Himalayas of the New Testament Podcast Blog: The Everest of Ethics
Matthew 7: 12 and Matthew 7: 24-27
In my final podcast on the Sermon on the Mount (and of the entire Himalayas of the New Testament season), I cover the peaks within Matthew chapter 7 and look at what has been called "The Everest of Ethics": The Golden Rule, Matthew 7: 12 - "So in everything, do to others as you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets."
I also cover the final statement in the Sermon on the Mount, the Parable of the Wise and Foolish Builders. Here I want to further discuss the Golden Rule.
In the podcast, I point out that other religions and philosophers have tried to craft similar statements, before and after Jesus' time, but have failed to capture the positive goodness that is intended in this statement. Negative goodness, by my definition, is when we consider ourselves good when we don't do something bad. This only gets us so far. Jesus drives us to another level to attain positive goodness, where we "do" instead of "don't do" to others.
As I point out, this is a life-changing philosophy. We will spend our lives looking for good to do. We will sacrifice of ourselves, our time, our money, our energy, our calendar, when we follow the Golden Rule.
In doing so, we will be building our lives on something very solid. Both the Golden Rule and the Parable of the Wise and Foolish Builders insist that we are building atop the foundation of the Law and the Prophets. Jesus said near the outset of the Sermon on the Mount that He has come to fulfill the Law and the Prophets, and he does so in two ways:
His very life is the fulfillment. No one could ever follow the Law to every inch of it, except Jesus. Because He did, He becomes the Law, so to speak. He fulfills it so that our eternal destiny is assured not by perfectly conforming to the written Law, but by believing in Jesus' salvation.
He also fulfills the Law by summarizing it and, in effect, building on that foundation with new commandments spread throughout the Sermon on the Mount. The Golden Rule is the top of that new house, and the Parable of the Wise and Foolish Builders shows us how to build and live in that house.
I have much more to say in the podcast. I hope you'll check it out by either starting at CecilTaylorMinistries.com's Free Content page, or by searching for "Cecil Taylor Monthly Podcasts" on Apple, Spotify and Podbean.
In May, I'll launch season 3 of my podcasts with an analysis of the Top 11 Themes of Jesus found in the gospels.
Please join my Book Party during the third weekend of May, either in person or online, celebrating the Living Water Award presented to "The Next Thing" and introducing "Live Like You're Loved.? The in-person party is on May 20, and the online party is on May 21. For more information, see the invitation on the home page of CecilTaylorMinistries.com or check the Cecil Taylor Ministries Facebook page for the Apr. 10 issuance of the invitation.
Image is of Lhotse, the fourth tallest mountain in the world, known for its three peaks.