For none of us lives to himself, and no man dies to himself.…
I. IT IS GOD'S DESIGN THAT WE SHOULD NOT CONFINE OUR REGARDS TO OURSELVES, BUT EXTEND THEM TO OUR FELLOW-MEN. Various considerations may be presented in support of this proposition.
1. The duty relating to man enjoined in the moral law is, "Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself."
2. This testimony of Scripture is confirmed by the gregarious tendencies of man. The instinct implanted in our nature by the Author of our being, which leads men to cling together and to form themselves into communities for mutual assistance and protection, affords no small proof of the Creator's design that they should be fellow-helpers of each other.
3. Additional confirmation of this truth may be found in our social relations.
(1) Men cannot marry within certain limits of consanguinity without their offspring becoming degenerate. Thus God has placed the ban of His displeasure upon the exclusiveness of caste.
(2) Rich and poor have to combine for the accomplishment of given ends. Without the combination of the one's capital with the other's labour, various results now obtained would not be realised. Capital can purchase the raw material; but how, without labour, can it be transported and manufactured? Labour, again, can build the house; but capital is necessary to procure the material and the site.
(3) The division of labour and union of workmen teaches me the same truth. I cannot look on a building or a vessel without being reminded that such works could not have been produced by any number of individuals working in a state of isolation. To how many beside the agriculturist are we indebted for our food! To how many beside the draper for our clothing! It may be said, almost, that every man is indebted to every man, and that every man is to some extent the servant of the humblest man that lives. And it is with nations as with individuals. The superabundant produce of one may, for the profit of both, be exchanged with the manufacture of another, whose produce is insufficient to support its teeming population.
II. IT IS GOD'S DESIGN THAT WE SHOULD NOT LIVE TO OURSELVES, BUT FOR THE PROMOTION OF HIS GLORY.
1. The same law which requires us to love our neighbour as ourselves, also requires us to love God supremely.
2. The nature of man echoes this verdict of inspiration. When I look at heathen nations, I find them everywhere in their own way acknowledging their obligations to a God. There is a law written on every man's heart to the effect that as we are indebted to God for the origin and maintenance of our existence, we owe Him our supreme regard and constant service.
3. Our conviction is strengthened when we survey the external world.
Parallel VersesKJV: For none of us liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself.