By Leonard Lauriault
Religion columnist 

Stay seasoned with the salt of Christ


September 28, 2022

My wife and I discussed reducing sodium in our diets. While humans need sodium for good health, we usually get more than we need, and too much of even any good thing is not good, except when it comes to God.

Anyway, using a salt substitute or light salt was broached and hastily dismissed. I’d never used either product, but my wife and her parents had and quickly decided they had an unfavorable taste.

The conversation then took a different direction as my wife asked about Jesus’ statement regarding our major Christian responsibility to be salt and light in the world (Matthew 5:13-16). While we understand Jesus’ point, like many, we both wondered how salt can lose its saltiness.

Today’s table salt is highly refined and readily dissolves in water. But things were different during Bible times when the refining process was pretty much the same and rather simple for both sea salt and mined rock salt. After filtering, the liquid forms were allowed to evaporate in large, often earthen, basins leaving the good stuff, which included sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium salts of chloride and sulfate and some other minerals, but mostly sodium chloride. The proportion of components in the final product was about the same for sea and rock salts because both originated from the sea.

The good flavor of table salt comes from the sodium chloride, but since it’s the most highly soluble component compared to the other salts, it also disappears first by leaching if left in the basin too long during the rainy season, leaving the less-tasty stuff behind. That could be how salt can lose its saltiness, becoming good only for being trampled on as road material, but that’s speculation on my part.

While we don’t understand at all some things in the Bible, the critical parts are easily understandable by most people, and we’re expected to follow those (Deuteronomy 29:29; 2 Corinthians 12:1-5; 1 Corinthians 4:1-6; Ephesians 3:4-6; Philippians 2:12-16; 3:7-16; Luke 12:47-48).

Some mysteries will be revealed only when Jesus returns; meanwhile, our obedience demonstrates our faith in accepting God’s grace (1 John 3:1-3; 5:1-5, 13; Acts 19:1-5; 2:38-39; 5:32; Romans 6:3-5; 8:9-17; Ephesians 2:1-9; James 1:22-25; 2:17, 24, 26). If we follow what we understand from the Bible now, we’ll lose our saltiness as the light to the world and only be fit to be thrown out (Luke 6:46-49; 14:34-35; Matthew 25:11-46).

By the way, potassium chloride is mined in New Mexico for fertilizer because it’s good for the soil and plant growth. So, the salt mentioned in Luke 14:34 had degraded considerably becoming unfit even for fertilizer because mostly calcium and magnesium salts remained. These are the white alkali salts our local soils have.

Christians are to be seasoned with the salt of Christ (Colossians 4:2-6; 1 Corinthians 11:1). Don’t lose your saltiness by not following what you can easily understand from the Bible.

Leonard Lauriault is a member of the Church of Christ in Logan who writes about faith for the Quay County Sun. Contact him at [email protected].


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