'?' Or '!' - Cathy Hopkins
Punctuation. How very important it is. We use these symbols to make sure the reader 'hears' our voice in a written sentence. Are we asking a question, making a simple statement, or emphatically saying something? The punctuation we use can change everything. For example: “All of this is for you!” or “All of this is for you?” have very different meanings.
When it comes to the Word of God it is most important. Let’s look at the verse regarding the promises of the Lord in 2 Corinthians 1:20, “For as many as are the promises of God, they all find their Yes [answer] in Him [Christ]. For this reason we also utter the Amen (so be it) to God through Him [in His Person and by His agency] to the glory of God.” (AMP).
The New Living Translation states it this way “For all of God’s promises have been fulfilled in Christ with a resounding “Yes!” And through Christ, our Amen (which means “Yes!”) ascends to God for His glory.
Holy Spirit through Paul wanted us to hear the force behind this word showing that His promises are real and to be relied upon. And these translations bring out the need for our agreement with God regarding His promises, our Amen.
He has given us His Word, it is imperative that we stand with Him. Believe and speak in agreement with His Words of Promise. Redemption comes by believing and speaking (confessing) with our mouth the Word of God. Is this not how we are born again, taken from death to life in Him? (Romans 10:8-11) The principle remains for all aspects of our journey with the Lord.
The English word wicked originated from an old Anglo-Saxon word ‘wicker’ which means to twist. The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘wicked’ is pronounced raw-shaw. It means to be wrong by making trouble, or twisting things with “wicked work”. The Greek word that is usually translated as ‘wicked’ is pronounced pon-ay-ros. It means to be hurtful by “twisting” what is good… So could we not say the enemy, wicked as he is, twisted the exclamation point into a question mark? From this: ! to this: ?. After all, isn't this his age old strategy: to get the children of God to question His Word?
“The serpent was the shrewdest of all the wild animals the LORD God had made. One day he asked the woman, ‘Did God really say.......?’” (NLT)
Did God really promise He will always love me? Did God really say He will never leave or abandon me? It is necessary that we know who God is and who we are in Him. It is extremely important for each of us to choose which punctuation mark we will place at the end of God's promises to us, '?' or '!'.
Remember how Simon Peter responded in the Gospel of John: “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.” (John 6:68)
This is my life verse. This truth has kept me from quitting when I just didn't seem to be getting anywhere and felt like such a failure in my life, as a parent, a wife, a friend, a child of God. However, no matter what I felt, I knew there was no one and nowhere else to turn. Still, He showed me I needed more and spent much time this past year working within me to build a stronger place of trusting Him, of being fully convinced of His faithfulness and His promises. He firmed up my foundations to know more than ever before that I can rest securely in His promises; believing that in Him I will never be put to shame or be disappointed.
He showed me I must stand firmer in this than ever before - even when I don't understand (or I should say especially), when I don't see how the situation can work out, when I don't know or understand what He is perfecting and molding in my life and in my heart. He has the big picture. He sees the end from the beginning. And if I know who He is and that I can trust Him, nothing that happens around me, or even within me, can move or distract or change this certainty. The enemy will not be able to change the Yes! to Yes?
Ask Holy Spirit - your teacher and guide into all truth - to show you where you may need to firm up the foundations of His “Yes!” and your “Amen”. He is trustworthy to do so.
And please know, my brothers and sisters, no matter what you are experiencing in this world, He has family around you to stand with you, and hold up your hands when you have no strength of your own. We all need someone to help us at certain times in our lives. I believe that is what Healing Rooms Ministries is all about. I know I have found this to be true. Standing alongside each other, encouraging our trust in a trustworthy Father, and standing shoulder to shoulder, or even allowing someone to rest while we fight in their place. It takes the whole family, the whole body together, to be the army of God.
Let us stand firm on the foundation of His promises and link arms together to be the unbeatable force He says we are - to bring in the harvest of souls in these days of great glory. Let us take that exclamation point that has been twisted into a question mark, by the enemy of God, and make it straight once again.
Yes! and Amen!
Cathy Hopkins is on the prayer team and the IAHR Assistant at Spokane Headquarters in Spokane, WA.