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Salt and Light

Briefing: As I read these verses, I see a large neon sign that says, “This applies to law enforcement officers on the job as well!” As you read it, see if you get the same application.

Dispatch (Assignment): Read Matthew 5:13-16 and think about your calling as a police officer. Are you a light in your world?

On the Street: Did you know that salt was used to pack meat before the advent of refrigeration? People used salt as a preservative. They would pack meat in salt to keep it from rotting. We are called to be the substance in this world that keeps it from rotting. That sounds like something very specific to law enforcement.

Jesus takes it a step further and says, “You are the light of the world”. I love this statement and the implications it has for law enforcement. Bad guys love the dark. They can hide in the shadows. As a child, I knew that monsters only came out at night. As a twenty year police officer, I am more convinced than ever that monsters come out at night. Besides guns, what piece of equipment do police spend the most money on? Answer: Flashlights. Why? Answer: to expose darkness.

We are to be the reflection of Christ’s light. We need to be the kind of Christian cops that light the path to officers who are lost and in the dark.

You are called to be salt and light. This calling is so much more than just being a good cop with integrity. You were called to lead your fellow brothers and sisters, in law enforcement, to Christ. I can’t think of a better way to sum this up than what Jesus said, “let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” AMEN!

Highlights from this Read: In verse thirteen, Jesus starts by saying, “You”. Do you have any doubt that He was talking directly to us? I can almost see Him looking at me; kneeling down like a father who is about to teach his young son how to catch a baseball. You can see the look of excitement and expectation in His eyes. “You have greatness in you, I can see it”, He explains.

Salt is different from the foods it is added to for flavor. When a Christian stops being different from the world and no longer works against the forces of decay, that person stops being salt to the earth. Such a Christian will have no positive influence in the world. It is the same for a LEO. You, LEO, are the thin blue line between chaos and civility, but if a LEO loses his/her integrity, how can they be trusted again? They are no longer good for keeping the peace. They have crossed to the other side of the thin blue line and have become the enemy.

Investigational Resources: We read in Leviticus 2:13 how we are to add salt to all of our offerings. If you read John chapter one you will see that Jesus is the true light.

Officer Safety Principle: You have a calling to be salt and light to those around you. The consequences of losing your saltiness are not good.

from The Gospel of Matthew Through the Eyes of a Cop
©by Charles Gilliland. Used by permission.
Click here to check out the entire Through the Eyes of a Cop series!