A few weeks ago I posted about Snow White and the Inappropriate Kiss, a story about how something that was once deemed a classic romantic tale can nowadays be seen as a non-consenting sexual advance. It was kind of an, “Oh, yeah!” moment and I had a similar one today.
When I was at school, we had assembly every morning. I actually remember very little of those assemblies, except our PE teacher once telling is how he went and knocked on the door of a house that leans to one side near where I live, to ask the owners why it was leaning. Most people would already have known, but that wasn’t how he worked. The only other thing I remember was having to sit on the floor cross legged in junior school and I couldn’t do it then, either.
But anyway, we had to recite the Lord’s Prayer as part of morning assembly which means I can still remember it now. One of the lines is, “lead us not in to temptation”.
As the Pope pointed out last week, leading to temptation is Satan’s “department”. Why would God do it?
When I was reading about this I found the amazing paragraph at First Things about why we shouldn’t change the Lord’s Prayer:
And yet, and yet: The words of Jesus are clear. The original Greek is not ambiguous. There is no variant hiding in the shelves. We cannot go from an active verb, subjunctive mood, aorist tense, second person singular, with a clear direct object, to a wholly different verb—“do not allow”—completed by an infinitive that is nowhere in the text—“to fall”—without shifting from translation to theological exegesis. The task of the translator, though he should be informed by the theological, cultural, and linguistic context of the time, is to render what the words mean, literally, even (perhaps especially) when those words sound foreign to our ears.
All the big words!
Because I was reciting without thinking for all those years, and while we’re on the subject of finding alternative meetings, I started to think about why temptation has such negative connotations. Surely you can be tempted to be a good person and I fail to see how being tempted by pancakes can ever be a bad thing!