Luke 6:31 "Do to others as you would have them do to you."

What ever happened to the golden rule? These days, when I ask people what rule they live by, the one thing I donít here is the golden rule. How then are people living? For some, the rule is might makes right, and so their lives are devoted to being mighty. For others, the rule has become - do unto others before they do it unto you, and their lives are ones of increasing enmity and violence. Yet others hove come to believe that the golden rule is - He who has the gold makes the rules. And as a result their lives are devoted to acquiring wealth, by any means. There are yet other ways by which people live, and while they all seem different, they all have one common thread - they do not trust in God above all things, they do not believe that he will provide for all their wants, and because of this God is not at the center of their lives, he might not be there at all, for the one thing that all these things have in common is simple idolatry, for all these people worship something other than the true living God.

How did this happen? Again the answer is simple, and it seems to begin with the idea, that for one reason or another we are owed certain things. Iím not clear why it is that people believe that they are owed certain things, partly because everyone talks about different things that are owed them. What is clear is that many have a false idea as to what a good work is. You donít earn anything by keeping the commandments. You donít earn anything by keeping the commandments, because keeping the commandments perfectly, is God minimum requirement for all people. And if you once fail to keep the commandments perfectly, there is nothing you can do to make up for even one sin. And would that it were only one sin, but the scriptures remind us that we all sin much, daily. And the scriptures also remind us that the wages of sin is death. Those who are wise, are therefore careful not to demand of God to give them what they deserve, rather they humbly pray that God would have mercy on them.

You see while the wages of sin is death, the free gift of God in Christ is eternal life. The gift of God , the blood of Christ, takes away our sin and guilt, it makes us a new creation, it gives us peace with God. And all the power nor all the wealth could obtain, what we have received by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. This good news of salvation is the greatest treasure the world has ever seen.

So how is it that we are able to do unto others as we would have them do unto us? Quite simply this command is possible only for believers. For the one thing that believers remember is not what others have done to them, but the great thing that God in Christ, working through water and the Word, has done. For our sins have been taken away, our guilt removed, we have been freed from the bonds of our sin, and we have been made a new creation. We have been given the victory, over sin, over death, and over the devil, the same victory that Christ won by his death and resurrection from the dead. "Do to others as you would have them do to you." It is simple for believers, for we remember that God in Christ has already done all this and more for us. It is simple, for just as surely as God has forgiven all our sins, so also are we sure that God will provide for all our needs. And if God so richly provides for us, what is there that we could ever lack? Who is strong enough to steal from God? And if no one can snatch us out of Godís hand, then it is also clear that no one can take from us anything that God cannot replace with something better. It is this mind that we can then hear the rest of Jesus words: Luke 6:27-37 "Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you. If anyone strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also; and from anyone who takes away your coat do not withhold even your shirt. Give to everyone who begs from you; and if anyone takes away your goods, do not ask for them again. Do to others as you would have them do to you... But love your enemies, do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return. Your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High; for he is kind to the ungrateful and the wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. "Do not judge, and you will not be judged; do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven; give, and it will be given to you."

This is the way we have been called to spread the good news of Jesus Christ.