But rather, Instead, But also
"ἀλλά, an adversative particle, derived from ἀλλά, neuter of the adjective ἄλλος, which was originally pronounced ἄλλος (cf. Klotz ad Devar. ii., p. 1f), hence properly, other things namely, than those just mentioned. It differs from δέ, as the Latin at and sed from autem, (cf. Winer's Grammar, 441f (411))."
Katabiblon gives additional meaning:
ἀλλά but-rather emphatic/hard-adversative, "but-rather/instead", as distinct from the softer, more common, "δέ"
LSJ lists examples of its correlative conjunction function of alla, with and without the conjunction pair alla kai, but also etc:
- c freq. after οὐ μόνον, μὴ μόνον, with or without καί, οὐ μόνον ἅπαξ, ἀλλὰ πολλάκις Pl.Phdr.228a, cf. Th. 3.59, X.Mem.1.4.13, etc.; without μόνον, οὐχ ἑσπέρας, ἀλλὰ καὶ μεσημβρίας E.Fr.1006: also after οὐχ (or μὴ ( ὅτι, οὐχ (or μὴ) ὅπως, either, not only . . but... μὴ ὅτι ἰδιώτην τινά, ἀλλὰ τὸν μέγαν βασιλέα Pl.Ap.40d; μὴ ὅτι κατὰ τὸ σῶμα, ἀλλὰ καὶ κατὰ τὴν ψυχήν Id.Smp. 207e; or, not only not . . but... οὐχ ὅπως κωλυταὶ . . γενήσεσθε, ἀλλὰ καὶ . . περιόψεσθε Th.1.35; οὐχ ὅτι ὠργίζοντο, ἀλλ' ἐζήλουν D.19.265; the neg. form is ἀλλ' οὐδέ, μὴ ὅτι ὑπὲρ ἄλλου, ἀλλ' οὐδὲ ὑπὲρ ἐμαυτοῦ δίκην εἴρηκα Is.10.1, etc.
The sentence in Matt 6:13 does show contrast, but not the typical kind of simple contrast. The two clauses are somewhat complementary, but the second clause is a greater idea. If "but rather" is used in instead of but, it may help to clarify the meaning. "Rather" as a conjunction, is often used in phrases such as "but rather" to introduce a new or contrasting idea that suggests something the writer would rather do, or to indicate an alternative or preference. It can also be used to indicate an additive relationship between two clauses. The use of "but rather" is an example of a correlative conjunction pair that is used to link a negative statement with a following statement, indicating a fuller or truer description of the situation. The use of "not only...but also" is a correlative conjunction that emphasizes the parallelism between the two requests. It depends on you, which way would you translate the verse, if not as a simple contrast using "but".
Another word choice is the adverb instead. I was offered a ride, but I chose to walk instead. I was going to write but called instead. Some sentences using but:
- We must not complain about the problem, but (= instead we must) help to put it right.
- She's not a painter but a writer (= she is a writer, not a painter).
- She's not only a painter but also a writer (= she is both).
Similarly, you can understand the following verses, by supplying an additive conjunctive adverb with but: but also, but rather, instead:
Matt 5:39 Do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.
Matt 8:4 “See that you say nothing to anyone, but go, show yourself to the priest and offer the gift that Moses commanded, for a proof to them.”
NHEB Matt 6:16 'lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one’, asks God to not only protect us from temptation, but also rescue us from the evil one. The type of contrast between the clauses can be understood by their smaller and greater relation.