Wednesday, March 13, 2013

The Lord's Prayer Part II - Talking to the Father about the Family, Part 51 of 61

TEXT: "In this manner, therefore, pray: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors. And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever, Amen" (Matthew 6:9-12).

IDEA: Evil is a person.

PURPOSE: To help listeners realize that “the Evil One” is a reality.

Do you think that a good Bible translation with good intentions might lead us to wrong conclusions by how they translate a word into English?

I. Look at how different translations bring a word into English.

The King James Version of the Lord’s Prayer reads, “deliver us from evil.” What does that translation lead readers to believe? Evil is an impersonal cosmic force, a thing of some sort.

The NIV, the New English Version, and the Living Bible render the same request as “Deliver us from the Evil One.”

So what? Is there any real difference between those two renderings?

II. Do you think most people today believe in God? Do they believe in a personal force of evil? Why not?

III. Satan is pictured in the Bible as a personal foe, not an impersonal force, but as a dreadful enemy.

In Matthew 6:13 he is called “the evil one.” Do people really think of him that way? We think of him as a comic character dressed in an outlandish costume.

He is a being of cosmic intelligence and stealth. In Matthew 4:1-11 he comes to Jesus who has fasted for 40 days and nights, to talk with Him in a perfectly reasonable manner as one rabbi to another. He suggests how to take the easy way to satisfy what Jesus wants to do anyhow (2 Corinthians 11:14).

His temptations of Jesus seem quite reasonable (Matthew 4:3, 6, 8).

IV. We need to pray that we would be delivered from him (Matthew 6:13).