“This is the substance of all relative duty; all Scripture in a nutshell.” Incomparable summary! How well called “the royal law!” ( Jam 2:8; compare Rom 13:9 ). It is true that similar maxims are found floating in the writings of the cultivated Greeks and Romans, and naturally enough in the Rabbinical writings.
But so expressed as it is here–in immediate connection with, and as the sum of such duties as has been just enjoined, and such principles as had been before taught–it is to be found nowhere else. And the best commentary upon this fact is, that never till our Lord came down thus to teach did men effectually and widely exemplify it in their practice. The precise sense of the maxim is best referred to common sense.
It is not, of course, what–in our wayward, capricious, gasping moods–we should wish that men would do to us, that we are to hold ourselves bound to do to them; but only what–in the exercise of an impartial judgment, and putting ourselves in their place–we consider it reasonable that they should do to us, that we are to do to them.
It is within our free choice to act in a way the mirrors God. Upon which we are to be judged. As Jesus gave his second command, ‘to love one another as you love yourself.” We are called to love and act in a manner that is morally right. To offer that loving grace that flows from God through you.
If you cannot, then the consequences are harder on you. For it fortells the lacking of God in you.