What are the distinguishing marks of the Christian? Sikhs and religious Jews are recognized by their dress; Moslems, by their use of Peace be upon him when speaking of Mohammed. But how does one recognize a Christian? This verse gives a hint of the answer.
The Lord put a difference between the clean and the unclean animals. The clean animal was recognized by two marks: it parted the hoof, and it chewed the cud. In other words, the distinguishing marks concerned the foot and the mouth.
The Christian likewise should be instantly distinguished in society by his holy talk and his holy walk. Paul encouraged the Colossians to let their speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt (Col. 4:6). The Christians conversation should always be seasoned with the salt of grace. He should be Gods salt shaker, helping to season the language of the community.
The clean animal chewed the cud, suggesting to us that the believer is to digest and meditate on the Word of God as his daily food. With this Word in his heart, he will have holy conversation on his lips.
The clean animal parted the hoof. It had a peculiar walk; it was different from other animals. At one time the Christian walked according to the course of this world. Now, transformed by Gods grace, he is to walk in love, circumspectly, as a child of light.
Be warned that the Christian must pass both tests. To have only the talk is hypocrisy. To have the walk without the testimony is self-righteousness. Some people can talk like a saint, but inconsistent actions damage their testimony. Worse is the Christian with foot-and-mouth diseaseneither his lips nor his life is holy.
The believer who talks and walks right may not be the most popular fellow according to the world, but he will be blessed of God. Will you talk and walk for the Lord Jesus Christ today?