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How to Treat One Another

In Touch / Charles Stanley
The Truth Network Radio
December 6, 2022 12:00 am

How to Treat One Another

In Touch / Charles Stanley

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December 6, 2022 12:00 am

Learn how to foster healthy relationships.

In Touch
Charles Stanley
Running to Win
Erwin Lutzer
The Urban Alternative
Tony Evans, PhD

Welcome to the In Touch Podcast with Charles Stanley for Tuesday, December 6th. Most people would agree that Christ's command to love your neighbor as yourself is a good idea.

But what does that actually require? Today's podcast gives practical teaching on how to treat one another. Relationships are very, very important. In fact, they affect every single area of our life. Relationships are essential in business, in your family, relationships to your children. In every aspect of your life, relationships are very important. How would you judge your relationships with your husband or your wife, with your children, with your parents, with your friends, with your co-workers? How do you relate to people that you meet for the first time? You may have a very brief momentary meeting, but what kind of relationship do you have at that moment? Oftentimes we think these are things we can just take for granted, but not really. What I want to talk about in this message is this, how to build strong relationships. Very important aspect of our life that sometimes we just think, well, we just automatically know how to do that. We don't.

We have to learn how to do it. And Jesus gave us the basis of strong relationships in one single verse of Scripture. In the Sermon on the Mount, Matthew chapter seven, verse twelve. A verse of Scripture that many people will say, oh, I know that verse of Scripture.

Well, you know what? Knowing how to quote a verse and knowing how to practice a verse is two different things. Jesus has just begun to talk about prayer. And He says, asking it shall be given you and seeking you shall find and knocking it shall be open. Then He talks about how the Heavenly Father desires to answer our prayers. And when He finishes that, He says in verse twelve, in everything.

Watch that. Not some things, not most things. In everything, therefore, treat the people the same way you want them to treat you. This is the law and the prophets.

Look at that. Jesus made it very clear, He said, treat other people the way you want them to treat you. So, well, I've heard that all of my life.

Well, you may have heard it, but how much have you practiced? In fact, do you even understand what it means? Do you understand what it means to treat someone else the way you want them to treat you? And so it's very evident when we look around, that's not the way people are living. That's why most homes are in turmoil. Most people in the relationship to their kids have all kinds of difficulty.

Why? Jesus gave us in one single verse. The problem is we don't understand the verse. We think because we call it the golden rule and it's popular that certainly we know what it means.

But do we really and truly know what it means? What I want us to do is to understand what this says, what it does not say, and how we can practice it. And somebody says, well, but suppose I treat other people the way I want to be treated and they don't treat me back.

That's not your responsibility. Our responsibility, every single child of God, every single person who's said, I've trusted Jesus Christ as my personal Savior, you should not only be a believer in Jesus Christ, you're to be a follower. And a follower of Jesus Christ obeys the commands of Jesus.

And this is one of many of His commands. It's simple, but it's profound and it affects every single aspect of our life. We can quote it and walk away from it, but I'm here to tell you, we all suffer, every single one of us suffers when we don't practice this principle of treating other people the way we want them to treat us. So let's think about it for a moment.

Look at it. Now, if you'll think about this as a command and a principle, it is a command, watch this, it is a command that reveals the very heart of God. It is a command, listen, that tells us how God thinks about us. It tells us how God wants you and me to treat one another. Somebody says, well, how does God want us to treat each other? You don't have to read the whole Bible to find that out. You can read one verse. And the verse says, God says, I want you to treat other people the way you want them to treat you.

It's just that simple. And yet in spite of that, we rationalize it and we say, well, you know, I understand that that's possibly true and I understand this and I understand that. It is a principle and it is a command. It is a principle by which you and I to live.

And you see, if I disobey this particular command, I'm being disobedient to Jesus. Somebody says, well, but I mean, nobody's perfect. We're not talking about being perfect. We're talking about the way you and I to treat each other.

You see, listen carefully. We live in a society that's wrapped up in the triad, me, myself and I. We've become a selfish and a very self-centered generation of people. We have so much, but we act like we don't have enough because we can't figure out what enough is.

And let me just say this. You can't get enough things, material things, a prestige, a prominence, a popularity or any of the rest. Listen, that will even begin to substitute for one great, strong, satisfying, enjoyable relationship. Life isn't about things. Life's about relationships. Our relationship to ourselves. Relationship to our Heavenly Father.

To His Son, Jesus Christ of the Holy Spirit. Relationship to our friends, our family. Relationships that are oftentimes very brief, momentary meetings.

What kind of relationships do you have? Let's think about this verse for a moment because oftentimes people misinterpret it. Somebody says, well, I don't hurt people. I don't lie to people. I don't manipulate people.

