God’s Favorite and Most Repeated Word
Midway through a tactful explanation aimed at preventing misunderstanding among the Corinthians, a single word acts as a trigger to Paul’s exuberance in ministry. He is grammatically plodding along, putting his verbs and nouns in proper order; then suddenly one word quickens the pace. That word is yes.
When Silas and Timothy and I proclaimed the Son of God among you, did you pick up on any yes-and-no, on-again, off-again waffling? Wasn’t it a clean, strong Yes?2 Corinthians 1:19
Yes is God’s favorite and most repeated word. Mostly it’s spoken in its Hebrew form, amen. The Hebrews said amen where we would say yes. The word can be understood in its richness only in relation to God. The church knows God as the One who says yes to us, who establishes us and makes our being firm and secure.
Whatever God has promised gets stamped with the Yes of Jesus. In him, this is what we preach and pray, the great Amen, God’s Yes and our Yes together, gloriously evident. God affirms us, making us a sure thing in Christ, putting his Yes within us. By his Spirit he has stamped us with his eternal pledge—a sure beginning of what he is destined to complete.2 Corinthians 1:20-22
This encouragement and many others are published in The Message Devotional Bible. Excerpted from sermons given by Eugene Peterson, “God’s Favorite and Most Repeated Word” reflects Peterson’s desire to share God’s generous heart with his congregation.
God says yes to you. He doesn’t divide you up into two parts, the acceptable and the unacceptable. He doesn’t say yes to your soul and no to your body. He doesn’t say yes to your good moods and no to your bad moods. He doesn’t say yes to your sunshine and no to your rain. He doesn’t say yes to you on Sunday and no to you on Monday. In him it’s always yes. Because he made you and he likes what he made. He loves you, and he enjoys what he loves. He saves you and never gives up in discouragement as he works with you to restore you to wholeness in Christ.