Proactive Deliverance

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

Matthew 6:13

The last petition that Jesus teaches us in this example prayer is that we should remember that we are in a spiritual battle that involves more than just mere flesh and blood. We are in spiritual conflict with the true enemy of God, satan. If he is God’s enemy, then he is surely our enemy as we stand in affirmation of the holiness and righteousness of Jesus. This last petition focuses our attention once again on the power and authority of God alone. Our enemy may seem powerful and fully bent on destroying us but he is nonetheless still answerable to the Lord of Heaven and can only go so far as he is allowed. Our prayer then is that our Father will keep us from being led down paths of testing and trials that would lead us to sin and we would be delivered from the schemes of the evil one. That we would have the understanding and faith to lean on Jesus during these times of trials and see our dependence upon him grow and deepen as we learn to trust him and reject disobedience and sin.

I am trying to remember a time in my life when I actually prayed this specifically. I know I have but it seems so far removed from my normal everyday prayer life. I often pray for forgiveness and I often pray for deliverance, but it seems that I rarely pray for the Lord to keep me from being led into temptation and delivering me from sin beforehand. Meaning that I am much less proactive in this regard and typically only focus on my reactive response after falling into sin.

The call from Jesus is for me to live more engaged with my current state of mind and life circumstances. Am I turning a blind eye to different activities and actions that continue to lead me into sin? Am I disregarding God’s gentle hand of correction as I continue to be led astray by my own self-righteousness and self-indulgence? This prayer point is a reminder from Jesus that I need to be caring for my soul. I need to be protecting my soul. I need to be guarding my heart and strengthening my mind. I need to ask the Lord to keep my eyes focused on Jesus during these times of testing and trials. I need to be praying that the Lord will deliver me from the schemes and lies of the evil one as he purposes to destroy me and all that brings glory to Jesus.

I need this daily reminder that I am weak and easily led astray into the pathway of sin. A daily reminder that I am prone to wander and leave the One I love. I need this reminder to drive me closer and closer to Jesus every day. Trials and temptations will surely come every day and I need to have my heart refreshed in the strength and grace of my Savior. I need to ask and ask again for my loving Father to lead me into paths of faithfulness and dependence upon Christ alone.

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