DayBreaks for 04/26/12 – Snatch Us From Evil
“Deliver us from evil.” – The Lord’s Prayer
It is a very simple request, is it not? And it is a request that one would expect every single Christian to make. There are those who don’t believe evil exists. Those people were never kept in a crowded building in Auschwitz or gassed by a mad dictator who bombed the village with chlorine gas. They were never locked in a closet under a staircase. They were not blinded by their parents so that they’d make more convincing beggars as a way for the parents to get hand-outs from passers-by. But all those things happen. Evil exists.
But not all evil is that obvious nor blatant. Most of evil seems relatively tame by comparison, not something that would cause us to quake in our boots because the evil is so palpable. Perhaps that’s why Jesus put this in his model prayer for us – to help us realize that evil, while there may be degrees of it, is always still evil and insidious and in all forms, deadly and dangerous.
Writing in Leadership Journal’s Spring 2012 edition, John Ortberg made this observation: “Even though what we call “the Lord’s prayer” is familiar to Christians, there are parts of it we rarely dwell on. For instance, what it really means when Jesus says, “Deliver us from the evil one.” New Testament scholar Dale Bruner notes that Jesus uses an almost violent verb translated “deliver.” It means to snatch; it’s what a hand does when it seizes an object in considerable danger. The idea here is that the devil is constantly luring us into pits, snares of moral destruction, and being saved from them is beyond mere human willpower. Only God’s watching and snatching and saving can rescue us. Deliverance indeed.”
A parent would snatch a child from in front of an on-rushing, snarling pit bull or car, or pull them back from a precipice. It’s an almost violent act, motivated by urgency, and often, fear. Yet that’s the word Jesus chose to use when He asked the Father to “snatch us from evil.”
You see, we stand at the precipice and are often ready to take the leap and yield to the temptation, not realizing the great danger we are in. Jesus knows…and that’s why he used such a strong verb. I have a hunch we may all need to pray “Snatch us from evil” a bit more often than we do!
PRAYER: Father, snatch us back now and always from falling into ruin and disgrace, from bringing shame on Your glorious Name! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Copyright 2012 by Galen C. Dalrymple.
I Am 2 is now engaged in a project to provide temporary shelter, food, water and adult care to 37 orphans in Migori, Kenya. We are trying to raise up an army of compassionate people who will each contribute whatever they can – even $5-10 each, to help us provide care for these children until our partner in the project, BrightPoint for Children, can secure sponsorships for these 37 kids. If you want to contribute, follow this link and scroll down to find the “Donate” button: Help the 37 Migori Orphans
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