Shouting out “Amen” in Church

I was at Church a few weeks ago, and the pastor said something particularly poignant. It was an unpacking of scripture that resonated deep within me, and my first instinct was to say “Amen!” But I did not, of course, as I would be the only one and would receive curious looks from everyone around me. I wish there were more churches that did this though.  It certainly seems to be a biblical practice that it is used all throughout the New and Old Testament, where the congregations respond in such a manner. I don’t think is done much though in the churches in this community, as far as I know.  There is one pastor in town who when he preaches, will ask rhetorically “Amen?”  several times a sermon after he makes certain statements, but I’m not sure if he expects anyone to answer, as no one ever does.

I think most pastors would like that- where the congregations could verbally encourage him when he’s firing on all cylinders and preaching his heart out. When he’s feeling the holy spirit heavy on him and he’s preaching the word and boldly proclaiming the scriptures and the mysteries of the faith, that some people would shout out “Amen”.

I’ll be getting the opportunity in a few months to visit a Church in the United States that does that very thing, who say things like “Amen.” That’s good pastor.” and “Preach it”. I can’t wait to go, as I’ll get a chance for the first time to join in with them, and amen my little heart away. I think it will be a special experience.

What do you think? Does anyone here miss the Amen? What would your pastor do if you shouted it out?

 

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“And the Levites shall speak with a loud voice and say to all the men of Israel: 15 ‘Cursed is the one who makes a carved or molded image, an abomination to the LORD, the work of the hands of the craftsman, and sets it up in secret.’
“And all the people shall answer and say, ‘Amen!’
16 ‘Cursed is the one who treats his father or his mother with contempt.’
“And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
17 ‘Cursed is the one who moves his neighbor’s landmark.’
“And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
18 ‘Cursed is the one who makes the blind to wander off the road.’
“And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
19 ‘Cursed is the one who perverts the justice due the stranger, the fatherless, and widow.’
“And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
20 ‘Cursed is the one who lies with his father’s wife, because he has uncovered his father’s bed.’
“And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
21 ‘Cursed is the one who lies with any kind of animal.’
“And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
22 ‘Cursed is the one who lies with his sister, the daughter of his father or the daughter of his mother.’
“And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
23 ‘Cursed is the one who lies with his mother-in-law.’
“And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
24 ‘Cursed is the one who attacks his neighbor secretly.’
“And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
25 ‘Cursed is the one who takes a bribe to slay an innocent person.’
“And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
26 ‘Cursed is the one who does not confirm all the words of this law by observing them.’
“And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’”

Deuteronomy 27:14-26.

6 thoughts on “Shouting out “Amen” in Church

  1. I am totally comfortable with saying amen or good word during a sermon, and have a few other ppl in our church do that too. But there is this one guy at our church that does it ALL the time in a pretty obnoxious way… For somethings that don’t even make sense to say “amen” to… So I think there has to be a balance. But I am a big advocate for genuine expression of agreement and praise if something in the service is really resonating with you!

  2. you’re right that people can use the occassion for attention and self-glorification. i used to be part of a hardcore charismatic church and people would shout out tongues during the service instead of amens. i found that particularily unnerving.

  3. I have never attended a church that didn’t use ‘amens’ during the sermon. I would be bored if I did. I constantly use them at my church because my pastor preaches straight from the Bible and is super encouraging and stands for truth.

  4. I am of course super jealous. What sort of church do you attend? I have attended some great churches that didn’t have the audible amens, but it definitely is a personal taste that i have acquired. I think though too that it might serve as part of an important personal confession. When we agree out loud with the the pastor, we are confirming the word and that strengthens our own convictions.

  5. i think it is disruptive and wrong and we certainly are not following what the Lord said in 1st or 2nd Corinthians 14 tha t said le all thongs be in order and and loud disruptiver chirch is not in order.

    • I don’t have a problem with the occasional “amen” if something is really inspiring. We have an older guy in our church, though, who “amens” almost EVERYTHING. He also tries to finish the preacher’s sentences if he’s reading a verse from the Bible. If he doesn’t know the verse well, he just mumbles along (like some people do when they’re singing along with a song they don’t know). When he’s not doing that, he says “Well”. What does that mean, anyway? I love the man and he’s a sweet soul, but there are times when I really want to thump him on the head and say “shhh!” I just want to listen and concentrate on what’s being said.

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