Thursday, December 15, 2005

Amen! and Amen!

In this church we say Amen together in many places. We pray at the opening of the service as we praise God. At the end we say, Amen. We mean to say, "We love God and offer Him praise. We agree that this is our duty and our joy." We then sing a song to praise Him. Again, as a congregation we say, "Amen." We mean something more now. We agree with the words of the song. We Amen the song in agreement to abide by its words, to proclaim what God has done and to declare our allegiance to Him.

We confess our sins and say, "Amen." We admit, as a body, that we have fallen short and are in need of the cleansing blood of Jesus Christ. We pray in Jesus name, Amen. Our Amen says, "Truly, our salvation is in Him and no other." We read the scriptures and say, "Amen." In this, we confess the Word of God as the Word of God and swear our allegiance to it, understanding that obedience brings blessing, disobedience brings cursing. Our Amen leaves us without excuse. We sing more songs and again say Amen. The Amen ties us to the duties of the Psalms. Men pray on the behalf of the congregation, representing you before God. We say Amen, admitting that we are covenantely tied to him as he prays and agreeing with him in his prayers.

We hear the Word preached and pray at the end. We have heard the Word of God and are required to obey it. Again, we are aware of the conditions of the covenant. Blessing for obedience. Cursing for disobedience. And we say, Amen. We commune with God and one another at the Lord’s table. We say, Amen. We declare that He is ours and we are His. We declare that we are brothers and sisters in Christ. We say, Amen. This is true and no man can separate us from Christ or from one another in Christ. We conclude with praise to God in the doxology and Amen. And blessing from God in the benediction and Amen.

Saints, this word Amen has much meaning. Be aware of it each time you say it. Mean it when you say it. This means that we should be practiced at our Amens. We should be hearty and sincere in them. We should wake up to the reality of them. So, let us say Amen and mean "truly Lord, I swear, I agree, I promise to abide, I am Yours." And when we say, Amen, together, let us not do it just out of habit, or just because our liturgy calls for it. Let us mean it. Let us get ourselves ready for it. Let us listen to the words of the songs because we know we are going to have to Amen. Let us listen to the prayers and the preacher and the reading and the blessing, for we know that we are going to sign on to it all with ‘Amen!’.

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