Every good Christian knows if you do not end your prayers with, “In Jesus name, Amen,” God probably won’t hear you. Of course I am being factitious. But when traditions become, well traditions, they eventually become routine, and then their purpose becomes assumed, and finally, forgotten. So what is the purpose of these four words at the end of our prayers? Does it give a better chance at getting a favorable answer? Is it like abracadabra? Or just a nice signature, like when writing a letter: “Sincerely yours, Berry White.”
In Jesus Name.
Every time we say these three words at the end of our prayers we are proclaiming the good news of the gospel. Ephesians 3:12 says that through Jesus, “We have boldness and access with confidence through our faith in him,” before the throne of God (emphasis mine). Without Christ, we are sinners, enemies of God (Col. 1:21), under his wrath (Ephesians 2:3). We have no access to God on our own. When we say “In Jesus Name,” even at the dinner table, we should be reminded that through Christ, we have the right to talk to God. He is our Father. Jesus has given us “the right to become children of God” (John 1:12). In John 14:13 Jesus says, “And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son.” (emphasis mine). So do not leave out the most important part of your prayer. Through Christ, and Christ alone, you have the right to approach God and ask for anything, or even simply to thank him for the food he has provided for you.
Amen is kind of an obscure one. If you do a search for “Amen” in the Bible it shows up in a strange variety of places. For example: “‘Cursed be anyone who dishonors his father or his mother.’ And all the people shall say, ‘Amen’” (Deut. 27:16), or, “Blessed be the Lord forever! Amen and Amen” (Psalm 89:52), or “For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen” (Romans 11:36). Ironically, it is least often used in the Bible at the end of a prayer, but there are examples like, “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit, brothers. Amen” (Galatians 6:18). The word means “truth” or “it is true.” (That is the reason some people say Amen during the sermon at church). In Revelation 3:17 Jesus himself is called “The Amen.” He is the embodiment of truth, “And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). Everything he says it truth. That is why Peter said, ” You have the words of eternal life” (John 6:67). Very often when Jesus would teach he would begin with, “Truly, Truly, I say to you…” And some versions rightly translate it, “Amen, Amen, I say to you…” Say Amen when you hear or pray or read the truth of God. The most common use of the word Amen in the Bible is right after a declaration of God’s glory like, ” To him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.”