“Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.”
By all means, we should avoid temptation. We should seek to walk in obedience to God and never tempt the devil to tempt us. The scripture says, “Stay alert! Therefore, watch out for your great enemy, Satan, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8 NLT). Why would you walk into the brush in search of the lion? By all means, stay away! He could very well pounce on you from the brush. It makes no matter how much Bible you know if you encountered the lion, you would have quite a struggle defending yourself against him.
That is why we should pray that God spares us from the encounter. Jesus experienced temptation, and admonished His disciples to “Pray that you do not enter into temptation.” If we blindly walk in disobedience, we will be tempted. Therefore, we should always pray, that God “deliver us from evil.”
The devil tempts us by exploiting our weaknesses. He does not play by any rules. He knows where we are weak and he looks for opportunities to stir passion in our hearts. The three categories that Satan uses are the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life (1 John 2:16).
He tempts us in the flesh by pointing to our natural desire. He then suggests that we meet that desire in our own selfish way. For example, Satan tempted Eve with her natural desire for food. But he made her think God was withholding something from her in Genesis 3:6. However, Eve’s desire for food was not wrong. Satan exploited her weakness for food. It became a sin when she gave in to the temptation to disobey God.
As you go about your day, be on the lookout for Satan. Like the thief that he is, he gives no warning of his approach. Prevention is always better than cure. Throughout the day pray that you will not enter into temptation, And, if you are tempted, pray that you are delivered from the evil one.
Father God, today I am committed to walking in obedience to Your word. I pray that you lead me on the path of righteousness and away from temptation. I pray that you deliver me from evil. Break the chains and loosen the bonds between known and unknown, seen and unseen, familiar and strange, big and small, direct and indirect evil. Surround me with your favor. In Jesus’ name. Amen.