The Sermon on the Mount #12


“Ye Are The Light Of The World”

Matthew 5:14-16


A. When we moved past the beatitudes, we immediately
saw that Jesus began to challenge people’s concept of

1. “Ye are the salt of earth”

a. Salt is a preservative, an antiseptic, and seasoning

b. It is important to see that Jesus implies a tremendous
contrast between God’s people as salt and the world
which is sick, decaying and bland

2. Salt works because it is different from that to which it is

B. Today we come to another of the Lord’s challenging

1. Matthew 5:14-16

2. What did the average member of Jesus’ audience think
when he said that. Was it:

a. “Oh, sure, I knew that!”

b. “Who, me?”

c. “What is this guy talking about?”

3. Whatever it was, I believe it was surprise, wonder, and
probably at least a bit of amazement

C. Let’s look at this idea that God’s people are the light of the

1. Before the rest of the sermon makes much sense, you must
understand Jesus’ view of God’s people

2. Unless you see yourself and others as Jesus sees, what He
says about the life of faith is hard to understand



1. Just as in His statement about salt, Jesus implies
something about the world – it is in darkness

2. Darkness describes the condition of the world

a. Luke 1:79

b. John 1:5

c. John 3:19

d. Acts 26:17-18

e. Romans 13:12

f. Ephesians 6:12

3. Darkness describes that which Jesus came to overcome

a. John 8:12

b. John 12:35-36

c. John 12:46

d. 2 Corinthians 4:6

e. Colossians 1:13

f. 1 Thessalonians 5:5

4. Even more explicitly, the apostle Paul explains how this
darkness affects man

a. Ephesians 4:17-19

b. It is the mind of man that is darkened and thus produces
a dark world

1) Man hardens his heart against God

2) He chooses his own way and thus becomes ignorant of
God and of God’s way of living

3) Eventually he becomes past feeling and when that
happens his life is completely dominated by sin

c. That was the condition of the world when Jesus came
and it is the condition of the world even today


1. It is God’s people as a source of hope to a dark world that
Jesus had in mind with this statement

2. Consider what light does

a. Light eliminates darkness

1) Enter a dark room and turn on the light – notice what

2) It doesn’t even take a strong light

b. Light exposes the darkness and that which darkness

1) Ephesians 5:13

2) John 3:20

c. Light exposes the cause of the darkness – evil

1) When we shine as a light evil will be exposed – and
will be see for what it truly is

2) Evil flees from the light by:

a) Disregarding it

b) Speaking evil of it – saying it is unloving, etc.

d. Light shows the way out of darkness

1) One in sin needs someone to turn on the light

2) One in sin needs someone to point them in the right

3. We function as light when the words and actions of our
lives show forth the light of God

a. Two statements demonstrate that light is intended to

1) You can’t hide a city set on a hill – because in the
darkness of night, you can see the lights a long way

2) No one lights a lamp then covers it up – instead you
set it where it can do its best work

b. If we are to be the light of the world, two things must

1) Our own lives must be illuminated by God’s light –
Jesus Christ

2) We must live as people who are in the light of God

3) Ephesians 5:8

4) 1 John 1:7

4. Light can only do one thing – shine

a. Matthew 5:16

b. Note that the purpose of shining as lights is

1) So that others will see your good works

2) So that others will glorify God

3) The intent seems to be that those others will also
receive the light and become lights themselves


A. The challenge Jesus presents with this statement is great
because it summarizes all that God is and is doing in the

1. 1 John 1:5

2. John 8:12

3. Matthew 5:14

B. You are the light of the world

1. Philippians 2:14-15

2. Will we accept the challenge of being a light in the


About from the Preachers PC

Gospel Preacher for the Park Heights church of Christ in Hamilton, TX. I stand for and defend the truth of God's word. All other degrees and diplomas mean very little in comparison.
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