The Vatican under Pope Francis will soon be implementing a change to the Lord’s Prayer, also known as the Pater Noster, switching out the line “lead us not into temptation” for the Francis-approved “abandon us not into temptation.”

According to the U.K.’s Express, the change to the Lord’s Prayer comes after 16 years of research by experts who found a mistake in the current translation “from a theological, pastoral and stylistic viewpoint.” It has been translated into literally hundreds of languages from the original texts in ancient Greek, Hebrew and Aramaic.

Last year around Christmas, Pope Francis spoke of his desire to update the “lead us not into temptation” part of the Lord’s Prayer, arguing that it portrays God in a false light. “A father does not lead into temptation, a father helps you to get up immediately,” the Pope said at the time.

“It is not a good translation because it speaks of a God who induces temptation,” he added. 

Pope Francis also asserted that other translations had already been changed to correct mistakes and to modernize the language. “The French have modified the prayer to ‘do not let me fall into temptation’, because it is me who falls, not the Lord who tempts me to then see how I fall,” he said.

The Daily Wire’s Michael Knowles explored why the original translation may actually be the correct one by adhering to the ancient Greek word peirasmos:

While peirasmos, the word for “temptation” in Ancient Greek, may be open to alternate interpretations, who precisely does the leading is not. Peirasmos connotes not only “temptation” but also “trial” and “testing,” as in “to test one’s mettle.” It is in all of these senses, two paragraphs before St. Matthew relates the prayer, that Jesus is “led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be [tempted/tested] by the Devil.” In both cases, while the Devil does the tempting, God leads the way to the trial.

Just why God might lead his faithful into temptation or testing poses a difficult theology question if not an outright mystery. 

Defenders of the apparent change say that the new language simply switches out the literal translations so that modern ears may not get the wrong impression. Jimmy Akin argued at National Catholic Register that the current translation already has a change from the original Greek text, so Pope Francis is actually doing nothing radical, as others have asserted:

The previous petition in the standard Catholic version reads “and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.”

That’s not what the Greek literally says.

It says, ‘And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors’ (Matt. 6:12).

Debts are a Semitic metaphor for sins, and the English translators have rendered this non-literally as ‘trespasses’ to make the concept clearer to English-speakers.

Luke did the same thing for Greek-speakers in his version of the Lord’s Prayer, where this petition reads, ‘and forgive us our sins, for we ourselves forgive every one who is indebted to us’ (Luke 11:4). 

Spanish-speaking Catholics have already seen a change to the Lord’s Prayer; the line ‘forgive us our trespasses’ to ‘forgive us our mistakes.’

A representative from the Episcopal Conference said that new publication of the Pater Noster will “renew the ecclesiastic community.”

“The Bishops intend for the publication of the new edition to be an opportunity to help renew the ecclesiastic community,” said the rep, reports Express. “Liturgical reforms are just a starting point. The renewal shall include ordained ministers, as well as the believers.”

“Developments like these are becoming increasingly crucial in the process of Christian initiation, in workshops and in proposals for the permanent training of the clergy,” the rep added.

Date published: 13/12/2018
Written by: Paul Bois
Feature image: Pope Francis
Article Source:


  1. People are to concerned about the literal meaning of words. The Lord fully understand our intentions and the meaning in our hearts. Our intention and response to adverse situations is what matters most. People always seek deeper meaning and understanding when the word of God is simple and plain for anyone to understand. Seek wisdom and understanding from the Lord first and everything will be revealed to you

  2. The asertion that “the word of God is simple and plain for anyone to understand” is so far fetched an idea as judged in the light the hundreds of denominations that have sprung up each with their own personal interpretation of the bible which in most cases contradict one another in doctrine, faith and morals. We know that the Paraclete cannot be schizophrenic by revealing contradictory messages to different persons of faith.

    In Acts 8:26-40 we read how the Ethiopian had one scroll of Isiaah and yet he needed help to make sense of the text in light of the life, death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.

    Thankfully our Lord did establish a Church with a petrine office with authority to “bind and to loose ” (Matt 16:17-19) and to teach (Matt 28:19,20). It is this same Church that compiled and ratified the canon of scripture at the councils of Rome, Hippo and Carthage  under pope Damasus. The Church gave us the bible and declared it as authoritative and Divinely Inspired. The bible came from the Church and not the other way round!

    I have from childhood been taught that the words “…and lead us not into temptation” in our Lords prayer, is our prayer request to God, to protect us from being tempted by the evil one who wish to separate us from the love of God the Father


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here