"In everything, therefore, treat people the same way you want them to treat you, for this is the Law and the Prophets.” (Matthew.7.12.NASB)
The single consistent quality a believer exhibits, that I find throughout all scripture, and by direct observation of those who follow Christ Jesus year after year is one of selflessness. The single quality the world exhibits consistently that I find throughout all scripture and by direct observation is Narcissism. “Narcissism: (noun) an exceptional interest in an admiration for yourself.” (Wolfram Alpha) Narcissistic behavior would therefore be characterized as: egotistical, egomaniacal, self-absorbed, self-centered, self-concerned, self-infatuated, self-interested, self-involved, selfish, self-loving, self-obsessed, self-oriented, self-preoccupied, self-regarding, self-seeking, self-serving.
Bottom line, the world is selfish! We were all born selfish; we were selfish from our mother’s womb. Christ Jesus is the only man born without the disease of Narcissism. In his letter to the Philippians the apostle Paul said; “Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond- servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.” (Phil.2.5-8.NASB)
A theological concept that I have recently learned that I think is helpful in understanding this is called the lndicative and the Imperative. Indicative language indicates who you are, Imperative language is a command. All religion has indicatives and imperatives; manmade religions get them back words saying, "You must do...X, Y, Z in order to become, A. The sovereign grace of the Lord says, “You are, A, therefore you will do X, Y, Z." The apostle Paul writes this way in all his epistles.
A Christian is soundly saved by the grace of God alone; he is not saved by his works, but the Christian does do works. The Lord's brother, James said; "Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself." (James 2:17) So while a Christian is not saved by his works, he will enviably do them, because he is saved. "For we (the saved) are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them." (Eph.2.10)
Just as there is indicative and imperative language in scripture with regards to the elect there is indicative and imperative language in scripture with regards to the damned. So let's take a look at this from Matthew 25:31-46; in this passage the indicatives and the imperatives of the sheep and the goats are placed side by side for comparison. The Lord divides the sheep and the goats, putting the sheep on his right and the goats on his left. The sheep he calls "blessed of My Father"; the goats he calls "accursed ones". The sheep (the blessed of the Father) are note worthy for their love of Jesus, demonstrated by doing selfless good works. The goats (the accursed) are note worthy for their love of self, demonstrated by their selfish deeds of the flesh. At the judgment He says to the sheep, "Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world"; to the goats he says, "Depart from me, accursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels."
As stated earlier, we are all born Narcissistic; that’s why Jesus told Nicodemus, “Truly, truly I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” (John.3.3.NASB) A self-seeking Narcissistic man is not going to seek after God; he cannot nor will not. The born again believer in Christ Jesus sanctified becomes more and more like King Jesus, marked by a selfless love for other people. The unregenerate will continue to walk in Narcissism; the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the boastful pride of life. Are you born again? Jesus said; “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you love one another.” (John.13.34.NASB)
A slave of Jesus Christ