The Seventh Petition
Traditional: But deliver us from evil.
Contemporary: And deliver us from evil.
When he came to the other side, to the region of the Gadarenes, two men possessed by demons came out of the tombs and met him. They were so fierce that no one could pass that way. Suddenly they shouted, “What have you to do with us, Son of God? Have you come here to torment us before the time?” Now a large herd of swine was feeding at some distance from them. The demons begged him, “If you cast us out, send us into the herd of swine.” And he said to them, “Go!” So they came out and entered the swine, and suddenly, the whole herd stampeded down the steep bank into the sea and drowned in the water. The swineherds ran off, and, going into the town, they told the whole story about what had happened to the men possessed by demons. ~ Matthew 8:28-33
What is meant by this Petition? Answer. We pray in this petition, as in a summary, that our heavenly Father would deliver us from all manner of evil, whether it affect the body or soul, property or character, and, at last, when the hour of death shall arrive, grant us a happy end, and graciously take us from this world of sorrow to himself in heaven.
Who's your favorite superhero?
As a kid I was a big fan. I loved Batman and Spiderman. And as an adult, I love the Marvel heroes, especially Iron Man.
But Wonder Woman was always my favorite. From the 1970's TV show to the recent Woman Woman movies. There was a scene in the first Wonder Woman movie that stayed with me: she is crossing No Man's Land in the first world war, on her way to save a village from German occupation and destruction. She is facing evil without thinking about her own safety. (knowing really that German weapons are no match for her).
We love movies where evil is faced and destroyed. We want saviors - ones who are stronger than the forces of evil.
Evil, death, sorrow, destruction come in many forms. We don't tend to blame it on the devil so much now as we often know where our worries and sufferings come from: sometimes from leaders, sometimes from crime, sometimes from nature.
Sometimes even from those who are nearest to us.
But we also have the promise that evil does not have the last word. Jesus may not be a superhero using weapons and superhuman strength to save us.
But through the compassion, love, and faithfulness of the one we call Lord, we know that God is continually meeting us, holding us, redeeming this world, and offering us hope and life.
A Prayer by Martin Luther: Dearest God and Lord, strengthen and uphold us in your pure, precious Word through Jesus Christ our Lord, and help us to show and live our thanks with our fruits of faith to your praise and thanks forever. Amen.