February 2021, Vol. 40, No. 2

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Carry the Weight

posted on February 1, 2021

[238 words]

It might seem Paul contradicts himself in just a few verses.

In Galatians 6:2 He tells us to “Bear ye one another’s burdens”, then just three verses later he tells us to “every man shall bear his own burden

What gives?

Well, a bit of understanding of the original text is in order. The burden in verse 2 is a word that describes an overload, one that would drop you to your knees, a heavy load. The word in verse 5 is a responsibility, the load any person would be expected to carry in their travels. One is a carry-on bag, the other is a fully loaded down steamer trunk.

There is the difference. Christians are to help when we see those overburdened by life. We are to grab one end and help lift up the load faced by those struggling with the effort. But that doesn’t mean we are to be responsible for taking away every weight from a person. Some folks would love to offload all their responsibilities for someone else to handle. That’s not a good idea.

Help is good. Dependency is not. People unburdened of any responsibility quickly fall apart. Either the privilege goes to their head or they lose a sense of self-worth, or maybe even both.

Carry the weight but also know when that weight is too much there will be someone there to help you lift it up.

Barry Haynes
Hope church of Christ
Hope, AR

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