The “Golden Rule” is known by most people: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” Given to us by Jesus. this “rule” is found in many, many religions and cultures. It’s a good rule to follow, a good philosophy of life. Jesus certainly wanted us to live by this rule. But Jesus, truthfully, went much deeper than this.
I recently thought about the “golden” rule in terms of my health insurance plan, which has three levels named after metals: silver, gold, and platinum. I thought about three ways that people in society do good unto others.
“The Silver Rule” is the lowest level, but very common. I would put it this way: “Do unto others only when it’s convenient or profitable for yourself.” This level basically has self-centered motivation. The only way good is done for others is for one’s own benefit, whether that benefit be monetary or for recognition or praise.
“The Golden Rule” is a more thoughtful way to live. Not only do I benefit, but the person I do good for benefits as well. It’s a strong reminder to treat others with generosity, kindness, and fairness, basically because these are important values. In other words, everyone, including myself, ought to be treated with generosity, kindness, and fairness.
“The Platinum Rule” goes much deeper. It’s sacrificial way of living. It would go like this: “Do unto others as you would do unto Jesus.” How I treat others doesn’t depend upon what I get out of it. It depends on seeing Jesus in others. It recognizes that each person is a beloved child of God, and deserves to be treated as such.
I suggest that Jesus gave us “The Platinum Rule” in the parable of the sheep and the goats (in Matthew, chapter 25). Jesus taught: “Whenever you feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, visit the sick, and so on, YOU DID IT TO ME!”
Just before sacrificially giving his life, Jesus was teaching: the world is about to be saved, and now, my disciples, the world needs to be loved. So, Jesus sends us, as disciples, to love God’s people, in the same way that we love Jesus.
May God’s Holy Spirit guide you to live by “The Platinum Rule.” Wouldn’t you love to hear Jesus say at the end of your life: “Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world!” Jesus died so that we can hear this Good News!