• Jeremih 17:9-10 – “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can
understand it? I the Lord search the heart and test the mind, to give every man according to his
ways, according to the fruit of his deeds.”

Mormons believe God can’t see into human hearts.

What is that old, archaic word for wanting something badly (found in the 10 Commandments)?
Covet – What does this mean? [To want more than God, to desire to the harm of others]

Is it the same as lust? What is lust?
[e.g. disordered desire for someone or something, usually sexual in nature]

Matthew 5:27-28:

What is Jesus saying?
[Is it okay to look? “It’s not hurting anyone!”]

Matthew 5:29-30:

What is Jesus saying?
[“STOP IT!” It is severely serious how bad sin is.]
• Matthew 18:7-9 – Our own temptations can lead others into temptation
o Will we actually enter eternity mutilated and deformed? (Remember, Jesus has His scars!)

Matthew 5:31-32:

• Jesus refers to Deuteronomy 24:1-4
o Sometimes a woman was given a second dowry if she remarried.
▪ What is the abomination in God’s sight?
• Remember that brothers were to give their widowed sisters-in-law a child, so is it purely sexual?
• If there is a second dowry, the first husband may be taking her back just for the money.
• We see the seriousness of divorce.
o Matthew 19:1-9 (Genesis 2:24)
• Does this mean a divorcee can never remarry?
o Consider 1 Timothy 3:2
o What if it was before they became a Christian?
o Consider Israel through Hosea: Israel was His unfaithful wife. The Church is not a new wife, rather a
renewed wife, for Israel is still included. In fact, we have been grafted into Israel (Romans 11)

Sermon on the Mount study notes – Matthew 5:17-20

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 5

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 5:17-20

What is the Law?

  • The books of Moses, the Pentateuch, the Torah (Genesis-Deuteronomy)
  • Jewish leadership of Jesus’ day would have included the writings of teachers that expounded on and added to the Law.
  • The Prophets (the rest of the OT) were highly regarded, too, except by the Sadducees.

What is the purpose of the Law?
Romans 3:19-20 – points out our sin

What is antinomianism?
Anti = against, removed. Nomian (Deutero-nomy) = law. Therefore, against the Law or the Law
removed.
In other words and in a summation: antinomianism teaches that we are not under any part of the Law,
even the Moral Law (summarized as the 10 Commandments).
• Deuteronomy 6:1-2, 12:1 – Laws for the Promised Land

Matthew 5:17:
Pretty clearly says “not abolish but fulfill”:
• What does Jesus mean by fulfill?
o 1 Peter 2:22-25 – Perfectly obey and bring about what was prophesied.

Matthew 5:18:
• How do antinomians interpret this verse?
   o John 19:30 – They say He meant the Law is accomplished (after all, that entire passage speaks of how
His crucifixion fulfills Scripture, i.e. the Law and Prophets.)
• What is the better interpretation?
   o John 17:4 – accomplish the work the Father gave
   o Luke 19:10
• Also, “until heaven and earth pass away …” The Law stands until all of God’s plan is complete, i.e.
the renewal of all things.

Matthew 5:19:
• Relaxes one of the least of these commandments?
o Matthew 23:23-24
▪ The leaders stressed things like the tithe (meant for the Temple and priests, Numbers 18) but
showed a lack of compassion and justice and faithfulness to God’s intent.
• But we don’t obey all of those laws, right?
o Acts 15:22-29 – We an understand this as “do not worry about the Law for Israel, just obey the
Ten Commandments as has been revealed.”
o But what about the Sabbath?
▪ Hebrews 4:1-13
All other Commandments are repeated in the New Testament except the Sabbath (we await the full rest
of our souls and renewed bodies in eternity)

The tithe is also not expressly demanded in the NT. The tithe was supposed to supply the priests with food and necessary means for Temple operations and upkeep.

Matthew 5:20:
Jesus rarely said the Jewish leaders were flat out wrong about their teachings. They understood God’s
Word really well!
• Matthew 23 explains the 7 woes of Jesus against the Scribes and Pharisees
o Basically, they made themselves look good on the outside, but they were hypocrites.
• We are to work out of love of God and people: Romans 13:14; 2 Corinthians 5:14-17

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