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What is the meaning of the plea in the Lord's Prayer: "... And lead us not into temptation…"?

The term "temptation" refers to that which entices man to separate from God and to fall prey to disobedience and disbelief. In this respect, temptation is a severe trial in which faith and trust in God are tested.

What does temptation or test of faith mean in the context of the Lord's Prayer? In the first place, it is an established fact that God Himself does not tempt anyone. He permits, however, the Devil to test the faithful and so lead them into disbelief. God exposes human beings to a situation of testing with the goal of proving and strengthening their faith. The Devil's purely negative intention can not alter this positive function of a trial of faith.

In pleading "… deliver us from the evil one" the individual or a congregation expresses the wish that the Lord may not grant the Devil or their own evil desires any room, i.e. that He may not allow severe tests of faith, and that He forever destroy the Evil One's power.

Through Jesus Christ's sacrifice, the foundation for redemption from evil has been brought about. It will, however, not become absolute reality for the bridal congregation until the time of their translation, and for those called to the new creation only in the new creation.

With the plea in the Lord's Prayer "... And lead us not into temptation…" we ask God

  • not to allow severe tests of faith and
  • to forever destroy the Evil One's power.