In his “Confessions,” Saint ­Augustine admitted he had prayed, “Lord, make me chaste, but not yet.” Sen. Elizabeth Warren would understand.

She wants to be the Democrats’ 2020 nominee, but doesn’t necessarily want to be the front-runner, at least not yet. She’d rather watch Joe Biden have the honor — and the target on his back.

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Biden will once again be the ­piñata at Thursday’s debate because the best way for any of his nine rivals to gain ground is to beat up on him, as Sen. Kamala Harris proved in the first debate.

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But Warren is the one to watch this time. Most national polls have her second, with two recent ones showing her trailing the former vice president by just four points.

She is drawing by far the largest crowds and is focused, energized and organized. Biden, on the other hand, had a terrible week, with a growing realization in the party that his flubs and memory lapses are not passing problems.

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