Lord's Day 51

Week 50 :: Week 51 :: Week 52


It is important to remember that, as Christians, while the final victory over sin and death are assured in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, we continue to wage a battle with sin in our lives. Indeed, the Westminster Confession of Faith teaches that our sanctification is “imperfect in this life: [for] there abideth still some remnants of corruption in every part, whence ariseth a continual and irreconcilable war, the flesh lusting against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh (see Gal 5:17)”. To this end, Christ teaches us to pray that God would lead us not into temptation and deliver us from evil. 

How are you tempted? Many of us have matured to the point where we have overcome the temptations of our youth: sensual lusts, profanity, and the like. But does that mean that we are not still tempted? Certainly not. Our temptations are more subtle, but are still as deadly. Calvin suggests that we are tempted by “riches, power, honors, which often dull men’s keenness of sight… so that, captivated by such tricks and drunk with such sweetness, men forget their God.” On the other hand, when we face poverty, disgrace, contempt, afflictions and the like, we become despondent in mind and cast away our assurance and hope and are completely estranged from God. We are tempted both by our comfort and by our affliction, one leading us to believe we don’t need God, the other, that we don’t want God. So we pray that God would not lead us into temptation. 

Are we tempted by God? James 1:13 says “God himself tempts no one.” Why then would we need to pray that God would not lead us into temptation? This is a difficult question, perhaps best answered by looking at the motives for our tests and trials. God tests us in one way. Satan in another. Satan tempts us so that he may destroy us. God tests us that he may strengthen our faith, prove our sincerity, and help us to overcome sin in our lives. Satan attacks those who are unarmed and unprepared. “God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it” (1 Cor. 10:13). 


Gracious and everlasting God, you know our hearts, and how we are tempted by this world. You know the cure for our wayward hearts as well. Wean us, through the trials we face, from our stubborn self-reliance, into an ever-growing trust in you alone. We pray this in Jesus’ name. Amen. 

Question 106

Q. 106. What do we pray for in the sixth petition?

A. In the sixth petition, which is, And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil,” we pray, that God would either keep us from being tempted to sin, or support and deliver us when we are tempted.

Scripture Proofs

Matt. 6:13;

And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

Matt. 26:41;

Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

2 Cor. 12:7-8.

So to keep me from becoming conceited because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, a thorn was given me in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to harass me, to keep me from becoming conceited. Three times I pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave me.