amen (281) is transliterated from Hebrew into both Greek and English. "Its meanings may be seen in such passages as <Deut. 7:9>, `the faithful (the Amen) God,' <Isa. 49:7>, `Jehovah that is faithful.' <65:16>, `the God of truth,' marg., `the God of Amen.' And if God is faithful His testimonies and precepts are "sure (amen)," <Ps. 19:7; 111:7>, as are also His warnings, <Hos. 5:9>, and promises, <Isa. 33:16; 55:3>. `Amen' is used of men also, e. g., <Prov. 25:13>.

"There are cases where the people used it to express their assent to a law and their willingness to submit to the penalty attached to the breach of it, <Deut. 27:15>, cf. <Neh. 5:13>. It is also used to express acquiescence in another's prayer, <1 Kings 1:36>, where it is defined as "(let) God say so too," or in another's thanksgiving, <1 Chr. 16:36>, whether by an individual, <Jer. 11:5>, or by the congregation, <Ps. 106:48>.

"Thus `Amen' said by God `it is and shall be so,` and by men, `so let it be.'"

"Once in the NT `Amen' is a title of Christ, <Rev. 3:14>, because through Him the purposes of God are established, <2 Cor. 1:20>.

"The early Christian churches followed the example of Israel in associating themselves audibly with the prayers and thanksgivings offered on their behalf, <1 Cor. 14:16>, where the article `the' points to a common practice. Moreover this custom conforms to the pattern of things in the Heavens, see <Rev. 5:14>, etc.

"The individual also said `Amen' to express his `let it be so' in response to the Divine `thus it shall be,' <Rev. 22:20>. Frequently the speaker adds `Amen' to his own prayers and doxologies, as is the case at <Eph. 3:21>, e. g.

"The Lord Jesus often used `Amen,' translated `verily,' to introduce new revelations of the mind of God. In John's Gospel it is always repeated, `Amen, Amen,' but not elsewhere. Luke does not use it at all, but where <Matthew, 16:28>, and <Mark, 9:1>, have `Amen,' Luke has `of a truth'; thus by varying the translation of what the Lord said, Luke throws light on His meaning."

From Notes on Galatians, by Hobb and Vine, pp. 26, 27.

(from Vine's Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words)

(Copyright (C) 1985, Thomas Nelson Publishers)

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