In their attempt to argue that effective and binding codes can be developed without a deity, atheists often mistake inferior codes of “common decency” for absolute moral systems. The Golden Rule, or doing as you would be done by , is such a code. But the fact that people can arrive at the Golden Rule without religion does not mean that they can arrive at the Christian moral code without religion. Christianity requires much more and, above all, does not expect to see charity returned. To “love they neighbor as thyself” is a far greater and more complicated obligation, requiring a positive effort to seek the good of others, often in secret, sometimes at great cost, and always without reward.
Peter Hitchens, The Rage Against God, pg.142-143