Amen is the last word of God. It is the last word of God declared in His eternal counsel. It is the last word of God to us in Holy Scripture. To everything in the Bible, from its “In the beginning” to its concluding “the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all,” to every word of history and prophecy, providence and miracle, blessing and cursing, law and gospel, exhortation and promise—the faithful, true, and everlasting God adds one final word. Amen!
Amen is a Hebrew word that means “it shall truly and certainly be” (H.C., L.D. 52). This word is very familiar, for it is one of the few Hebrew words used in the Greek N.T. and retained in almost every translation of the Bible no matter the language. Dutch, Germans, Italians, Russians, Spanish, Swahili, Koreans, Filipinos, and others the world over know the word amen. Among the egregious errors of recent Bible translations is that they strip God’s Word of many amens. In these, our Lord’s Prayer, the four gospels, and many epistles have no concluding amen.
Rebellious, unbelieving man despises God’s amen. To the history and miracles of God’s word man says, “Not so.” To God’s prophecies and promises he declares, “It shall not be.” Man always wants the last word. As far as he is concerned, Darwin and Dawkins, Kant and Dewey, Franklin and Jefferson, Hollywood and Nashville, get the last word. And even in churches where amens loudly ring out, Pelagius and Arminius routinely are given the last word by preachers adding many “ifs” and “buts” upon which God’s amen depends. A-men becomes Ahh!-men!
God’s children love God’s amen. And by the almighty and gracious power of God, they make His amen their own. Amen is the last word of faith. Amen expresses faith’s certainty that everything God has revealed in His Word is true. Amen expresses faith’s confidence that whatever God promises in His Word—especially the remission of sin, everlasting righteousness, and salvation—is mine, by grace, only for the sake of Christ’s merits (H.C., L.D. 7). Therefore, to all the commands of God (I John 5:21), the promises (Rev. 22:20), prophecies (Jer. 28:6), history (John 21:25), blessings (Rom. 15:33), and even cursings of God on the disobedient (Deut. 27:15-26), the believing church says, “Amen.” No ifs, ands, or buts. By faith, amen is the last word of every sermon, and of all our praise, worship, and thanksgiving of God (Neh. 8:6). Amen is the last word of our prayers (Matt. 6:13) and confession. Rightly, amen is the last word of the Apostles’ Creed, Nicene Creed, the Canons of Dordt, and Belgic Confession. And, appropriately, the last word of God explained in the Heidelberg Catechism is amen.
God speaks this last word by Jesus Christ. For Jesus is the Amen of God. He is the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God (Rev. 3:14). In Him all the promises of God are yea and amen (II Cor. 1:20). And this word is certain, for of Him, and through Him, and to Him are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen (Rom. 11:36). Jesus speaks and seals these promises of God with His own amens. “I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen” (Matt. 28:20). “I am He that lives and was dead; and behold, I am alive for evermore. Amen” (Rev. 1:18). “Surely I come quickly. Amen” (Rev. 22:20).
Above all, therefore, faith desires, expects, and says amen to God’s eternal glory and blessedness in Jesus Christ. By faith every believer yearns that the Lord be blessed forevermore, and from everlasting to everlasting. Amen (Ps. 89:52; Ps. 41:13). Faith anticipates His glorious name being blessed forever and the whole earth being filled with His glory, amen and amen (Ps. 72:19). Faith exclaims amen, it shall certainly be, that unto God be glory in the church by Jesus Christ in all ages, world without end. Amen (Eph. 3:21). And when Jesus returns, and that last word of God is spoken, the angels, the whole creation, and the church dressed in robes washed white in His blood will say only this: “Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and honor, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever. Amen” (Rev. 7:12).