From Your Pastor

From Dr. Eric Hankins, Senior Pastor

I am in the middle of a great little book on the history of salt by Mark Kurlansky. Now, some might assume that such a book would be dreadfully boring, but that is hardly the case. For most of recorded history, salt has been a significant feature of the wealth of nations. Until about a hundred years ago, it was very difficult to come by and essentially the only means for preserving food. Therefore, it was incredibly valuable. Roman soldiers were often paid in salt (hence, the word “salary” and the idiom “worth his salt”). Entire economies revolved around the acquisition and trade of salt, wars have fought, cities built, and industries created all for this little crystal. Why? Because salt is life-giving. It is critical to the proper functioning of cells, yet is not produced by the human body. Salt added years to the lifespan of humans by making protein much more readily available because meat and dairy products could finally be preserved and transported. And finally, salt brought the taste of food to life, making meals into a joyous art form rather than a dull duty of nourishment alone. That is why Jesus, when introducing the concept of the kingdom of God in the Sermon on the Mount, chose the metaphor of salt to describe kingdom people: “You are the salt of the earth.” Jesus knew of the world-wide need for salt. He understood the way it gave life to the world. He also knew how easily it could be corrupted, and how worthless it was when that happened. When moisture and impurities crept in, a substance might still have the appearance of salt, but none of the power. There’s another word for unsalty salt: dirt. So, as kingdom people today, sprinkled throughout the world, let us be always about the task of bringing spiritual life, health, and flavor to the world. It can’t be found anywhere else.
Pastor Eric

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First Baptist Church - Fairhope
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Fairhope, AL, 36532
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