“Amen!” is a traditional gospel song made popular by the 1963 movie Lilies of the Field starring Sidney Poitier. It is one of those songs that gets stuck in your head much to your regret after a while. The song was recorded by many through the years including The Impressions, Elvis Presley, and Otis Redding. We have The Staple Singers version on vinyl (great album by the way).
“Amen” is a Hebrew word transliterated throughout the Bible generally meaning “So be it” or “I agree with you.” The New Testament often translates the word “truly” as when Jesus tells Nicodemus in John 3:3 “Truly, truly I say to you unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God” (ESV). The King James translates it as “Verily, verily” but it could be translated “Amen, amen I say to you …” The double emphasis by Jesus tells the hearer to listen up because what he is about to tell you is extremely important.
So Be It!
These days we use the word as a customary closing to a prayer like “… in Jesus’ name. Amen.” Originally, the word is tied to truth which is why the word is translated “Truly”. For example, when you hear truth like “As far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us” (Psalm 103:12 ESV) and the Holy Spirit quickens your spirit with this truth and your heart gets strangely warmed then the natural, or supernatural, reaction is to declare “So be it to me!” Or “Amen!”
The Holy Spirit, in effect, is asking you the question, “Do you want this truth in your life?” Your response “Amen!” seals the truth in your heart and glorifies the One who is able to fulfill the truth. “Amen” then is really a declaration of faith in the One who is faithful and an affirmation of truth as opposed to the lies that surround us. So the next time the preacher declares a truth that resonates in your heart shout “Amen!” and agree with God that his Word is Truth declaring “I agree with you, God! So be it in my life!”
Agree with God
This also happens when you are reading a book and the author reveals a truth that warms your heart. We encourage you to say “Amen” and agree with God. We get many testimonials from readers excited about the truth we are sharing in our books and blog. They read the truth and they know in their hearts that this is God’s truth about marital intimacy. In effect, they are saying “Amen!” with their testimonials.
Jesus said to his followers, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (John 8:31b,32) Say “Amen” to God’s truth and agree with God. Freedom is something to shout about.
Remember “Amen” is more than an add-on at the end of a prayer.
Happy New Year!
Blessings – Rene and Gloria