Read: 2 Corinthians 1:19-22 |
A story from the old west tells of a preacher, who lived near the Grand Canyon. The man of God was trying to sell his horse. One day a potential buyer came to the Church for a test drive – I mean test ride. The preacher said, “Before you start, you should know that this horse only responds to church talk.” Go is ‘Thank God’ and stop is ‘Amen.'” So, the man gets on the horse and mutters, “Thank God” and the horse starts to trot. The man then shouts, “Thank God, Thank God” and the horse starts to gallop. Suddenly, he sees a cliff looming ahead of him and the man yells “Whoaa, Stop” to no avail. Then he remembers to yell “Amen!!!” The horse stops just at the edge of the cliff. The man wipes the sweat from his brow and says, “Thank God!”
The word “amen” has a special meaning and significance in the Bible. It is one of the few words in the Bible kept intact and translated letter by letter from Hebrew, to Greek, to Latin to English and many other languages. Thus, it has been called the best known word in human speech. The Hebrew word for amen is derived from the root word “aman”, which means “surely, indeed, truly”.
Amen is asserting when used at the beginning of a statement (John 3:3, John 10:1) as a point of emphasis – “Thus says the Lord”. Jesus used the term frequently when He wanted to get the attention of His audience. He used the tense we translate as “surely, surely or verily, verily” over 25 times. We can adopt His approach for Amen by saying, “Amen, Thank God for this new day you have granted me.”
Typically, when we hear a sermon or a statement we can identify with in Church, we consent or attest with it by saying “Amen!” (Luke 24:53 KJV; Revelations 22:21). In fact, Paul wrote in I Corinthians 14:11-19 that the term should not be used flippantly. Based on these verses, we find that the early Church had a practice of saying “Amen” at the end their service. In the modern Church, saying, “Amen” has been replaced with well-intentioned applause. Applause shows appreciation to the preacher, but Amen points the praise to God.
As we say our prayers each day (Matthew 6:13 KJV) and petition God, we say “Amen” reflexively. “Amen” deserves our reverential focus with an anticipation of what God can do. Amen should never be a question mark Amen – “Help me on my job, Amen?” Instead, by praying on His promises we can turn it into an affirmation of His will in our lives – “Thank you for my job, let me learn from my trials. I know you have plans for me. Let me stay in your will as you expand my borders, Amen!”
Jesus is the Great Amen (2 Corinthians 1:20; Revelations 3:14)! Jesus Christ is God’s Amen to the Majesty of His Law; He was also “the Amen” in all His teachings; He is “the Amen” in all His promises; He is Amen to His Righteousness. Jesus Christ is “the Amen,” not only in us, but “the Amen” for us. [Charles Spurgeon, The Amen]
The Great Amen constantly asserts because He is the Logos – The Word. He consented with God by leaving the celestial heights and golden streets of heaven to walk, live and die on our dark, dank and dusty streets. Then He arose and ascended to His rightful place after atoning for our sins. He petitioned for us and His crimson blood is still washing away our sins and allowing us to approach the golden throne of grace.
Thank God and Amen, Amen and Amen again for Jesus!
Footnote: This series will explore the common Praise words and phrases we say and establish their origin and deeper meaning.
1.Discover – What did you discover new about the term “Amen”?
2.Develop – How can you share what you learned with other believers?
3.Demonstrate – I want the “The Great Amen”, to say “Amen” to what I do for Him!
A. What areas of your life do you feel Jesus is saying Amen to?
B. What areas of your life do think Jesus would withhold His Amen?
C. What are you willing to do about those areas of your life?
D. This week say “Amen” with more intentionality and fervor.