Gospel of Matthew 5:13-16 Reflection:
Today when we rejoin the readings for ordinary time, we come in at the Sermon on the Mount. It is a bit like turning on the TV in the middle of a programme and having to figure out where the story is at. We have missed the beatitudes and the first few verses of the sermon but we are still in time for the really meaty part.
Some people refer to the Sermon on the Mount as the written constitution of the Kingdom of God and in this reading we are told what kind of people those who belong to the kingdom are supposed to be.
We are to be salt to the earth and a light to the world. The Christian is supposed to stand out as someone who lives in such a way as they stand out from the rest of the community. We are not to live by the world’s standards and are to point to higher and more important realities.
While the world constantly wants more of everything, the Christian lives content with less and happy to embrace an attitude that enough is enough.
While the world looks up to people who are a material success, the Christian looks to the heart of the other and sees the reality of what lies beneath, a sinner who is in need of salvation. The world will constantly insist that we are our own masters.
We, as followers of Christ, are to bear witness that the world is not our final home. In a way we are to be adverts for God. Freedom is not the ability to do what we want but the ability to do what is right, true and honourable without something coming in the way.
That actually is quite a responsibility!