I found it odd that Paul begins this passage saying, “I am not lying”. I admit that the thought crossed my mind, “was Paul known to stretch the truth, so he had to offer such a disclaimer?”
So I appreciated Bob’s explanation of why Paul begins this passage such a defensive way. It makes sense that Paul’s ministry to the Gentiles would have caused some to question his love for the Jews. Paul makes a similar statement that he’s not lying in other places too (2 Cor, Galatians, 1 Tim). It also occurred to me that his letters went out to many people who didn’t necessarily know him personally–people who may have only heard about Paul through heresay–that would be a good reason for him to clarify his truthfulness.
The troubling part of this passage for me, though, as i implied yesterday, is the part where he claims “great sorrow and unceasing anguish” for his lost countrymen. To my chagrin, Bob emphasized the word “unceasing”. (I was hoping Paul didn’t really mean that because it’s getting a bit convicting!) I looked it up this morning–it’s the Greek word adialeiptos (ad-ee-al’-ipe-tos). Sure enough, it means exactly that–unceasing, continual.
I’m left with some questions and I’m hoping that perhaps some of you readers can help shed some light for me.
Have any of us ever experienced unceasing anguish over anything?
Have I ever even experienced any amount of anguish over lost people?
How can we obtain this anguish? (that’s a strange sounding question, isn’t it!)
How is it possible to have joy (rejoice in the Lord always) and unceasing anguish at the same time?
In case you’re wondering what these daily “Reflections” are all about, check out my blog explanation here: Join Me For Breakfast
If you have any insights, stories, or thoughts about today’s passage, please comment below! Thanks!