So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall! No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.
1 Corinthians 10:12-13
Best. Prayer. Ever. – Lead us not into temptation
“That will never happen to me.” Those were the words of the people of Israel as they walked out of Egypt, rescued from the Egyptians. They were going to be faithful to the God who had been faithful to them. They were going to stay true to him and his commands until death. But they stumbled in the wilderness. They worshipped a golden calf and dared to curse the God who had rescued them.
“That will never happen to me.” Those were almost the exact words of Peter when Jesus told him that he was going to deny knowing Jesus, not just once but three times. And it was hardly a few hours later when Peter did just that and had to run out of the high priest’s courtyard with tears in his eyes.
“That will never happen to me.” Whether it was a public or private confession, we have all made the promise to be faithful to God until death. What Christian wouldn’t say such a thing? But then temptation came. That girl walked by, and you didn’t stop your eye from walking up and then walking down. That boy invited you over, and you didn’t stop the touching and ended up in the bedroom. Your friends threw a party, and you took part in the drugs or alcohol. That website caught your eye, and you clicked and browsed the pornography. You promised yourself and more importantly your God, “I won’t ever do that.” But then you did.
We sincerely desire to be faithful until the very last moment of our lives. And yet none of us is immune from temptation. None of us is above the struggle or beyond the fight. Temptation comes in many forms for all of us every moment of every day. And the Evil One seeks to use temptation to pull us from Christ and destroy our faith in him. What hope do we have since we’ve already given in to temptation in one way or another? What is our hope?
This prayer is our hope. It is a prayer and a petition that acknowledges our weakness and our need and turns us to the One who alone has strength to help us overcome temptation.
This prayer is a petition that turns us from our past unfaithfulness to God’s eternal faithfulness. Did you catch that in the verse? We’re tempted. That’s normal. And God is faithful! He continues to be the God and Father whom he has always been. Always patient. Always forgiving.
He continues to be our God and faithful Father who gives us a way out from temptation. He gives us strength to run away, gives us power to say, “no,” even giving us his Word as our answer to temptation. He even gives us humility to confess our sins after we’ve fallen. Our hope is our God who is faithful to us in every temptation and fall into temptation. He will not fail us. Not now. Not ever.
Prayer: Dear Father, you have asked me to pray to you in temptation. And I need to. I am weak and I easily give into temptation. Please Father, don’t let me fall because of temptations. Help me escape from them. Amen.