Luke 14:35
It is neither fit for the land, nor yet for the dunghill; but men cast it out. He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.
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(35) It is neither fit for the land, nor yet for the dunghill.—The illustration, differing as it does from that in Matthew 5:13 and Mark 9:50, proves the independence of the saying as here recorded. A new use of salt, distinct from that of preserving food, or its symbolic meaning in sacrifice, is brought before us, and becomes the ground-work of a new parable. The use is obviously a lower and humbler one than the others. The salt serves, mingling with the dung-hill, to manure and prepare the ground for the reception of the seed. Bear this in mind, and the interpretation of the parable, connected, as it thus is, with that of the Fig-tree (see Note on Luke 13:8), is obvious. A corrupt church cannot even exercise an influence for good over the secular life of the nation which it represents. The religious man whose religion has become an hypocrisy cannot even be a good citizen, or help others forward in the duties of their active life by teaching or example. The church and the individual man are alike fit only to be “cast out”—to become, i.e., a by-word and proverb of reproach. Our Lord’s sense, if we may so speak, of the depth and fulness of the meaning of His words, is shown by His emphatic reproduction of the words that had accompanied His first parable, “He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.”

14:25-35 Though the disciples of Christ are not all crucified, yet they all bear their cross, and must bear it in the way of duty. Jesus bids them count upon it, and then consider of it. Our Saviour explains this by two similitudes; the former showing that we must consider the expenses of our religion; the latter, that we must consider the perils of it. Sit down and count the cost; consider it will cost the mortifying of sin, even the most beloved lusts. The proudest and most daring sinner cannot stand against God, for who knows the power of his anger? It is our interest to seek peace with him, and we need not send to ask conditions of peace, they are offered to us, and are highly to our advantage. In some way a disciple of Christ will be put to the trial. May we seek to be disciples indeed, and be careful not to grow slack in our profession, or afraid of the cross; that we may be the good salt of the earth, to season those around us with the savour of Christ.See the Matthew 5:13 note; Mark 9:49-50 notes.

Salt is good - It is useful. It is good to preserve life and health, and to keep from putrefaction.

His savour - Its saltness. It becomes tasteless or insipid.

Be seasoned - Be salted again.

Fit for the land - Rather, it is not fit "for land," that is, it will not bear fruit of itself. You cannot sow or plant on it.

Nor for the dunghill - It is not good for manure. It will not enrich the land,

Cast it out - They throw it away as useless.

He that hath ears ... - See Matthew 11:15. You are to understand that he that has not grace in his heart; who merely makes a profession of religion, and who sustains the same relation to true piety that this insipid and useless mass does to good salt, is useless in the church, and will be rejected. "Real" piety, true religion, is of vast value in the world. It keeps it pure, and saves it from corruption, as salt does meat; but a mere "profession" of religion is fit for nothing. It does no good. It is a mere encumbrance, and all such professors are fit only to be cast out and rejected. All such "must" be rejected by the Son of God, and cast into a world of wretchedness and despair. Compare Matthew 7:22-23; Matthew 8:12; Matthew 23:30; Matthew 25:30; Revelation 3:16; Job 8:13; Job 36:13.

34, 35. Salt, &c.—(See on [1672]Mt 5:13-16; and Mr 9:50). See Poole on "Luke 14:34"

It is neither fit for the land,.... For the manuring of it, when it has lost its savour and spirit; otherwise it makes land fruitful, if too much is not used, and especially fixed salts have this use; though Pliny says (o),

"every place in which salt is found, it is barren and brings forth nothing.''

Nor yet for the dunghill; to mix with dung, and help it, that it may be the more serviceable for the earth; and just such useless things, are a mere external profession of religion, and professors of it, and ministers of the word, without the grace of God; they are of no use, but hurtful to the church, and to the world; these phrases are left out in the Persic and Ethiopic versions:

but men cast it out; into the streets, as entirely useless: and so such graceless professors and ministers, are to be cast out of the churches of Christ now, and will be excluded the kingdom of heaven hereafter:

he that hath ears to hear, let him hear; this being a point of great importance and consequence; See Gill on Matthew 11:15.

(o) Nat. Hist. l. 31. c. 7.

It is neither fit for the land, nor yet for the dunghill; but men cast it out. He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.
Luke 14:35. οὔτε εἰς γῆν οὔτε εἰς κοπρίαν, neither for land nor for dung (is it fit, εὔθετον as in Luke 9:62). The idea seems to be that savourless salt is neither earth nor manure.—ἔξω is emphatic = out they cast it, as worthless, good for nothing, mere refuse, a waste substance.

35. men cast it out] There is nothing stronger than salt which can restore to it its lost pungency. Hence, if it have been spoilt by rain or exposure, it is only fit to be used for paths. The peril of backsliding, the worthlessness of the state produced by apostasy, is represented in St John (Luke 15:6) by the cutting off and burning of the dead and withered branch. The main lesson of these three similitudes is expressed with its full force in Hebrews 6:4-12; Heb 10:26-39; and the importance of it is emphasized by the proverbial expression, “He that hath ears to hear,” &c. (Matthew 11:15; Deuteronomy 29:4; Isaiah 6:9-10).

Luke 14:35. Οὔτε, neither) That is to say, it brings with it neither immediate (direct) nor mediate (indirect) profit. The divine who is destitute of spiritual salt is not even politically profitable: Isaiah 9:14-15.—ἔξω, out) There is sternness here, even in the mode of expression.

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