Matthew 6:13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil:

KJV Verse: 

Mat 6:13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.

Greek Verse: 

Literal Alternative: 

Also, you might not want to bring us as far as a testing. Instead, draw us toward Yourself away from what is worthless.

Interesting and Hidden Aspects: 

The meaning of the Greek words here are a lot more interesting than what we get in the normal translation. Most of the verbs in this verse are not words that Christ normally uses. This fact gives the translators some freedom to play with the ideas, which seems to be the case. This is true of much of the Lord's Prayer and of other popular parts of the sermon, for example, the Beatitudes.

This verse like many of the previous ones begins with the conjunction that is translated as "and," which can also be translated as "also."

The negative used here is the Greek negative of a subjective opinion, which is also used for prohibitions. The sense is that "you don't want" to do something, not that it isn't done. If it wasn't done, the objective negative of fact would be used. More about the Greek negative in this article.

The word translated as "lead" means "bring into" or "carry in." From these meanings, we get secondary meanings such as "introduce" and "to propose". Unlike many of the other verbs in the Lord's Prayer, it isn't in the form of a command, though it is translated that way in the KJV to match the form of the other verbs in the prayer. Its form is of something that "might" happen. It is a simple statement, not a request, about what the Father doesn't want to happen but the entire sentence comes across as a shy suggestion.

The word translated as "into" means "into" when it refers to a place but "up to" referring to time. However, here it seems to be referring to a limit, where the sense is "as far as".

The Greek word translated as "temptation" doesn't primarily means that. It means a "trial" as in a "worry" or "testing". The verb form means "to try" or "to test" something. The idea of "temptation" comes from the sense of a trial as testing but, in English, a "temptation" means something desirable. The Greek word has none of this meaning. Christ doesn't use this term but another Greek word to refer to court trials. Again, this is an uncommon word in Christ's teaching. In my search of the Greek, it only shows up in the NT and Christian writings afterward. This means that thw word may have been coined the word from the verb form.

The Greek word translated as "but" denotes an exception or simple opposition. "Instead," "except," or "rather" work well when the word isn't being used as a conjunction, especially when it begins a sentence.

The Greek word translated as "deliver" primarily means "to draw towards oneself" and "to draw away from danger." It is not the word usually translated as "deliver" in the new testament, as when Christ says he will be "delivered to the chief priests." That word means "to give over", this one doesn't. The form of the verb is where the subject acts on or for themselves, so the meaning is more clearly "Draw towards yourself" but the sense of "to draw away from danger" is still very important in this context. Again, this is an uncommon word for Christ. It is in the form of a command, which is also used for requests.

"From" is the preposition meaning "away from" a place and "from" when referring to a source.

The word translated as "evil" means "second-rate" or "worthless." This article explores it meaning in more detail. It is an adjective, but used here as a noun because it is introduced an article "the worthless" but it is singular so the sense is "what is worthless".

The last phrase, "For thine is..." appears in some Bible versions and not others but it does not appear in the best Greek sources that we have today.

Again, the concepts of "temptation" and "evil" in the KJV of this verse fit more into how Christianity is taught today than the concepts that Christ taught. His concerns focus on having the most productive, worthwhile life we can.

Greek Vocabulary: 

καὶ (conj) "And" is from kai, which is the conjunction joining phrases and clauses, "and," or "but." After words implying sameness, "as" (the same opinion as you). Used in series, joins positive with negative "Not only...but also." Also used to give emphasis, "even", "also," and "just."

μὴ (partic) "Not" is from me, which is the negative used in prohibitions and expressions of doubt meaning "not" and "no." As οὐ (ou) negates fact and statement; μή rejects, οὐ denies; μή is relative, οὐ absolute; μή subjective, οὐ objective.

εἰσενέγκῃς [uncommon](2nd sg aor subj act) "Lead" is from eisphero, which means "to carry in", "to bring in," "to contribute", "to bring into", "to introduce", "to bring forward", "to propose", "to carry with one", "to bring with," "to draw a break", "to drink [water]", "to sweep along [as a river]," and "to nominate."

ἡμᾶς (pron 1st pl masc/fem acc ) "Us" is from humas, which is the 1st person, plural, accusative pronoun.

εἰς (prep) "Into" is from eis, which means "into (of place)," "up to (of time)", "until (of time)", "as much as (of measure or limit)", "as far as (of measure or limit)", "towards (to express relation)", "in regard to (to express relation)", "of an end or limit," and "for (of purpose or object)."

πειρασμόν, [uncommon](noun sg masc acc) "Temptation" is from peirasmos, which means a "trial", "worry," "an experiment", "an attempt" and "a trial." The root word is a verb peirazo, which means "make a proof", "to try" "to test a person", and "to attempt".

ἀλλὰ (adv) "But" is from alla, which means "otherwise", "but", "still", "at least", "except", "yet," nevertheless", "rather", "moreover," and "nay."

ῥῦσαι [uncommon](2nd sg aor imperat mid) "Deliver" is from rhyomai, which means "to draw to oneself", "to draw out of danger", "to rescue", "to save", "to deliver", "to save from an illness", "to shield", "to guard", "to protect, "to draw back", "to hold back", "to check," and "to keep off."

ἡμᾶς (pron 1st pl masc/fem acc ) "Us" is from humas, which is the 1st person, plural, accusative pronoun.

ἀπὸ (prep) "From" is from apo, a preposition of separation which means "from" or "away from" from when referring to place or motion, "from" or "after" when referring to time, "from" as an origin or cause.

τοῦ πονηροῦ. (adj sg masc gen ) "Evil" is from poneros, which we discuss extensively in this page. In a moral sense, it means "worthless", "base," and "cowardly."


The word translated as "deliver" means "to draw towards oneself" and "to rescue from danger". 

The Spoken Version: 

He paused and said more lightly, “Also, You might not want to bring us to trial.”
Many laughed.
Returning to the baritone, he said sincerely, “Instead, pull us toward Yourself, away from the worthless.”

Mar 2 2017