But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place. For we are a fragrance of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing; to the one an aroma from death to death, to the other an aroma from life to life... II Cor 2.14-16
… But you stink good, “a sweet aroma”! (had you going there for a minute, didn’t I)
We are the fragrance of Christ: it is another way to describe our influence or touch or presence in the world.
I always think of elk hunters when I read this passage. If you have ever gone hunting for elk or know someone who has, you know that elk are pretty wily prey. In order to have success in bagging that trophy bull a hunter has to make some preparations.
See, the problem is, he smells to, how can I say this… human. And to the sensitive nose of an elk, he smells like death. In addition, he looks out of place in the great outdoors.
The serious elk hunter will go to extreme measures in order to counter this aroma of death.
For starters they will not bathe with soap, shampoo or any other scented cleaning products; this will make them smell, well …“gamey”.
He will wear camouflaged clothing; will sometimes paint his face to camouflage it as well and will stick branches in his hat or leaves or whatever, anything that will help.
To top it off, some of them even apply scent that makes them smell like, well, lets just say, disgusting. Ha!
All this is done to make them blend in with hopes of bagging the big one.
Unfortunately at times we do the same thing. Not wanting to stick out, to be offensive, we will try our best to blend in, sometimes going to great lengths to do so, even if it means we get a little “gamey”.
The Bible teaches that WE ARE light, WE ARE salt, WE ARE the aroma of Christ; what that means is that unless I intentionally try to conceal my new life in Christ I will by default illuminate, I will flavor, I will have the fragrance of Christ.
But in Matthew Jesus tells us:
Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven. Matthew 5.16
Did you notice He didn’t say make your light shine, just let it shine. Don’t hide it.
Perhaps for some of us it is time to wipe of the face paint and put of the clothing (Col 3.9-10), Take a cleansing shower in the water of the Word and go stand “on a hill”.
This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine –
Let it shine
Let it shine