Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The Amen is the End

Have you ever stopped to wonder why we always end our prayers with “In Jesus’ name, amen?” The phrase has become this trite little farewell to God after prayer that I doubt many of us have given much thought.  It’s like saying goodbye after we get off the phone. 

“Uh God, I gotta go.  Dinner is getting cold.  
In Jesus’ name, amen.” Click.

Jesus said, “if you ask anything in my name, I will do it” (John 14:14), so we ask everything in His name.  “Bless our food”, “Bless my dog”, “Bless grandma”, “Bless the president”, etcetera, all in Jesus’ name. 

Yet do we ever stop to think about the name we’re whipping out like a no-limit credit card on Heavenstore.com? 

Are we so quick to forget that at the name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father? (Philippians 2:10-11)

Where is the respect due our Lord in using His name so arbitrarily?  I’m not saying not to ask in the name of Jesus, just don’t throw it out in vain without a second thought about who’s name you're using.

And as far as the “Amen” goes, if you’ve done a word-study on “amen” or have ever heard a sermon on it before, you probably already know it means “truly, surely, or it is so.”  But have you ever looked at the word in context?  It never comes after “In the name of Jesus” at the end of a prayer.  The word is sometimes used as an agreement, but it is almost exclusively found after blessing or praising God, like in the Lord’s Prayer: “For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.” (Matthew 6:13

This use of the word is something I just discovered while writing this post, which is very different then what I intended to write, and in discovering this use of the word, it seems very nearly blasphemous to say it after blessing our food, our dog, our grandmas, even our president.  In fact in Revelation, Jesus says, “To the angel of the church in Laodicea write: The Amen, the faithful and true Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God, says this . . .” (Revelation 3:14).

He calls Himself “the Amen”, which shouldn’t be that shocking since He calls Himself “the Truth” in John 14:6, but it’s like the double whammy of using the Lord’s name in vain at the end of our trite little prayers.  Amen isn’t the end of a prayer; the “Amen” is the End, as in the “Beginning and the End.”

Here’s what I propose.  Let’s stop praying like the God we speak to isn’t real and doesn’t care how we talk to Him, and let’s start praying with fear and trembling, awe and respect, and most of all love for Jesus Christ and the Father who loved us enough to send His Son.

To God Almighty be all glory and honor forever and ever, Amen.

1 comment:

HisFireFly said...

and may I add my own AMEN!!

Prayer is not merely words spoken -- it's conversation with the Lord Almighty -- that involves alot of listening too!


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