Passage: Matthew 25
People aren’t listening to your words. They are watching your lifestyle. Your words will not bring anyone else to heaven; your example will.
The master in Matthew 25 gave his servants talents. The servants with 5 talents and the servant with 2 talents multiplied their talents and gave them back to the master. The servant with 1 talent buried that talent. When the master came, he told him a really good sounding story about what he thought and believed. But those were just words. He couldn’t talk himself out of judgment for his actions. The master judged by his actions, not his words.
You will not bring other people to the kingdom of God by words alone. You must live your words. You must live according to the Word of God.
Jesus expects us to bear fruit in our lifestyles, in our examples. Do you bring change to other people’s lives? Are you a good example to other people? What is your fruit? That is what Jesus is looking for. He is not looking at your words, but your example.
If your lifestyle is not lined up with the Word of God, you won’t bear fruit. If you are filled with bad water, you won’t bear fruit.
God wants us to season ourselves.
13 And every offering of your grain offering you shall season with salt; you shall not allow the salt of the covenant of your God to be lacking from your grain offering. With all your offerings you shall offer salt.
“All your offerings” – everything about you. Season yourself with salt. What is salt? The Word of God. Jesus is salt; He is the Word. Season and purify your heart with the Word.
The Bible commands us to bring ourselves to God as a living sacrifice. We must give ourselves as a sacrifice for others. The leaders of the church should sacrifice themselves for the congregation. We must sacrifice ourselves for new believers. Jesus sacrificed Himself and brought salvation to this world.
Why salt? Salt is everlasting; it never spoils. What does salt do? Kill germs. Preserve meat. Salt melts itself in order to give flavor and kill germs and preserve food.
We need to follow the example of Jesus. We must season our lives. We must give ourselves as a sacrifice. Season every offering you give to God. Put the Word into every offering.
We need to use the Word of God to help other people. But we need to live the Word of God, not just speak the Word of God. It’s important to use your talents to bear fruit for the kingdom of God. The servant with one talent gave a good speech, but his speech didn’t save him.
2 Kings 2:19-22
19 Then the men of the city said to Elisha, “Please notice, the situation of this city is pleasant, as my lord sees; but the water is bad, and the ground barren.”
20 And he said, “Bring me a new bowl, and put salt in it.” So they brought it to him. 21 Then he went out to the source of the water, and cast in the salt there, and said, “Thus says the Lord: ‘I have healed this water; from it there shall be no more death or barrenness.’” 22 So the water remains healed to this day, according to the word of Elisha which he spoke.
Elisha used salt to heal the waters. He used the Word of God. He learned from his master, Elijah. Elijah fought a great battle against the King of Israel and Jezebel. Jezebel was a wicked and evil woman who used words to manipulate the people of Israel to worship false gods. Elijah gave a prophecy that God would close the windows of heaven and they would go through a long time of drought. Even thought this happened, the people didn’t change; they continued to worship false gods. Elijah called all Israel, including 850 false prophets together and called on God to show His power against them. (1 Kings 18)
After this, Elijah opened a prophet’s school, to raise up servants of the Lord. He felt like there was no one in Israel who served the Lord so he wanted to raise people up to serve Him. Elisha was a part of this school. He learned about salt from Elijah.
After Elijah went to heaven, the people came to Elisha for help. They lived in a beautiful place, but the water is bad. We can learn from this. There are many beautiful cities that are filled with sin. Bad water is sin. Poisonous thoughts. Ungodly desires. So, even though the city is beautiful, it is poisonous to Christians. Christians who live in these cities must guard against compromise and sin.
Elisha was steadfast for the truth. He was uncompromising and bold. He was fearless. But Israel was full of compromising “Christians” – compromising servants of the Lord who served God and also served Baal.
How can we bring change to these cities? Sprinkle salt. By the Word of God. By our lifestyles, living out the Word of God.
15 “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. 16 You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? 17 Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 Therefore by their fruits you will know them.
21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’
24 “Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock:
Many people talk about the things they’ve done or the churches they’ve attended or the positions they’ve held. They talk about their works. But Jesus is asking, “Where is your fruit?” Jesus will judge by your fruit, not the church you attend or the position you held.
People think that because they are a pastor or evangelist or because they attend church every week and help the poor that they are OK. But what do you do after church? What do you do when you aren’t helping the poor? Are you living according to the Word of God? Do you have anger, bitterness, lust, perversion, stinginess, or unforgiveness in your heart?
What kind of water do you have in your heart? Is your water dirty or clean? Have you been seasoning your heart?
When your Master returns, what fruit will you have to show Him? Will you have a really good explanation for Him or will you be able to show Him your fruit? Jesus will not accept your explanation for not bearing fruit.
God bless you,
Pastor Sun East