21 Days of Prayer and Fasting - Day 13
Matthew 6:13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.’
Jesus brought his exemplary demonstration of prayer to its conclusion with this culminating line. The invitation of prayer here is to move beyond moments of prayer into a new way of life led by God. This reconnects us back to “your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” In prayer, we are to hand our “kingship” and “leadership” to God, relinquishing control, and moving forward in the way of God’s kingdom. A moment of prayer leads us to movement in the way of Jesus.
We can trust that God will lead us well. The heart of God for His children is to lead us not into temptation, or into testing that preys on our deceived hearts or disordered desires. Out of our hearts come deceit and evil (Matthew 15:19). We sometimes fool ourselves or are easily tricked into decisions that do not help us flourish in the will of God. Prayer is an invitation for us to ask God for help with this. Jesus promised that the Holy Spirit would be our advocate (John 14:16) defending us, guiding us, reminding us, convicting us, and cautioning us. Prayer is how we walk with the Spirit, live by faith and not by sight, and not step into traps along the way.
We need this leading because there is evil and an evil one looking to prey on us. This evil is the way of the world, and the evil one is the enemy, or the devil. In both cases, whether with evil or the evil one, the primary tactic, tool, or mechanism used to trap and enslave us is lies. Lies about God, who you are, your neighbor, the world, what matters most, and even the subtleties of life. In fact, these lies are not blatant or direct, but rather subtle, cunning, and appealing. The design though is consistent - to chip away at our trust in God just as the serpent did in Genesis 3. Subtly twisting what God had said, and cunningly moving Adam and Eve toward distrust. Without realizing it, we are often shaped and formed by the lies that we believe.
The invitation in the culmination of this exemplary prayer of Jesus is to be delivered. This is freedom. Freedom from ourselves, our sin, our shame, the way of the world, and the evil one. Freedom to experience life with Jesus, become like Jesus, and do what Jesus taught us to do.
In what ways do you need to ask God to lead you?
Take a moment to reflect on how God has delivered you, and the freedom that has been provided through Jesus.