I don't do this and I don't do that and I don't do the other. That's not even the issue. The issue's not what you don't do. A person who's not even a Christian, who doesn't even know anything about Jesus, who's not even religious, would fall in the category of people maybe who do not steal. They don't lie, they don't cheat, they don't commit adultery and they don't do a lot of things.

That's not what Jesus said. He said, treat them, positive action. Treat them the way you want to be treated.

To boast about what you don't do to people is not even the issue. The issue is how do you treat them? How do you want them to treat you?

And it's very important that we understand what Jesus said in this simple verse. Listen, in everything, that is in every circumstance, in every situation, how are we to respond to those around us? We're to treat them in the same way we want to be treated. Listen, if we were in their circumstance, that is, I'm to treat the other person the way I want them to treat me. If the situation were reversed, then I were them and they were me. How do I want them to treat me?

Well now, there's a little catch at this and I want you to watch this carefully. Because you see, I wonder if you've ever asked yourself the question, how do I want to treat people? And how do I want people to treat me? Could you fill up a whole page?

Could you even answer that question? You say, well, why is that so important? I'm going to show you in a moment why it's extremely important that you know how you want people to treat you. How many words would it take? Would you say, well, I think what I would do, I would take your list. I would take this list and I would say, well, I certainly want them to enjoy me, to take pleasure in me, to be loyal to me, trusting me, be interested in me, concerned about me, desire me, to please me, to be truthful to me, to pray for me, to desire me. I say, on down the list we go.

Is that what you want? Make a list. How do you want your friends to treat you? How do you want strangers to treat you when you meet them? We don't think about that until we get in some situation and in the midst of the situation, then we're trying to figure out what our feelings are. Well, let's say somebody hurts your feelings really badly by something they say. How do you feel? And let's say, for example, that you hurt their feelings. How do you want them to respond?

Have you ever just stopped to think, how do I want people to treat me in every aspect of my life? For example, let's take the lady, the mother. Let's take the wife. She cooks this fantastic meal. But she tries two or three things she's never cooked before. And she's given her best. She sits down at the table and big smile, wondering how you're going to respond.

And you say, what's that? That is not the right way to respond. Or she comes out and you're going somewhere for the evening and you say, are you going to wear that? That's not the way you want to respond. Is that what you would want her to say to you if you walked out in a sport coat and some silly tie that you thought looked absolutely fantastic and she thinks it's terrible?

You want her to say, well, are you going to wear that thing? No. You know what? We hurt each other. We have misunderstandings. We create them because we don't stop to think, how do I want someone to treat me? Now, if you've heard everything I've said so far, say amen.

Here's the catch. Whatever you decide about how you want people to treat you, you make a commitment automatically. That's the way you intend to treat everybody else. So, when you make your list, you have to ask yourself the question, am I willing to treat everybody else the same way?

You've made a list, this is the way I want people to treat me. Listen to what Jesus said, He made it very clear, very, very clear. In everything therefore, treat people the same way you want them to treat you. So, if I decide how I want you to treat me, if I'm obedient to His command, then what I'm saying is, therefore, this is the way I'm going to treat you. Jesus said, you're not to be like salt and like light.

We'd have had this twang in our life, this influence in life that does what? Salt preserves and heals and all the many things we've talked about. What happens if you and I are salty, we make a difference. He says we're to be salt and like light.

You are never more salty, never brighter than when you and I are doing what? Treating other people the way we want to be treated. It gets their attention no matter who they are, no matter how wicked and vile they are. When we come across to them treating them the way we want to be treated, they cannot ignore it. They may slander us, they may criticize us, they may do all kind of things, but the truth is they cannot ignore it. You know why they can't ignore it?

Because it's so totally unlike them. And that's what makes godly people influential, because we're unlike the world, because there's a sense of God on the inside of us, Christ living on the inside of us. And so when you and I begin to treat people the way we want them to treat us, it makes all the difference in the world. You see, the world can't understand this because the world's idea is what?

I beat you two before you beat me. Greed, selfishness, self-centeredness reeks in our society. And so you come along and what do you do? You live a whole different lifestyle. You're asking the question, now how do I want that person to treat me? I don't care what they do, that's where I'm going to treat them.

They don't know how to handle it. And so therefore if you say in your own heart, well you know what? I do understand that, but I'm not sure I could do that. You can't do it apart from our Father.

You can't. All of us have enough naturalness in us. Listen, when somebody wrongs you, if you live on the edge, and many people are living on the edge of anger, somebody wrongs you or says the wrong thing and you snap back, you know what the problem is? You snap back so quickly to defend yourself. Is that necessary?

Not nearly necessary. Suppose you said, well I appreciate you telling me how you feel. What do you mean you appreciate me telling you how? I just told you off and you're telling me you appreciate it?

