A brief thought on Matthew 11:28-30

Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light. — Matthew 11:28-30

Our stake president quoted this verse during the adult session of our stake conference last night. I had my iPad out to take notes (using the Index Card app), so on a whim, I flipped over to the Kindle app, where I have an interlinear Greek New Testament (full disclosure: I had exactly one semester of New Testament Greek some 35 years ago at BYU, but I keep poking at it) and tapped on a few of the key Greek words to see if there were any insights to gain.

As it turns out, the Greek word that is translated as “rest” in verses 28 and 29 is anapauo, which does not necessarily mean to cease from all labor from that point on. Instead, the primary meaning is “to cause or permit one to cease from any movement or labour in order to recover and collect his strength” (Strong’s 373). In other words, one could interpret this to mean that the Savior isn’t saying that we will cease to labor under His yoke; instead, He is promising to give us the periodic rest breaks we need to be able to continue our labors.

Sort of like my current calling as High Priests Group secretary. Hmm.  ..bruce..


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