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On the "Golden Rule"
by Wayne Childress
9/26/2013 / Christian Living
Do you think you know the "Golden Rule"? Did you know that there is no "golden rule" mentioned in the Bible? Well then, what, as taught by Christ Himself, is the most important "rule"? In Mark, He states:
And Jesus answered him, the first of all the commandments is Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is one Lord; and, you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. This is the first commandment.
Note that Jesus himself considers this so important that He reiterates its importance by beginning and ending with the fact that this is the "First Commandment"!
He then follows this immediately with:
And the second is like it, you shall love your neighbor as yourself. There is no other commandment greater than these.
In Matthew, He states:
Jesus said to him, you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it, you shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.
So why then do most people think the "Golden Rule" is "do unto others, as you would have them do unto you"? Well, Jesus did say:
Therefore, whatever you would that men should do to you, do even so to them. For this is the law and the prophets.
And as you would that men should do to you, do also to them.
It is obvious where Jesus' emphasis is when you compare how the same author quotes him, Matthew, in verses Mat 22:37/40 and Mat 7:12.
Furthermore, the only time a "royal law" is implied in the Bible it was by the disciple James:
If you fulfill the royal law according to the scripture, you shall love your neighbor as yourself, you do well.
At the time James said this there was no New Testament. When he referred to Scripture, he was referring to what we now call the Old Testament. In this case more specifically:
You shall not take vengeance or bear any grudge against the sons of your people; but, you shall love your neighbor as yourself. I am Jehovah.
Therefore, we find, at best, that the modern "golden rule" may be a paraphrasing of a statement Jesus made. A statement that both He and the Scriptures (Old and New Testaments) would place well after:
1) Love toward God, and 2) Love toward each other.
The point is neither moot nor mundane. To do unto others, as you would have them do unto you and not love God is fatal! To do unto others, as you would have them do unto you and not love them is fatal! Jesus Himself warns us:
And why call you me, Lord, Lord, and not do the things which I say?
If you love me keep my commandments.
Satan delights in man when we lead ourselves astray by emphasizing the wrong things! Satan even tried this with Jesus - Matthew 4:3/10. It did not work with Jesus; and, with His help, it should not work with us. The so-called "golden rule" is more akin to bronze. We should:
1) Love God
2) Love each other
3) Do unto others, as you would have them do unto you
In Brotherly Love,
Copyright 2013 Thepathtolight.com
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