Matthew 6:13

What’s the best way to understand this phrase?

Matthew 6:9-13 wrote:9 Οὕτως οὖν προσεύχεσθε ὑμεῖς· Πάτερ ἡμῶν ὁ ἐν τοῖς οὐρανοῖς· ἁγιασθήτω τὸ ὄνομά σου, 10 ἐλθέτω ἡ βασιλεία σου, γενηθήτω τὸ θέλημά σου, ὡς ἐν οὐρανῷ καὶ ἐπὶ γῆς· 11 τὸν ἄρτον ἡμῶν τὸν ἐπιούσιον δὸς ἡμῖν σήμερον· 12 καὶ ἄφες ἡμῖν τὰ ὀφειλήματα ἡμῶν, ὡς καὶ ἡμεῖς ἀφήκαμεν τοῖς ὀφειλέταις ἡμῶν· 13 καὶ μὴ εἰσενέγκῃς ἡμᾶς εἰς πειρασμόν, ἀλλὰ ῥῦσαι ἡμᾶς ἀπὸ τοῦ πονηροῦ.
Stephen Carlson wrote:

Jonathan Robie wrote:That’s pretty much what I want it to mean, but I’m having a hard time seeing how εἰσενέγκῃς ἡμᾶς εἰς πειρασμόν can mean φύλαξον ἡμᾶς ἀπὸ τῆς ἁμαρτίας. The phrases εἰσενέγκῃς εἰς and φύλαξον ἀπὸ are near opposites.

Well, yeah, but the text has μὴ εἰσενέγκῃς εἰς …

Yeah, but that implies that God might actually lead us into temptation? Or perhaps testing …

Or am I reading something into this that is not there?

Two points must be added to Jeffrey’s article:

1. The meaning of the expression [Pater (hmwn )… kai ] mh eisenegkhV hmaV eiV (lead us not into …) and the object of the petitionI do not think we need dwell long on the question of which of the two alternative views of the meaning of [Pater (hmwn )… kai ] mh eisenegkhV hmaV eiV is correct. Two considerations make the former most likely. First, the verb employed within the expression (eisferein) seems generally to refer to enforced movement of some one or something from one place or sphere of activity to, but, notably, not into, another /20/. So a plea such as we have in Q 11:4b, that is, a plea not to be “led/brought into” (mh eisenegkhV … eiV …) something is a plea to be kept “outside of” or “entirely away from” that something /21/. Moreover, here the form of the verb is a negated aorist subjunctive in a prohibition. In this form and in this context it therefore carries with it a sense of how imperative the absolute avoidance of coming into any kind of contact with the object of eiV is. Thus, even should some air of the permissive or “allowative” hang about mh eisenegkhV, /22/ the meaning of the full expression is still “Keep us away from” not “preserve us from succumbing to” /23/. Given this, the petition should be viewed as a pointed and heartfelt request on the part of the disciples to be preserved from their ever coming into contact with the phenomenon or experience denoted by peirasmoV /24/.

This is rather short coverage of the phrase and without sufficient discussion of what Jewish prayers of the time were saying and how they were using similar wording.

This is still true after including footnote 22

[non-national keyboard converted to unicode for Greek, Hebrew added to latin because of right-to-left problems in this forum–rb] As I have noted above (n. 11), the argument for the idea that the Greek expression μη εισενεγκης ημας εις [πειρασμον], which has an unambiguously causative sense, would nevertheless have been taken by speakers or hearers of the phrase as having a permissive nuance, is usually grounded in two claims: (1) that μη εισενεγκης ημας εις is a translation of a Semitic original that ran very much like ואל תביאנו במסה w’l tby’nw [bmsh] (so Carmignac, Recherche, 396, arguing that Hebrew would have been the tongue in which Jesus prayed) or ולא תעלנן לנסיון wela’ tha`elinnan [lenisyon] (so Jeremias, Lord’s Prayer, 15, assuming Aramaic as Jesus’ prayer speech)— that is, a phrase with a negated hiphil (aphel) which, given the supposed force of this construction, presented the effect of what was in view in the phrase, and not the main verbal idea, as that which the negative modifies, and therefore had the sense “cause us not to [succumb to…]”; and (2) that the sense of the original Semitic saying would have been perceived in its Greek counterpart.

This didn’t even deal with ואל תביאנו לידי נסיון
‘don’t bring us to [the hands of sin … hands of guilt …] the hands of temptation’.
As in
ודבקני במצותיך,
ואל תביאני לא לידי חטא
ולא לידי עון,
ולא לידי נסיון,
ולא לידי בזיון
To ignore on the grounds that it shows up in the Talmud (Jeffrey did not specially argue this, he just didn’t deal with the usages) and that the talmud is post-NT is a fig leaf. The talmud is a repository of Jewish culture with ample ties to the Second Temple, Qumran, NT, et al. It must be sifted, not ignored.

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