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顯然，我們禱告時說出「阿們」，並不單出於自身那善於變遷的真誠，也出於我們對主耶穌的確信，「因為神的一切應許，在基督裡都是『是』的」（林後一 20上）。已故的楊牧谷牧師為這節經文作的翻譯，傳意甚佳：「無論神的應許是多麼的多，在基督裡都是可兌現的；為此緣故，我們藉著祂說『阿們』來回應，好叫神得著榮耀。」英文聖經的翻譯更加直白：「For no matter how many promises God has made, they are "Yes" in Christ」（NIV）。
Saying "Amen" through Christ
Rev Arnold Chow
We conclude our prayer with "Amen." "Amen" can be translated as "let it be so" (or "誠心所願" in Chinese), meaning that the prayer has been said with all earnestness of faith and intensity of desire. But as the term is so frequently used, it is often considered as an ordinary phrase, or can even become a pet phrase. We find some people saying amen all the time.
"Amen" appears in the four gospels a total of 101 times. But the term is spoken only by Jesus! In the Chinese Bible, the “Amen” said by the Lord Jesus is invariably translated as "實在(truly)" to express that the truth revealed is trustworthy and important.
The Lord Jesus is "the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the ruler of God's creation" (Revelations 3:14). The Lord is about what is true and real – He is the truth. He takes us beneath the surface, giving us a glimpse of the spiritual reality about people and matters.
Obviously, when we say "Amen" in our prayer, we do not do so only out of our personal limitations or a volatile earnestness. We do so because of our conviction in the Lord Jesus. "For no matter how many promises God has made, they are 'Yes' in Christ. And so through Him the 'Amen' is spoken by us to the glory of God" (2 Corinthians 1:20). The Chinese translation of this verse by the late Rev. Arnold Yeung captures its meaning well. It expresses that no matter how many promises are made by God, they can be fulfilled in Christ. For that reason, we respond with "Amen" in Christ to give God glory. The NIV translation of the first part of the verse is also straightforward.
We can say Amen through Christ when we pray in the name of Jesus because the Lord Jesus is really the fulfilment of God‘s will and salvation. Jesus has accomplished it all. So when we turn our eyes upon Jesus, we can be convinced that all the numerous promises of the Heavenly Father will be fulfilled.
In addition, the Lord Jesus is the "Yes" in terms of the fulfilment of the promises of God. There is nothing demanding to man in this respect. Otherwise the Lord will be downgraded to a genie for the fulfilment of dreams, acting in accordance with human wishes. Therefore, our prayer is not for the satisfaction of our needs, nor is our prayer solely about our daily necessities.
Our prayer is to take us back to the will of God, to say to Him that we are willing to accept heavenly rules over our lives and are determined to be the people of God. We are willing to act in accordance with the truths verily proclaimed by the Lord Jesus and by that means live out the ultimate goal of life, which is to magnify God!
During the first quarter of the Thanksgiving and Prayer Year, the NPAC Family will study selected passages about the “Amens” in the four gospels and explore their theological meanings. We will listen to the truths that the Lord Jesus told us verily. May the true light of Christ illuminate our prayer lives in the new year, and teach us to remember that prayer is "saying 'Amen' through Christ."