1. This morning we examined a number of principles that relate to "revival." 2. This evening we are concentrating on reviving the commandment that Jesus gave in Matthew 7:12 -- it is known as "the Golden Rule." 3. Imagine what: a. the world would be like if every person practiced the Golden Rule b. our country would be like if every citizen practiced the Golden Rule c. our community would be like if every person practiced the Golden Rule. 4. As a result of studying this passage, I trust that we will: a. be impressed with the far reaching effects of the Golden Rule b. determine with the Lord's help to practice it to the best of our ability.
I. THE MEANING OF THE GOLDEN RULE
A. The Lord's words are easy to understand. 1. In our dealings with other people we must put ourselves in their positions. 2. We must determine how we would want to be treated. 3. Then we must act accordingly. 4. Caution: The way we would want to be treated must be based on proper principles. B. The Golden Rule actually explains what the Lord requires in the second commandment (Matthew 22:39). 1. (Luke 10:25-37) Jesus had a discussion with a man about what was involved in loving his neighbor. 2. In the parable of the Good Samaritan,: a. the priest and the Levite did not practice the Golden Rule b. the Samaritan did practice it. C. The Golden Rule sums up many other commandments that relate to our dealings with other people. 1. Jesus said, "this is the law and the prophets." 2. All the commandments in the Law of Moses and in the writings of the prophets that relate to dealings with other people are summed up in this one commandment.
II. FAILURE TO PRACTICE THE GOLDEN RULE RESULTS IN TRAGEDY AND THE GROSSEST KINDS OF SIN
A. Cain did not practice the Golden Rule when he murdered Abel (Genesis 4:8). B. The Christians in Corinth did not practice the Golden Rule when they ate the Lord's Supper (1 Corinthians 11:17-21). C. Several specific matters are addressed in Romans 13:8-10; Galatians 5:13-15; James 2:8-9. D. Practicing the Golden Rule will eliminate sinful activities.
III. SOME MODERN PHILOSOPHIES CONTRADICT THE GOLDEN RULE
A. Some feel that they should be able to treat others as they please without any regard for them. B. Some feel that they should be treated better than they treat others. C. Some do not want to get involved with others. 1. This was the problem with the priest and the Levite. 2. "The way we want to be treated must be based on proper principles." D. Some do not want to help others, but they expect others to help them and give them what they want (selfishness). E. These philosophies are popular, but they directly contradict the Golden Rule.
1. Regardless of whether others obey the Golden Rule, the Lord still requires us to obey it, and we will be held accountable for the way we practice it. 2. Let us make a renewed effort to always treat others the way we want to be treated as we go through 2015.