Devotional for March 23, 2020
Everyone will be salted with fire. “Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can you make it salty again? Have salt among yourselves and be at peace with each other.” Mark 9:49-50
In this section of Mark, Jesus is teaching about discipleship, and what it means to be one of His disciples. Beginning in the 38th verse, we read of John stopping a man who was casting out demons in Jesus’ Name, “. . . because he was not one of us.” John wanted to maintain distance, separation, and a wall between the disciples and those who were not one of them. This almost seems like social distancing, but for another reason other than for the preservation of our health. John wanted social distancing to keep the outsiders away from the insiders.
All who have ever lived have dealt with pain, suffering, natural disasters, and tragedy. Each of these have a way of destroying the walls and barriers which separate us from one another. The worldwide coronavirus pandemic cares nothing about boundaries of countries, states, neighborhoods, and socio-economic separators. So, when Jesus says, “Everyone will be salted with fire,” He means we all will go through things and we will go through them alone and together, but all will go through them. The barriers will be broken down.
He then says, “Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can you make it salty again?” One of the distinctive marks of discipleship, typified by salt, is allegiance to Jesus and the gospel. If we have no allegiance to Jesus and his teaching, we lose our saltiness. He then He says, “Have salt in yourselves.” Stay committed to me and my teaching and in doing so, you will be at peace with each other.
I believe, as disciples of Christ, we should not need a tragedy, suffering, or a natural disaster to bring us into peace with each other. Being at peace with each other is a mark of being one of Christ’s disciples.
May all the things that separate us disappear and may we as disciples of Christ be led by Him into being at peace.
Please double click on the MP3 file of He Leadeth Me. And pray the lyrics of this hymn as Allen Baston plays.
He Leadeth Me
He leadeth me: O blessed thought! O words with heavenly comfort fraught!
Whate’er I do, where’er I be, Still ’tis God’s hand that leadeth me.
Refrain: He leadeth me, he leadeth me, By his own hand he leadeth me.
His faithful follower I would be, For by his hand he leadeth me.
Sometimes mid scenes of deepest gloom, Sometimes where Eden’s bowers bloom,
By waters still, o’er troubled sea, Still ’tis his hand that leadeth me. (Refrain)
Lord, I would place thine hand in mine, Nor ever murmur nor repine;
Content, whatever lot I see, Since ’tis thine hand that leadeth me. (Refrain)
And when my task on earth is done, When by thy grace the victory’s won,
E’en death’s cold wave I will not flee, Since God through Jordan leadeth me. (Refrain)
Let us pray. Dear Lord as we go through this testing by fire, help us to have a heart to be in peace with each other, not just now, but always. Amen