Yes I do. Now I know how you feel toward me. You know what? They don't know how to handle that.

The natural man and woman, that is the person who does not know Jesus Christ as their personal Savior. Listen, they've grown up in a society, listen, what? Eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth.

Now in our society, it's not an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth, it's many eyes for a eye and many tooths for a tooth. They take you to court, see you, get everything they possibly can. Is that the way you want them to treat you?

I don't think so. I know that's not the way you want them to treat you. Now what does it take to obey this command? Here's what it takes. It takes a personal relationship with God through His Son Jesus Christ because everything in us, the naturalness with which we came into this world, Paul calls the flesh, our old carnality, those propensities toward sin and disobedience that lie within all of us.

We have to deal with that. And it is only when Christ comes into our life and we begin to honor Him as our Lord and we begin to follow Him as our Savior, Lord and Master, then He empowers us. That is the Spirit of God who lives within us, thus what? He empowers us to do what? To be forgiving and to be thoughtful and to be kind and not to be prejudiced toward people, but to be what? To be willing not to pick and choose, but to treat everybody the same way. You say, will He do that in my life?

Yes, He will. He will enable you, strengthen you. Listen, He is the only one who can enable you to live this out, to help you understand what are the desires of my heart and how do I want people to treat me and how do I therefore want to treat them in return? Treat them the way I want them to treat me. It takes a relationship with our Lord.

Listen to what He says. He says, Matthew chapter ten, He says, watch this, He says, freely you have been given, freely give to others. Matthew ten, verse eight, freely it's been given to you, freely give to others.

Think about how Lord's given you so much. Freely give to others. You want other people to give to you?

Freely give to them. Does He not say give and what? It shall be given to you.

Watch this verse now. Give and it shall be given you what it? What's the it? Anything and everything. Give and it shall be given to you. How?

Good measure, pressed down, shaken together. It shall return you. Say, now wait a minute. You mean to tell me that if I treat people the way I want to be treated, that they're going to treat me right? I can't guarantee that.

I can guarantee you this. Listen carefully. He's not going to overlook your obedience to Him. And I can think in times in my life where maybe someone else has mistreated me and I've tried to treat them the way I want to be treated and they didn't treat me that way.

But you know what? God supplied that treatment in ways I would never have been able to imagine, in an abundance I could never begin to enjoy. Listen, God isn't going to come up short with you when you obey Him no matter what. So let's say you live with somebody who's not treating you right and you try your best to treat them the way you want to be treated and they don't treat you that way.

You say, well now how long am I to do that? Does this verse say, listen, you've already got the message, haven't you? In everything for a short period of time, no, He doesn't say that. You know what happens? When you and I obey this command, please don't overlook this, when you and I obey this command, you never come up short, you never do the wrong thing.

Listen, it's never a failure, it's never a sign of weakness when you treat people the way you want to be treated. And does He not say in the Scripture very, very clearly, He says, listen to this, watch this. You see, we say, we believe all this. Whatsoever man or woman sows, that shall they also reap. Reap what? What they sow, more than they sow, later than they sow. And you know what?

You can't determine what field it's coming from. When you and I do the right thing, God always honors that. You will never be able to determine the impact of your life when you live out this simple principle.

Here's what's going to happen, now watch this. When you treat people the way you want them to treat you, you're going to have this sense of accomplishment, first of all, that you've done the right thing. Secondly, you're going to have the awareness in your heart that you just pleased the Father. You pleased the Father because that's what He said, treat other people the way you want to be treated. Thirdly, you're going to have this sense of excitement of how is God now going to treat me through others when I treat this person the way I know that I want to be treated. How is God going to restore all this?

And then you're going to have this awesome sense of awareness that the love of the Father is flowing through you to the other person. And you know what? They may resist it or they may not.

It won't make any difference. Watch this carefully. Don't forget this. When you and I treat other people the way we want them to treat us, the Father will bless us in ways we could never begin to imagine. We don't have to worry about the consequences. He assumes the full responsibility for our future treatment when we obey His simple command. And Father, how grateful we are that You would condescend to have a relationship with us. As unworthy and as unfit as we are, You've chosen to forgive and to cleanse and to make us righteous in Your sight.

And then to teach us and equip us how to have relationships with other people. I pray that You'll sink this message very, very deep. Let not a single person escape its truth. Let it ring in our ears, not for today, but for weeks and months and years and forever, that this is the way to build lasting relationships in Jesus' name. Amen. Thank you for listening to How to Treat One Another. If you'd like to know more about Charles Stanley or In Touch Ministries, stop by This podcast is a presentation of In Touch Ministries, Atlanta, Georgia.
Whisper: medium.en / 2022-12-06 03:32:21 / 2022-12-06 03:40:42 / 8

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