March 15, 2010

A Daily Online Lenten Study Guide: Day 23



Monte Holland

This is the twenty-third in a series of daily Lenten devotionals called “Scriptural Lessons Leading to a Godly and Moral Life.” To start the study, click on: A Daily Online Lenten Study Guide: Introduction or

To view yesterday’s A DAILY ON-LINE LENTEN STUDY GUIDE click on: A Daily Online Lenten Study Guide: Day 22

 Today’s photographs feature the stained glass windows at the First Lutheran Church in Greensburg, PA.  To view click on:


The Golden Rule

12 Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets. Matthew 7:12

31 And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise. Luke 6:31

     I think some people are surprised to learn that the Golden Rule comes from the Bible. They think of it as just good common sense. On the other hand, it’s much like an extension of the second part of the Great Commandment—don’t we all like to be loved by our neighbors? The Golden Rule tells us if we want to be loved, we should be fully obedient to the Great Commandment, including loving our neighbor.

     Sometimes people make our life difficult.

     I remember back over fifty years when I was in college. I had a chemistry class with a friend, Jim, who was in a fraternity. One of his fraternity brothers, Bob, was also in our class. One day, when there was an exam, Bob wasn’t prepared, and expected Jim to keep his paper exposed so that he could copy the answers. Jim was upset by this request, and didn’t comply.

     The Golden Rule doesn’t call for us to violate a Commandment (giving an answer dishonestly) just to help out a friend. After all, we should not want him to help us cheat either.

     In a popular TV ad right now, one person says to his buddies, “Friends don’t let friends watch cable TV. They make sure they have satellite TV.” This puts a positive spin on the Golden Rule: if you find something good, make sure you share it with your friends.

     On the negative side, the phrase “Finders keepers. Losers weepers,” expresses the opposite of the Golden Rule. No matter what we do, we continually are being challenged to make sure that our actions honor our neighbors.

     Currently, some people have unintentionally (in most cases) violated the Golden Rule. As a result, many people are losing homes to foreclosure because they can’t pay their mortgage. In neighborhoods where a number of homes go into foreclosure, the value of the other homes drops dramatically. Do you believe that the Golden Rule applies to not diminishing the value of your neighbor’s home?


Exercise 1: You hang out with a group of close friends. One of them, John, goes out and is caught not only with drugs in his possession, but being “high.” Has John kept the spirit (more…)

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