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Is It Proper to Use 'Amen' to Close a Prayer (Matthew 6:13)?

Some have questioned the use of the word "amen" at the end of a prayer because an Egyptian god was called Amen (the supposed personification of air or breath and represented by a ram or a goose). However, we can find no evidence to link the Hebrew word amen—meaning "truth" or "so be it"—in any way to this or any other pagan deity.

What we do find is that the inspired writers of the Bible were led to use this Hebrew word frequently. Jesus Himself included the word "amen" as part of the model prayer He gave for all Christians (Matthew 6:9-12). Surely that is endorsement enough!

What about the claim that those who wrote the Bible got this word from the Egyptians? It would appear that if anyone "borrowed" this word from another people, the Egyptians got it from what was once the pure language spoken by everyone before the building of the tower of Babel. Was this a deliberate counterfeit? In the Bible we find that Jesus Christ is called "the Amen" (Revelation 3:14).

How does the Bible define this word? Notice, Jesus is "the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness." Its use here, directly connected with the word "true" and emphasizing the truth for which Christ stands, conclusively shows its meaning as used in the Scriptures.

If our own use of the word is based on the Hebrew, we need not fear that we are sinning when we use it (however, see Romans 14:23, if it is a matter of conscience). Of course, if we attribute existence or power to some mythical god in our minds as we use it, we are using it wrongly and not the way those who wrote the Bible did.


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