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Verse 13

Matthew 5:13. Ye Not the apostles, not ministers only; but all who possess and manifest the graces spoken of in the preceding verses, and are truly holy and righteous; are the salt of the earth Appointed to be the means of preventing or curing the growth of that corruption which prevails in the world, and of seasoning men’s minds with wisdom and grace. But if the salt have lost its savour Or, be grown insipid, and therefore want seasoning itself, wherewith shall it be salted By what means can its lost virtue be restored? The word μωρανθη , rendered have lost its savour, has peculiar strength and beauty, and is literally, be infatuated, or, grown foolish, “alluding,” says Dr. Doddridge, “to the common figure, in which sense and spirit are expressed by salt.” It is thenceforth good for nothing It is wholly useless, and left to be thrown out of doors, and trampled on by men as the common dirt in the streets: “thus worthless and contemptible will you, my disciples, be, even in the most eminent stations, if you lose your character for real and vital religion.” The following passage of Mr. Maundrell, quoted by Dr. Macknight, illustrates our Lord’s supposition of salt’s losing its savour. In the valley of Salt, near Gebul, and about four hours’ journey from Aleppo, there is a small precipice, occasioned by the continual taking away of the salt. “In this,” says he, “you may see how the veins of it lie; I brake a piece off it, of which the part that was exposed to the rain, sun, and air, though it had the sparks and particles of salt, yet it had perfectly lost its savour. The innermost part, which had been connected to the rock, retained its savour, as I found by proof.”

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