how are we to adorn the teaching of the Christ by stating that others are serpents, off spring of vipers, or in simply repeating scriptural admonition that reads like a platitude, for it comes without explanation. If you are the 'salt of the earth', you must adorn your teaching, that is make it palatable to others, without watering down its content. Did not Paul write,
(Acts 17:22-23) . . .“Men of Athens, I behold that in all things you seem to be more given to the fear of the deities than others are. For instance, while passing along and carefully observing your objects of veneration I also found an altar on which had been inscribed ‘To an Unknown God. . .
Notice how he commends the Athenians for their godly devotion, even though they were engaged in idolatry! He then tries to find common ground and then espouse the truth of the Christ.
(1 Corinthians 9:19-23) . . .For, though I am free from all persons, I have made myself the slave to all, that I may gain the most persons. And so to the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain Jews; to those under law I became as under law, though I myself am not under law, that I might gain those under law. To those without law I became as without law, although I am not without law toward God but under law toward Christ, that I might gain those without law. To the weak I became weak, that I might gain the weak. I have become all things to people of all sorts, that I might by all means save some. But I do all things for the sake of the good news, that I may become a sharer of it with others.