Meditations on the Lord’s Prayer – Part 11 of 12

Temptation of Christ by Michael Pacher

Continued here are Father Schouppe’s meditations on the Lord’s Prayer, based on the second manner of prayer taught by St. Ignatius of Loyola.

“And lead us not into temptation”

“Our Divine Master dictates this petition to warn us of our weakness in the spiritual combat. ‘Watch ye and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit, indeed, is willing, but the flesh is weak’ (Matt 26:41).”

“He makes us pray thus to fill us with confidence, and to teach us that the enemies of our souls are subject to the power of his Father: ‘He will not suffer you to be tempted above that which you are able’ (1 Cor 10:13).”

“He wishes by this prayer to put us on our guard against the occasions of sin, and to warn us to fly danger, as much as it depends upon ourselves; ‘because he who loves the danger will perish in it’ (Sir 3:27).”

“We do not ask to be freed altogether from temptation, because it enters into the designs of Providence that we should be tempted. ‘My son, on entering the service of God prepare thy soul for temptation’ (Sir 2:1).”

“Temptations cannot injure us if, inspired with courage and confidence in God, we fight after the example of Jesus Christ. That is why, when St. Paul prayed to be delivered from the temptations which afflicted him, the Lord replied: ‘My grace is sufficient for thee, for power is made perfect in infirmity’ (2 Cor 12:9).”

“Temptations or solicitations to evil cannot come from God; but He permits them for just reasons: to prove our virtue, to increase our merit, to humble us, and make us feel our weakness. We ought to submit to his designs, begging Him at the same time, not to allow us to yield to temptation.”

“The causes of temptation are the flesh, the devil, the world and its scandals, and too often man himself, who seeks or exposes himself to them.”

“We shall not fall—(1) if we fly the occasions of sin and watch over our senses and our hearts; (2) if we are always armed by prayer and Christian mortification; (3) if when attacked by the enemy we resist promptly, with energy, courage, and perseverance.”

“To him that shall overcome, I will give to sit with me on my throne, as I also have overcome; and am set down with my Father on his throne.” (Rev 3:21)

Quotations from Francois Xavier Schouppe, An Easy Method of Meditation (Dublin: M. H. Gill and Son, 1883).

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