“AND LEAD US NOT INTO TEMPTATION; BUT DELIVER USFROM THE EVIL ONE.” | Deeper Study With Annie Tibbs
“AND LEAD US NOT INTO TEMPTATION; BUT DELIVER US
FROM THE EVIL ONE.”
“Seeking His Protection”
God sometimes allows us to be tested by temptation. As disciples, we
should pray to be delivered from these trying times and for
deliverance from Satan (the evil one) and his deceit. All Christians
struggle with temptation. Sometimes it is so subtle that we don’t even
realize what is happening to us. God has promised that He won’t
allow us to be tempted beyond what we can bear (1 Cor. 10:13,
Hebrew 2:18). Ask God to help you recognize temptation and to give
you strength to overcome it and choose God’s way instead.
Satan’s temptations focuses on three crucial areas: (1) physical
desires, (2) possessions and power, and (3) pride, (John 2:15, 16).
But Jesus did not give in (Hebrew 4:15, 16 says that Jesus was
tempted just like we are, but He never once gave in and sinned. He
knows firsthand what we are experiencing, and He is willing and able
to help us in our struggles. When tempted, turn to Him for strength.
The devastating thing about these devilish tactics is that Satan
generally chooses to tempt me in that area of my personality that is not
yet under the full control of God’s Spirit. He knows full well that I am
much more likely to succumb to his inducements where he still can
have sway over my person.
And the resting becomes a clear demonstration as to who really holds
the upper hand in any given area of my life. Does God or does the
devil? Consequently the whole contest for the child of God is one of
deciding whether Christ, by His Spirit, controls me, or whether Satan,
by means of my old self, manages me.
I have sometimes wished this petition had a short rider attached to it
this way, “And lead us not into temptation, but guide us by Your
Spirit.” Of course, our Father does endeavor to do this. The problem
is we are not always sensitive or responsive to the overtures of His
gracious Spirit. We are not always prepared to give Him control of
our conduct. We are not completely sure that he can manage our
affairs. We are not always willing to choose His way.
So, self reasserts itself, and wherever this happens the terrain is open
for Satan to tempt us.
In almost every case where this does occur, it is not our loving
heavenly Father who has led us there. It is our own self-will. It is our
own choice. The only exceptions are those instances in which God
allows us to be tested and exposed to hardship in order to enlarge our
confidence in Himself.
It is for this reason that any man or woman who really desires to come
completely under the control of God’s Spirit must turn over all this
territory to Him. Unless this is done as a deliberate act of the will,
then that ground will be the beach-head from which the enemy will
always launch another assault.
For it is there He demonstrates to us His amazing ability to deliver us
triumphant out of the temptation. Our faith in His faithfulness is
fortified. And our characters are conformed to His.
There is a tendency for us to think of sin, self (or self-will), and Satan
as being more or less widely separated from each other. In fact the
three are so closely intertwined that they can-not be readily divorced
from each other. Or, to put it another way, what it really amounts to is
Satan, appealing to self (our self-will), uses it as a means to make us
sin. He influences us to exert our wills in contradiction to the
expressed will of our heavenly Father. This is to sin.
Because of this, Christ taught us to pray emphatically, “Deliver us
from evil (from the evil one).”
It is tremendously encouraging for us to know that this petition can be
answered positively. It inspires our spirits to realize that we can be
delivered from evil and the evil one. It stimulates our souls and
strengthens our resolve to be completely God’s children. It is possible
to sense the presence and power of Him who can save us from Satan
and sin and our own selfish wills. We do not have to be enticed and
trapped and tantalized by the enemy of our souls. We can be
triumphant in temptation. To know this is to step out of despair into a
delightful walk with our Father.
Our Master was not one to indulge in double-talk. He did not say one
thing and mean another. He would not teach us to ask our heavenly
Father for deliverance from evil if no deliverance was available. He
would not instruct us to pray to be delivered from evil situations if our
Father was unable to do so. But He is. And therein lies a great
measure of the glory and joy of really knowing God as our Father.
Let us never, never forget that our Father does not want to see us
succumb to temptation. He does not want to see us fall. He does not
want to see us down in despair, struggling with self, and stained by
sin. He wants us, as His maturing children, to grow up in strength so
we can walk serenely with Him in the beauty of a strong, unsullied,
We need to remind ourselves, too, that no matter how often or hard we
fall, He is there, waiting to pick us up and restore us. Why? Simply
because we are His children, because He loves us, and because He
knows that only as we go on do we grow up into His likeness.
Remember this: There are three definite, simple, and positive ways
that our heavenly Father delivers us from the evil one. HE IS
ALWAYS THERE. HE IS ALWAYS AVAILABLE. If we are His
children, HIS GRACIOUS SPIRIT RESIDES WITH US. And when
we come into temptation, we need only remind ourselves that He is
there and deliberately turn to Him.