And lead us not into temptation,Matthew 6:13
But deliver us from evil
It is undeniably true that evil exists. Where there are selfish people, there will always be acts of evil; acts that willfully cause pain and suffering to others. While we can sometimes understand evil acts committed for personal gain, heinous evil committed for its own sake is incomprehensible.
When Christ taught his disciples to pray for deliverance from evil, he knew they would be subject to the evil acts in the world around them, just as we all are. He didn’t tell them to ask for protection from evil, but deliverance.
Coming right after the plea to, “lead us not into temptation,” could this be recognition of our human temptation to respond to evil with evil of our own? Could the verse be interpreted as “deliver us from doing evil?”
Matthew 6:13 is often translated, “…deliver us from the evil one.” We know from the rest of Scripture that the Evil One, Satan, wants to appeal to our baser urges and to tempt us to draw ever further from the Lord’s presence in our lives. We need to pray for God to deliver us from this evil influence which exists all around us.
When confronted by inexplicable evil, such as we have been in Uvalde, Texas, this week, it is tempting to try to make sense of it by lashing out and laying blame, rather than upholding the hurting families in our prayers for comfort and healing.
And lead us not into temptation,
But deliver us from evil, for yours is the Kingdom and the Power and the Glory, Forever. Amen