“God’s Affirmation” 2 Corinthians 1:18-22
Who knows what a “PK” is? Here’s a hint: It’s a acronym for something!
A “PK” is a Preacher’s Kid! Well, I read a little story about a “PK”... that I’d like to share with you. The little boy’s dad was preaching one Sunday... at the end of the service the preacher offered a prayer, as was his traditional way of ending the worship service. The little boy knew that this prayer was the only thing standing between him and freedom... between him, lunch and playtime! But the PK’s father was kinda wound-up... and his prayer just went on-and-on! And the boy was getting more and more impatient with every passing minute... until he could stand it no longer... and he blurted out, “Say Amen Daddy. Say Amen!”
Of course there are basically two types of “Amens.” We tend to say “Ahh-men” at the end of prayers and some responsive readings, and at the end of the Doxology and Gloria Patri... so to say “Ahh-men” signifies conclusion... it’s done, it’s finished. Kinda like the words “The End” on the last page of a book or just before the closing credits of a movie. There’s the “Ahh-men” that signals the end.
Then there’s the “Amen” that’s spoken in agreement... usually when a preacher says something that resonates with you... something you with which you concur. This second type of “Amen” is an affirmation... it’s an verbal acknowledgment of approval.
Paul told the church at Corinth: “For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God.”
Jesus is the physical embodiment of God... and the fulfillment of all of God’s promises. Jesus is God’s “Yes” to our deepest and most honest and genuine prayers. When God the Father sent Jesus the Son, He was stating his agreement... his affirmation... that we were worth saving.
Of course, it all begs the question, “What are those promises? What are some of those promises God has fulfilled in Jesus?”
Well... for starters... God promised he would be faithful... and He’s true to his word. He promised through Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, David... and through Jesus to never leave us or forsake us... to be our God as we are His people. And God has proven faithful.
Of course, you have to admit that our “track record” shows that we’re far less faithful to God than He is to us. Even before the Ten Commandments were ever etched in stone, God’s People were proficient in being faithless. Just thumb-through the Old Testament... and you’ll see how over and over again God’s People would break the covenant... they’d seek other gods... worship idols... even abandon God’s Word.
But through it all God remained faithful. There were times when God allowed the people to feel consequences of their choices, but God never abandoned His people. There were times that God punished Israel, but God never cast them off. There were times when God pruned Israel back to its stump, but God never uprooted it completely.
God has always been faithful... and Jesus is the ultimate fulfillment of God’s faithfulness. God promised a Savior, a Messiah, one who would deliver the people from bondage... but (much like us today) Israel looked to political or military power for their salvation/their deliverance... instead of looking to God.
And many missed God deliverance when it finally arrived because they were looking elsewhere. C. S. Lewis said, “Human history is the long terrible story of man trying to find something other than God which will make him happy.” But despite that... God was & is faithful... God keeps his promises. Jesus is God’s “yes”, God’s affirmation that His People were/are worth saving... Jesus is God’s “Amen.”
God also promised peace, didn’t he? We all search for, and long for, true peace... lasting peace. But so few find it, because they’re looking for peace in all the wrong places, too.
God offered peace... and through Christ He gave it. When we hear God’s voice... God’s calling... and we respond to Jesus... and follow Him as our Lord and Savior... He gives us peace. A peace that’s beyond all understanding. In Jesus God said “yes” to the promise of peace... and Jesus is still the final, or the ultimate source of peace. He’s the “Amen” of peace.
But God also promised us Hope. NOT worldly hope... in this world people “hope” to win the lottery... in other words, they don’t really believe it will ever happen! But God’s Hope’s not some fanciful wishful thinking! God’s Hope is the blessed assurance of Christ himself!
The whole of creation, every single man, woman and child is hopeless apart from Christ (that’s Reformed Theology 101)... because we’ve all sinned and fallen short of the Glory of God.
So, what did God do? God sent Christ to bring us his blessed assurance... His hope. God’s Word tells us that Christ is the propitiation for our sins. In Jesus, God said "YES" to the promise of hope... Jesus is the “Amen” of hope.
Of course, God also promised us Love. The One who loved us first, and loves us most, loves us with an everlasting love... according to the scripture. One of the most basic, foundational needs of every single person... is to love and to be loved. People are starving because of lack of love.
In Jesus, God said "YES" to the promise for Love. Jesus came into this world to show us God's love. He comforted the weary, he healed the sick, he fed the hungry... and then he stretched out his arms and said “I love you this much” then he died on the cross. Jesus is God’s “yes” of love. Jesus is the “Amen” of love.
Of course, God’s promise to be faithful... his promise of peace, and hope and love... are all fully expressed in his promise to forgive us, and save us. Jesus is God’s “yes” of forgiveness... Jesus is God’s final “Amen” of salvation.
Paul was right - “All God’s promises find their ‘yes’ in Jesus.” And we know it’s true... God’s Word testifies to it’s truthfulness, and we are witnesses to that fact... having experienced God’s promises to be true and trustworthy ourselves!
But to just know the truth isn’t enough. To even speak in agreement with the truth... to affirm the truth... to say “Amen” to the truth... isn’t enough.
It takes living the truth to make it effectual, and real. You and I have to live it...
Jesus gave his life for us... He left the glory of Heaven to die on a cross. And because of that you and I have been called to live the promises of peace and hope and love and forgiveness...
“For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God.”