Digesting God’s Word: “Let Us Not”

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Continued from here.

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” ~ Galatians 6:9

Today, we are going to focus on the first three words of this Bible verse: “Let us not.” Doesn’t seem like much to focus on, does it? Believe it or not, there’s much to digest in those three simple words.

Paul begins this verse with “Let us not,” which means that we have a choice. If we didn’t have a choice, then there wouldn’t be the need to include these words. He could simply state the facts without giving us any instruction about what to do with those facts.

When Paul says, “Let us not,” he is telling us that doing whatever comes next is an option, but he recommends against choosing that option. We are free to choose … or not to choose … whatever comes next in the verse, but his advice is to choose not to do it.

Paul needs to advise us not to do whatever comes next because we will be inclined to do it. After all, we don’t need to advice not to do something that isn’t tempting. For example, Paul wouldn’t need to advise me not to put my hand in a blender or chop my fingers off with a knife. It wouldn’t occur to me to do those things because I can readily see the danger in doing them.

If Paul sees the need to advise me against doing something, then it must be something that would appeal to me in some manner. Instead of being repulsed by the idea (as I would be at the idea of cutting off my own fingers), the idea must have some sort of lure or hold some sort of temptation that I should look out for. In legal terms, it must be an attractive nuisance: something that has the possibility of drawing me in, but instead of receiving the pleasure or satisfaction that calls to me, it will bring me harm.

So, as I move on to the next words in the verse, I need to pay attention to what Paul is warning me against. I need to pay attention to the object of “Let us not,” recognizing that while I am likely to feel drawn to it, there’s danger in following that inclination. I need to put my guard up and prepare myself so that I don’t follow this temptation into harm’s way.

Continued here.

[Graphic: Cartoon of Grace holding up a sign that says, “No.” Courtesy Bitmoji.]

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