“Christ does not force our will, He only takes what we give Him. But He does not give Himself entirely until He sees that we yield ourselves entirely to Him.”
St Teresa of Avila
As a Catholic, when we receive Holy Communion, we come up to the altar and then either kneel or bow before the Presence of Jesus. Then, as we take the Communion the Priest or minister will say, “Body of Christ” and we respond, “Amen”. It is a holy minute in our lives as we take within us, the body and blood of Jesus Christ. When I am going up to Communion, I hear the others saying, “Amen” and depending on whether they pronounce amen with a short a or a long a, it sometimes sounds to me as if they are saying, “I’m in”.
“But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us. We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed.” (2 Corinthians 4:7-9)
Either way we say it, it would be true. Amen simply means, “So be it.” Yet, our response to the word of God made flesh is no simple trivial matter. It is a powerful acclamation of faith to our savior, Jesus. Anyone who would approach the altar of God and say, “Amen” should never be Sunday-only believers. This response to God is a declaration to believing all that the word of God teaches us. It is our defining moment in life that surpasses the notion of time and space and delivers us to the authority of Christ. I would pray that all who say, “Amen” would be on fire with love of God.
“Always carrying about in the body of the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. For we who live are always delivered to death for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh.” (2 Corinthians 4:10-11)
There are a number of people I know who live and breathe their faith. I hope to be like them. For them, it is not a matter of once a week or an occasional thing. It is the ardent desire to be possessed by the Holy Spirit, living with the blood of Christ flowing through us and doing the will of God. That is what the real “Amen” means. To seek the Lord our God with all our hearts and all our minds and all our strength and to love our neighbor as ourselves. We have found the pearl of great price and there is no turning back. We have placed our hand to the plow and forward we must go. It must reach a point where we no longer live for ourselves but for Christ in us. Amen, count me in Lord.
“I know your works; that you are neither cold, nor hot. I wish that you were either cold or hot. But because you are lukewarm and are neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of my mouth.” (Revelations 3:15-16)
Nearly seventy times in the gospel’s, Jesus begins his teaching with “Amen lego humin” or “Truly, I say to you,” as a way to declare his divinity. (In John’s Gospel, the word amen, is always doubled.) In stark contrast to the words of the prophets, “Thus says the Lord”, Jesus will say “Amen, I say to you”, asserting his authority even over the Jewish interpretations of the law. This is why the people were so engaged when He spoke because no one spoke like him. The strength of his Godly authority was in every amen.
“Amen, amen, I say to you, unless one has been reborn anew, he is not able to see the kingdom of God.” (John 3:3)
“Amen I say to you, certainly, until heaven and earth pass away, not one iota, not one dot shall pass away from the law, until all is done.” (Matthew 5:18)
“Again, you have heard it said to the ancients: ‘You shall not swear falsely. For you shall repay your oaths to the Lord.’ But [amen] I say to you, do not swear an oath at all, neither by heaven for it is the throne of God nor by earth, for it is his footstool, nor by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the great king.” (Matthew 5:33-35)
We have found our purpose in life and we relish the inner peace and joy that it gives to us. What a great and awesome God we serve who brings us home and calls us his children. Amen, I’m in.
“I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now life in the flesh I live b faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” (Galatians 2:20)