“So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.” – Matthew 7:12
We all know about the golden rule. It has been a common knowledge for everyone the so called ‘golden rule’. We can hear people using this as their life statement in which they base how they treat others and how they expect others to treat them. Indeed that you should do to others what you want them to do with you. This is what all of the people call the golden rule.
Our verse today shows that this golden rule is indeed in the Bible. Jesus even mentioned this and has confirmed that it is indeed a great thing that we should only do to others what we expect them to do with us. However, some people misunderstood this teaching and have circled the whole message of the Bible in this particular statement. This is indeed a good teaching but this does not sum up the whole Gospel. We have to understand that this golden rule is only one of the great teachings but it is not the full revelation of the Bible.
We have to understand that Jesus particularly mentioned this to teach us the importance of loving others as ourselves. This golden rule will only be achieved through the motivation of love. Both respecting and loving should be the first step to achieve this. In some cases, people claim that they can just achieve this life principle without having to love that specific person. Indeed it is true but what Jesus wants us to do is that we should not just live our lives and revolve our principles to this golden rule, but He also wants us to understand the importance of loving one another.
Of course we can just respect others without loving them. We are a selfish kind of creatures. We respect because we expect to be respected too. We don’t do things if we can’t benefit from it. Thus, this is why the Bible is not embraced with that teaching only but that teaching encourages us to do more. The real summarization of the Bible revolves around Christ and what He did for all of us. The Gospel talks about God promised Jesus from the beginning of age, how He came to the world to save us from our sins and how He died for all of us.
The Gospel is all about how we are saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. We cannot be saved through our actions and thus by living according to that principle will not save us. However, Jesus still mentioned this for us to understand that He wants us to do to others what we want them to do to us. We wanted to be forgiven, so we must also forgive others. We want others to respect us, then we must also respect us. More importantly, Jesus wants us to do exactly more than just reciprocating what other people will show us, He wants us to love one another.
Even if others will not do it, He still wants us to do that because everything should be motivated by love. God loves us so much and that’s why He sent His Son to the world to save us. Jesus Christ loved us so much, that is why He personally came, humbled Himself and died on the cross for us. Therefore, as Christians who are already saved by grace through our faith in Christ which is also a gift, we are called to not just revolve our life principle to that golden rule, but we must exercise the real truth and message of the Gospel. We must not just reciprocate what other people are showing us but we must do more than that and exercise love to all.
Let us not forget that God has forgiven all our sins and has redeemed us from the bondage of sin and death because He loves us. We must then always remember to love one another and above all else, love God with all of our hearts, minds, strengths and souls. We should not forget that this golden rule is just a guide for us but we should not revolve our lives in this teaching but instead, we should choose to revolve our lives in the whole teaching of the Gospel.
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