Gregg DeMey 0:07
Good morning friends, and welcome to Elmhurst CRC's daily dose of the Word of God. It's Friday, October 28. And Sunday is coming to us, Gregg to may serve as Lead Pastor at Elmhurst CRC. And this week in worship, as we close our series on the Apostles' Creed will focus on this little word at the end of the Creed, two syllables that have made it around the world. Amen.
Gregg DeMey 0:28
Amen or Amen was originally a Hebrew word. It's a word that appears many times in the Old Testament as a confirmatory response, especially following blessings. We still use this commonly in America today; somebody says something good, you're like, Amen. The use of Amen has been generally adopted in Christian worship as a concluding word for prayers and hymns, Amen. And an expression of strong agreement. Preachers love it when they hear people respond and confirm with an amen. It's a word like hallelujah that has made it directly from the Bible into virtually every language on the planet. Having said that, in English, the word amen has brought two primary pronunciations. Amen or Amen. I've said them both already in the short devotional. It means the same thing either way, but back in the 1500s, there was what linguists call the Great Vowel Shift in English and lots of O's became A's in common English thus, Amen still kind of formal became Amen maybe slightly more informal. So in Handel's Messiah, we sing, Amen. In American gospel music, pretty much always. Amen. In worship this week, we will be singing a great American gospel song, Amen. The congregation pretty much repeats a musical Amen. Then over and over again, while the song leaders offer phrases true of Jesus Christ, see the little baby there in the manger. Then they crucified Him, Jesus, our Savior; He rose on Easter, each phrase punctuated with an amen. There are two different versions that you can listen to links in the show notes. One is by Johnny Cash from the 1960s — so good. The other is from a 1963 movie called Lilies of the Field, in which the African-American actor Sidney Poitier, his character, is building a chapel for some European immigrant sisters or nuns. They get to sing the song together, with Poitier taking the lead. It's incredible. This film was strongly instrumental in popularizing the song beyond the American South, and we're still singing it today.
Gregg DeMey 2:36
Let's pray. Lord God, to your word, to your promises to the leading of Your Holy Spirit, to the presence of Jesus, to the truth of your word, we say yes and amen.