LICHTSTRAHL 119 Gospel: MAT 4 (1-11) EPIPHANY 26. February 2023
AND LEAD US NOT IN TIMES OF TEMPTATION
“….and lead us not into temptation….”
This plea out of the LORD’s PRAYER is a very challenging one to our understanding of the guidance and leadership of God on the one hand and the guidance through our own godliness. In this prayer we do address the Father God and we do it together with the Christ, his son. Everytime we speak THE LORD’S PRAYER we address the Father and we do it in unity with his son, who has become human and had given this prayert to his disciples to pray these words, if they want to address the Father God.
What is actually attacked in us, when we speak of temptation? Are we attacked in our natural constitution? No. Are we attacked in our soul? No. We are attacked in that part, that can take a decision, that can stand for itself and that we call our Ego, our spiritual self, our I. It is that part in us, where we consciously and actively can connect with the Christ, become aware of the fact that our I is the place, where he lives within us.
Temptation is always aming at that higher being, that is living in every human, once we have reached adulthood. How can we resist temptations? And why are temptations obviously part of God’s universal will? If they were not, there would be no temptation…..
What happens, if we pray?
Prayers as such cannot face and overcome the power of the tempter, in contrary: the more we pray that we do not want to be led into temptation, the more intensively we engage in such content of a prayer, the more weak we seem to get to resist temptations. History has shown that again and again. So how do we pray?
Firstly we have to realize, that the LORD’S PRAYER is never our own prayer. It is that prayer that the Christ has given to us, that he immanently speaks with us, speaks inside us, together with us, whenever we pray it. Then we will start to become much more aware of the fact, that there is someone living inside us, and that it is him, who is always the aim of the tempter, and who has been able to resist the temptation three times – as we heard in today’s gospel reading. It is exactly that higher being in us, which is the carrier of the Christ, that is approached by the tempter – just as he immediately approached him in Jesus after the baptism in the Jordan river.
Through THE LORD’S prayer we unite with the Son, we strengthen him in us and we can trust, that he will be the one who will overcome temptations, not we on our own. Temptations then become a possibility to strengthen our awareness of the Christ in us. We learn to accept them as a part of the godly will. We then would not want to be lead in times of temptation by the Father, but rather strengthen our trust and consciousness of the power of his son in us, and then understand the challenging words about temptation of the LORD’S prayer in slightly different way:
And lead us not in times of temptation.
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