There is much debate about where the Golden Rule originates but many attribute it to Jesus of Nazareth. Relatively early in His ministry He said, in Luke 10:27 in the Parable of the Good Samaritan, “And love your neighbor as yourself.”
But for some reason one of Jesus’ last commandments He spoke directly to His disciples is not as widely know or talked about. The night before He would be crucified he upped the stakes. Shortly after He washed His disciples’ feet in John 13:34 He said, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” He was now saying to love as He loved – a higher standard than the Golden Rule – the Platinum Rule.
So if the new standard is to love as Jesus loved what is that standard? In every instance Jesus put the others ahead of himself – so that is the standard – put others ahead of yourself.
1 Peter 5:5 states “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” The Greek word used here for humble means considering yourself lower than the other person; putting others needs ahead of your needs. Proud is defined as the opposite: considering yourself before others. And He makes us a promise – He will oppose us if we are proud (if we consider ourselves ahead of others). I don’t know about you but I don’t want to be opposed by God!
Paul also states this in Romans 12:10 “Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves.” God makes it very clear that we are to love each other even more than we love ourselves. That was the standard until He sent His son and then we had a new standard – to love as Jesus loves. The Platinum Rule replaced the Golden Rule.
Besides this being a rule, loving others as Jesus did leads to an inner peace that is unique – “When you put others ahead of yourself there is a resulting peace and fulfillment that cannot be duplicated by selfish actions. This is a benefit that God reserves for those that genuinely demonstrate love.”
Try it for one week – actively, intentionally put others and their needs ahead of you and your needs. Put God to the test; see if you can trust Him for what He promises (grace). Pray for His help; recite these verses; hide them in your heart and your mind.
This is not easy – we are all born selfish – this is hard, very hard. But just like most things that are hard it is more than worth it.
In His Service,