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The Golden Rule

Text: Matthew 7:1-12

How to build meaningful relationships

Three things NOT to do

Do not judge:

Matthew 7:2In the way you judge, you will be judged; and

by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you.”

James 2:13 “Mercy triumphs over judgment”

John 12: 47 “If anyone hears My sayings and does not keep

them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world,

but to save the world.”

Do not criticize:

Mathew 7:3-5 Why do you look at the speck that is in your

brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?

Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck

out of your eye,’ and behold, the log is in your own eye? You

hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you

will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.”

Numbers 14 “The Israelites were disheartened by the spies

report of the land of Canaan and grumbled against Moses

and God for leading them there. The people rebelled against

God criticizing Moses for leading them there.”

Exodus 16 and 17The Israelites criticized Moses and Aaron

in the wilderness. When they had no food, they complained

and murmured against Moses, and against God. Then God

provided manna, and they complained about it. He gave

them quail to eat and they complained about it as well.

They were critical of God’s provision.”

When we criticize others we devalue them by attacking their

character and personality, highlighting behaviors we don’t like.

It results in the placement of blame on the individual rather

than helping them improve. Criticism almost always results

in resentment and a feeling of being attacked or rejected. It

results in relational distance, defensiveness and distrust.

Do not abandon your values

Not everyone will appreciate what you have to offer. Not

everyone will be receptive to you. There are people that

simply use others for their own gratification. Biblically dogs

were scavengers, unkempt, not what we know as pets today.

Prowling in packs with allegiance only to themselves. “Dog

eat dog” world, selfish, without mercy, violent, defending

themselves to fulfill their own appetites. Aggressive to

secure dominance to meet their carnal needs.

Don’t devalue what you hold holy by feeding it to dogs.

Do not cast your pearls before swine.

The meaning is not to take what you hold as valuable

and precious and cast it before others who have no

appreciation of its value. Pigs will eat about anything.

They are omnivores, They eat grass, roots, fruits, eggs,

mushrooms, insects, and even small animals. They are

opportunity consumers, taking in all that is available

even to the depravation of others. They have a voracious

appetite and are not easily satisfied. They will move from

trough to trough to consume whatever is available.

Jesus is telling folks not to take what is precious and

valuable to you and share it with vapid consumers who

only live to fulfill their appetites.

A pearl is a perfect simile because a fine pearl is a

valuable treasure that needs no polishing or cutting by

man. It comes to us complete and lustrous created by

God through nature, as is the kingdom of heaven, which

only God could create and perfect.


Relationally what are the pearls that we hold dear.

Our time, access, and energy. There are some people

that no matter how much time you spend with them they

want more. They don’t add to your life in anyway, they

only seek to drain you of your energy to constantly meet

their needs.

Our intimacy. Sexual purity is something given to each

one of us at birth. It can only be given once. Those who

are sexual consumers have appreciation f or the value of

purity and just seek pleasure no matter the cost to others

or even themselves.

Our heart

Our reputation

Don’t abandon your values to those who have no

appreciation of your worth.

Three things TO DO


It takes a level of humility to ask something of others, but

it presents an opportunity to deepen the relationship

Asking for help or aid Asking for advice or counsel

When we ask of others, we demonstrate our appreciation

for what they have to offer us. I defined ‘friendship’ to Sandy

years ago as, “Someone you can ask to do something for you

without guilt or need for payment.”


There is an implicit sense of taking the initiative when you

seek something, Waiting for something to show up, or

waiting for someone else to take the initiative reveals how

little we value what is missing, whether that is an object

we have misplaced, or a relationship that has drifted. When

we seek out another person we show how much we value them.


In our day of technology, going to someone’s home without

calling ahead would almost be considered rude. However,

in Biblical times face to face was the primary form of

communication. If you worked during the day, you didn’t

just call someone up or send them a text. In the evening

you would walk to their house to see them.

When I was in Morocco a few years back I was so intrigued

by the culture. In the early evening after dinner, the men

would gather in the courtyard outside the king’s palace.

Tables were brought out from homes and businesses and

the men gathered in small groups to play parcheesi and to

drink mint tea until the sun went down. There was

conversation, laughter, and mutual care for one another.

They enjoyed being together.

The activity of going to one another’s home or getting

together to play games is not the point. The activity is not

as important as the individual who takes the initiative to

communicate and connect. This is what it means to knock

and to seek.

In Everything

Treat others in the manner you wish to be treated

Do you want some closer friends? Do you know someone

who is lonely, or often left out? What if you were the one

who could not get out, or leave the house? Humanity was

created to appreciate and enjoy community. God saw that

is was not good for man to be alone. Community grows when

any of us determines to take the initiative to treat others in

the manner we wish we were treated.

Real love is “You before me.”

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