go the extra mile

go the extra mile

Meaning

  • to make an extra effort
  • try very hard to achieve something
  • to do more than expected
  • to make special efforts

Example Sentences

  1. When it comes to weaker students, the teacher goes the extra mile to help them understand.
  2. I love staying at that hotel. They go the extra mile to make their guests happy.
  3. She is a very nice person and is always willing to go the extra mile to help others.
  4. If you are willing to go the extra mile at work, you are bound to get noticed and grow professionally.
  5. I was impressed with the way the customer service officer went the extra mile to resolve my problem.
  6. It is often required to go the extra mile in order to keep a relationship strong and happy.
  7. He’s not a very loyal person. I wouldn’t go the extra mile to keep him in our team.

Origin

This phrase is an adaptation of a commandment of Jesus in the Sermon of Mount (Matthew Ch 5 v 41) : “And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain.” Under the Roman Impressment Law, a Roman soldier passing by a Jew could order him to carry his pack for one mile. Jesus asked his followers to go two miles instead of one.

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G 6 Thoughts

6 Thoughts

The saying given by Jesus is in the context of His teaching in the Sermon on the Mount in which He challenges His disciples and the listeners to be more righteous than the Scribes and Pharisees; the pillars of virtue in Jewish society. In particular, going the extra mile is in the teaching beginning in v38 regarding “an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.” The challenge is for Christians, the followers of Jesus, to exemplify lives radically different from their society, characterised by grace toward others since Christians have received God’s undeserved grace. It’s all about the heart of the one going the extra mile, not on the one receiving the extra mile of service; i.e. the Roman soldier. This is why Anon’s and Queen Bogs comments are inconsistent with Jesus intended meaning.

- Banksie December 13, 2021

Anon is exactly right. You deprive the oppressor of the illusion of a hold over you when you consider it nothing to volunteer another mile. You are more free than they recognize. JC was captain passive resistance.

- Queen Bogs December 3, 2021

Soldiers could not require or order more than a mile. But if someone offered to do an extra mile, were they not allowed to accept it? It seems to me that the real message is that even if it’s not required of you, unjust system or not, you should put an extra effort on everything that you do.

- David Silva June 24, 2021

Yes, Roman soldiers could not require more than a mile, so the law abiding soldier would merely take his pack back after a mile. And going the extra mile for a solder that didn’t follow the law is not resistance. Jesus tells us not to resist the evil person. So, Anon’s interpretation is an outlier.

- John WIL Haus August 12, 2020

The roman soldier was only allowed to order someone to carry his pack 1 mile. By carrying it 2 miles, the soldier would be in violation of the law and could be punished. The phrase was intended to be a passive fight back against an unjust system, not “putting in extra effort”.

- Anon May 6, 2020

Can you add a list of idioms all in a line and be able to click it to see the meaning and everything else?

- Jeff the odd man February 15, 2018

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