The Spirit and the Bride say, “Come.” And let the one who hears say, “Come.” And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who desires take the water of life without price.
18 I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues described in this book, 19 and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this book.
20 He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming soon.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!
21 The grace of the Lord Jesus be with all. Amen – Revelation 22:17-21 [ESV]
One of my favorite movies is The Hunt For Red October. Based on the Tom Clancy novel by the same name, Sean Connery plays a Russian naval officer who defects to the United States, during the cold war, with his super-secret submarine (Red October). As the plot plays out there is need to verify his intentions to his US Navy counterpart. He is asked to respond with a ping from the sonar of his sub. When he calls for a ping, he is questioned. This was an unusual move. But he makes it clear: “One ping, Mr. [I don’t remember the man’s name]. One ping only.” By that his intentions to defect are communicated to the US Navy captain on the nearby sub. And the story continues to unfold.
Here we have a final word – a single ping, if you will – at the end of the whole book. “Amen.” While some of the ancient Greek manuscripts omit the “Ἀμήν” (Amen), many modern translations include it. And it is found in other ancient Greek manuscripts. The word means truly. It’s the exclamation point of all that John has seen through this revelation of Jesus Christ to him. “Yes, yes, it shall be so,” as Martin Luther puts it. All of the foregoing truths, prophecies, pronouncements, praises, and proclamations are in fact most certainly true.
We have covered the hymns of praise in the Revelation of Jesus Christ to John. From hymns of praise to the Lamb who was slain and now reigns, to praise to God for his righteous retribution, to praise for the salvation given to the faithful, one chorus after another has been lifted up in praise to God. The book of Revelation is a celebration of the ultimate victory of God, Jesus, the power of the Holy Spirit to inspire faith, and a vindication of righteousness and faith.
In this last chapter there comes an invitation, a blessing, and a verification of all that goes before. The Ἀμήν is the verification – the One Ping Only – of Jesus’ words, promises, and warnings.
- Will there be a Last Day? Ἀμήν
- Will Jesus reign forever on his throne? Ἀμήν
- Will those who hear and heed his invitation to receive the water of life enjoy that life-giving refreshment eternally? Ἀμήν
- Will those who have done such terrible things to God’s people through the ages be brought to justice? Ἀμήν
- Will those who acknowledge their sins and repent of them, acknowledge Jesus’ true and proper reign over all things be saved? Ἀμήν
- Will every tear be wiped away in the life of the world to come? Ἀμήν
- Will every sickness, sin, and all of Satan’s reign be brought to naught? Ἀμήν
- Will there be joy forever with all those gathered before the Lamb of God for he has taken away the sin of the world? Ἀμήν
- Will our faith in Jesus be vindicated and will we be deeply thankful for his steadfast love and faithfulness? Ἀμήν
- Will the grace of our Lord be with you? Ἀμήν
Truly. It shall be so!