Unfortunately the Pope is Wrong about the Lord’s Prayer. Let’s examine his recent edict and see why Jesus got it right and the Pope has it wrong.
In this recent NPR article (READ HERE), the Pope suggested we change the translation of the Lord’s Prayer that has been said the same way for 2000 years!
The Pope is Wrong About Lord’s Prayer
Did the Pope base this new translation on the underlying Greek words? NO! He based it on his own misunderstanding of what the Lord’s prayer is about! This is truly, truly a sad situation, when the leader of hundreds of millions attempts to change what the Bible says to suit himself.
Now in the Pope’s defense, the passage in question has been misunderstood by many in the past as well.
And do not lead us (Gk: eisphero) into temptation (Gk: pierasmos), but deliver us from evil (Matt. 6:13)
The Pope noted that both the English and the Italian feature this translation. His comments were: “It is not He that pushes me into temptation and then sees how I fall,” Francis said in Italian. “A father does not do this. A father quickly helps those who are provoked into Satan’s temptation.” The Pope has suggested a change to the Catholic liturgy to reflect his thinking on this. The new wording will be ‘Do not let us enter into temptation.’
Unfortunately, the Pope did not read Revelation Deciphered (ORDER HERE) which explains this passage , nor did he apparently consult any Greek linguistic experts for that matter. He simply assumed Matthew made an error in recording our Lord’s words. And that blatant disregard for God’s Word scares me.
Understanding the Petition
The Pope chose to change the translation of the Greek word eisphero (bring or lead), but didn’t consider changing the second Greek word translated “temptation” (pierasmos). There is zero question that eisphero means “bring,” so the prayer is definitively asking God not to bring us into pierasmos. With that in mind, let us look at what this second word means:
Cognate: 3986 peirasmós (from 3985 /peirázō) – temptation or test – both senses can apply simultaneously (depending on the context). The positive sense (“test”) and negative sense (“temptation”) are functions of the context (not merely the words themselves).
From this we see there two possible meanings to this word. The Pope is correct that God does not tempt (Jam. 1:13). However, he does test us. He tested Jesus:
Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil (Matt. 4:1).
This is a clear case of God leading into a trial! In fact this verse uses a verb form of pierasmos for “tempted.” It is exactly the same principle as God permitting Satan to test Job. What part of this doesn’t the Pope get?
Now is it okay to pray to be delivered from this type of trial? Of course! In the garden Jesus prayed to have the cup be taken away from him (but he submitted to the Father’s Will.) Paul prayed three times for the “thorn in the flesh” to be taken away (but he also submitted when this didn’t happen.)
End Time Meaning
What the Pope also misses is that the Lord’s Prayer is both a prayer for every day life AND a prayer for the end times! In it’s everyday context, it is a prayer for God not to test us (as Job was tested). It is also a prayer for him to not bring us into “the” test that is coming upon the whole world – the Wrath of God.
Look at the parallel nature of these three great Bible passages:
Trial or Temptation (pierasmos)
|Matt. 6:13||And do not lead us into temptation|
|2 Pet. 2:9||the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from temptation,|
|Rev. 3:10||I also will keep you from the hour of testing, that hour which is about to come upon the whole world|
Are all three discussing the same “trial” (pierasmos). Interestingly, in 2 Pet. 2:9, the word “rescue” is the same Greek word as we see in the second half of Matt. 6:13 which is translated there as “deliver” as in “deliver us from evil.”
The Lord’s Prayer and the Seals
When we pray the Lord’s Prayer are we are also praying for deliverance from the eschatological pierasmos, the Wrath of God.
The rest of the petitions of the Lord’s Prayer are in exact order of the seals as well.
Petition in Lord’s Prayer
|First (Deception by false messiahs)||Hallowed be THY NAME (only)|
|Second (Expansion of Antichrist kingdom by war)||THY Kingdom come|
|Third (Famine and Price Fixing)||Give us our daily bread|
|Fourth and Fifth (Martyrdom)||As we forgive those who trespass against us|
|Seventh||Lead us not into the trial|
|End of 70th Week||Thine is the Kingdom, the Power and the Glory|
So although this end time application is not the primary meaning of the prayer, Jesus in his infinite wisdom has built into the prayer this end time meaning. His saints will realize this as they pray during the distress of the 70th Week.
My greatest concerns with the Pope’s announcement are first, his disregard for the authority of God’s Word, and second, his disregard for advice. OBVIOUSLY, there many in the Vatican who understand this simple petition from the Lord’s Prayer and could have explained it to him. Without question, he must be acting as a lone gun, firing off official edicts without taking the advice of counselors.
This edict, in combination with last month’s denouncement of Trump’s acknowledgement of Jerusalem, certainly makes me question whether the Pope is Spirit-led. That is quite a sad situation for someone who leads the largest Christian congregation in the world.
We should all be praying for him and the Catholic Church at this critical time in Biblical history.