The Salt of the Earth

Inspiration MinistriesBy Inspiration Ministries2 Minutes

A quiet man who never desired the limelight, John Calvin nevertheless caused shockwaves. Although he described himself as just a “poor timid scholar,” he changed the course of nations.

Born on this day in 1509 in Noyon, France, Calvin was a serious student whose life was changed after grappling with ideas taught by Martin Luther. His eyes were opened to a vital faith and the power of God’s Word. After receiving a law degree, Calvin was forced to flee from France when church officials opposed his beliefs. In exile, he focused on Bible study and wrote commentaries.

In 1536, Calvin arrived in Geneva, Switzerland, intending to visit for just one day. But he decided to stay when he was invited to help organize the city’s reform-oriented government. Some resisted his ideas and, after two years, he was asked to leave. However, after spending three years in Strasbourg, Calvin was asked to return to Geneva and remained there until his death.

Based on his study of the Bible, Calvin believed that God is sovereign over every part of life, and Christians therefore have an obligation to become involved in their country. These ideas inspired Christians throughout Europe and later helped shape the foundation of the United States. As author David Holmes reports, “Over 80 percent of American Christians in the colonial period…were significantly influenced by John Calvin’s teachings.”

Today, many Christians see problems in the world, but don’t want to get involved. Calvin would remind us that we serve Almighty God and are called to be the salt of the earth. Make sure that you take seriously your God-given responsibilities. Pray for your country and its leaders. Vote. And, as God leads you, get involved. Don’t be silent!