The Kingdom of Heaven: Light in the Darkness

“You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it be seasoned? It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men.

“You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.”

(Matt. 5:13-16)

This passage comes right on the heels of “Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you.”

I don’t think that’s a coincidence.

It’s often easy for us – especially if we’ve grown up in the church and are already familiar with a passage, to accept the separations of chapters and verses and miss the broader context and flow of meaning. But Jesus’ sermon wasn’t a random hodge-podge of various topics.

So why did He go from a discourse on the blessings of persecution to suddenly talking metaphors of light and dark? Continue reading

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1 Samuel 18: Let Your Light Shine

saulthrowsspearatdavid

As I was reading 1 Samuel 18, it struck me that there were a lot of repeated words and phrases in this chapter – and anyone who has done an in-depth Bible study knows that these repetitions often hold key themes and ideas.

So here’s a list of some of these repetitive elements: Continue reading