Forever and ever, Amen…
Questions for Reflection
- Why does the Lord’s Prayer end with praise?
- What does it mean to say amen?
- How has this prayer changed the way you think of praying?
- How can you work this entire prayer into your life?
- What might be the benefits of praying it regularly?
Closing in Worship
When you hear someone pray, you will almost always hear them end with the word amen. It’s so common most of us do it without ever considering why we do it or what it even means.
I grew up memorizing the Lord’s prayer with the traditional closing. It goes like this: “For Yours is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever, amen.”
Sometimes that concluding expression is called a doxology. That means it’s the final word of worship. We close this prayer with a word of worship. We worship God. God, You are king; Yours is the kingdom. God, You are powerful; Your will be done. Yours is the glory; You are worthy of our worship and worthy to be hallowed in my life.
This closing doxology is a way of turning our requests into statements of worship.
The Final Amen
And then we finish with amen.
There is a scene in the Old Testament book of Chronicles where all of Israel was gathered together to listen to God’s word being read and to participate in worship. They listened as the speaker spoke these words, “praise be to the Lord the God of Israel, from everlasting to everlasting.”
It reminds me of those closing words of worship from the Lord’s prayer. In Chronicles, when the people heard those words of worship, they responded by speaking the word amen.
Amen is a Hebrew word that we have added to our language. Sometimes you will hear it translated as “let it be.” I like to think of it as a state of yes.
Yes. Let it be. Amen.
We close our prayer like those first worshipers did as well, affirming that we believe it. We say yes as a statement of affirmation. This is how we will live. This is how we will see the world. This is what we will believe.
You see, amen is not a formal way of saying goodbye at the end of a conversation with God. It’s not our way of wrapping things up.
Our amen is a way of holding on to everything Jesus has taught us to pray. It is a way of driving a stake in the ground and witnessing to our confidence in God and our commitment to what has been prayed.
We leave not having concluded but anticipating how God will fulfill His promises. We leave, anticipating the fulfillment of His Word. We go with our past, our present, and our future placed before Him.
Yes, this is what is true. God’s kingdom is coming. God is powerful. God be glorified.
Let it be. Yes.
So what comes next?
I would encourage you to memorize this prayer and begin to pray it, but not just as some formal religious practice. Work this prayer into your life.
Pray each word of it. Pray it daily. Meditate on each line. Discuss it and study it. This is a prayer to build your life on.
This is a prayer you bring your life into alignment with. This is how God has taught us to pray to Him. So we work this prayer into every part of our life as a way of working God into it.
I have no doubt that you will soon discover God answering this prayer in all kinds of ways, but you will also find something else. You will find yourself being changed by it.
You will find your will conforming to his. His kingdom in you and around you. Daily bread. A new forgiveness. Deliverance. A heavenly Father.
Forever and ever.