The Power of Affirmation: The "Meta-Yes" In Scripture
The Bible, Meta-States and the Neuro Semantic Model - Part II
In my last article1
we explored a biblical basis for the Meta-No pattern. As believers in Jesus
Christ we are taught to negate, to reject, and disown, to literally “say
No!” to all concepts, ideas, attitudes and frames that contradict and are
contrary to the will of God. We are to say “No!” to all that does not serve
and aid us in serving God. (Titus 2:11,12).
this article we will explore the concept of affirmation, or the Meta-Yes
according to Scripture and it’s importance in renewing the mind.
my first article I stated that during my Meta-states certification training Dr.
Bob Bodenhamer said, “All change in essence boils down to saying ‘No’ to
what you don’t want and ‘Yes’ to what you do want.” I believe this is
one of the most significant contributions that the field of Neuro-semantics has
made. The idea that beliefs are confirmed
that it is the affirming and saying yes to a thought that solidifies and
confirms it as a belief and thus as a frame is really quite simple and yet at
the same time quite profound. I believe that in the Scriptures we have a
foundation for this theory.
2 Corinthians 1:20 we are told “…all the promises of God in Him are “yes”,
and in Him ‘amen’, unto the glory of God by us.”
NIV bible translate this passage:
“For no matter how
many promises God has made they are all ‘Yes!’ in Christ and so through Him
the ‘Amen!’ is spoken by us to
the glory of God.”
of God promises are fulfilled in Christ. If we ask God,
“Is this promise fulfilled in Christ; is it true in Him?” God answer is
always “Yes! That promise is fulfilled and it is true in Christ!”
example we have in and through Christ redemption and forgiveness of sin
(Colossians 1:14). If you were to ask God “Are we redeemed in Christ, are we
forgiven in Him?”, God’s answer is ALWAYS “Yes! You are redeemed, you are
forgiven in Christ.”
you were to ask God, “When we were baptized, were we united with Christ in His
death and resurrection?” God’s reply would be “Yes! When you were baptized
with Christ you were united with Him in His death and resurrection!”
all that God promised is fulfilled in Christ, a fulfillment that God affirms and
confirms, that He says “YES!’ to. As a matter of fact the word translated,
as “YES” from the Greek is “NAI.”
It denotes the strong affirmation, assertion and confirmation of a thing3.
So God’s “YES” is an affirmation and confirmation of His word and its
2 Corinthians 1:20 states that we utter the “AMEN!” to God’s “Yes!”.
In regards to a promise God declares, “Yes that promise fulfilled in
Christ!”, to which we utter “Amen!”. What does it mean to utter or say
“Amen!” to something? And why must we through Christ say “Amen!” to
The Meta-Yes In Scripture
word amen in English and Greek comes from the Hebrew word amen (the word sounds
basically the same in all three languages). Amen literally means “It is true,
it is so, so be it, or let it be so”4. Biblically amen serves as a
formula and expression of confirmation
to the Encyclopedia
of Jewish Concepts
‘amen’ the listener associates himself with what has been uttered; he makes
it his own and is ready to conform to it. The people said ‘amen’ to the
commandments Moses gave them (Deuteronomy 27:15-26) thus agreeing to follow them
and accepting the consequences implied.”8
NIV Encyclopedia of Bible Words
states that “ To say amen is to identify with what is said and to confirm that
what has been said is true and binding.”9
to say “Amen!” to what one hears is to affirm
that which one hears, to confirm it as
true , to identify with it and make
it your own.
this sound familiar?
the Meta-states/ Neuro-Semantics model to say “Yes!” to an idea, thought or
concept is to confirm it and make it a belief. Your belief. It is to make it a frame of reference and with
repetition, your frame of mind. In
the same way, to say “Amen!” to God’s Yes of promises fulfilled in Christ
is to affirm and confirm His “Yes!” and the truth of those promises being
fulfilled. It is to identify with God’s “Yes!” and the truths affirmed and
make those truths Your own. 10
we say “Amen!” we are in essence saying “Yes!” to God’s “Yes!”.
Thus our “Amen!”
is a “Yes!”, i.e., an affirmation and/or confirmation that is meta
to God’s “Yes!” (Our “Amen!” is about
his “Yes!”). Our “Amen” is a Meta-Yes!
This to Our Lives
the context of the Christian faith and the Christian life to say “Amen!” to
God’s Word, to His Truths and promises is to have and exercise faith in God.
Said another way to have faith in God is to “Amen!” God and His Word.
to the Universal Jewish Encyclopedia
concerning the use of “Amen!” by the Jewish people:
“‘Amen’ is an
affirmation of a firm belief… and as there were many opportunities for
pronouncing it the rabbis were quick to note its psychological
value as a compact yet all inclusive declaration
of faith.” (p. 224)
Charles Hodge D.D. in his commentary on 2 Corinthians stated,
“To receive God’s
testimony concerning His Son, to say ‘Amen’, and to believe all
mean the same thing” (The
Second Epistle to The Corinthians, p. 23).
to “Amen!” God’s Word is to exercise faith in, or to believe God’s Word
may also be seen in the fact that the Hebrew word for faith, EMUNAH, is
derived from the Hebrew word AMAN
which denotes firmness and certainty. Depending on how its used Aman
can also mean, “to cause to be
certain,” “to believe” or “to establish.”11
also sheds light on and expands our understanding of a familiar passage of
Scripture: Romans 10:17
“So then faith comes
by hearing and hearing by the word of God.”
in Greek is akoe. This word refers to a responsive hearing not a passive one.12 In other words
when we hear the word of God there is a response that we are to have toward the
word we hear, and that response results in faith.
is the response we are to have? We are to respond to God’s word with “Amen!”,
with a Meta-Yes! As we respond to His word with an Amen! (Yes!), bringing
affirmation, confirmation, and identification to bear upon His word the result
is faith, i.e., a belief frame by which we live and move and have our being.
this means that our faith is merely or only a human effort or product?
borrow a phrase from Paul “God forbid!”.
Philippians 2:11,12we are told:
…Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God which
worketh in you both to will and to do if His good pleasure.”
Himself is at work within us, energizing, and motivating us to fulfill His will,
to say Amen/Yes to His will. We say Amen outwardly because God is inwardly
working within us and motivating us to utter the “Amen,” the “Yes” to
verbalizing of the Yes! or the Amen! is one aspect of our “working out” our
salvation, i.e., of carrying out and fulfilling what it means to be saved.
utter the Meta-Yes to the word of God
is not to substitute human activity
for Divine activity. Rather it is to cooperate with the Lord in what He is
working and doing in us.
how are we to utter our “Amen” to
the word and truth of God?
quote again from the Jewish Encyclopedia:
The idea seems to be¾ the amen must be spoken out loud and strongly for it to be effective. This accords with the Meta-states/ Neuro-semantic application of the Meta-Yes pattern where we are told to elicit and utter a strong intense “Yes” to a new enhancing belief in order to install it (Hall, Personal Mastery pp.156-163).
“Amen is [to be enunciated] with the full power of the voice.” (p. 492)
The church had adapted from the synagogue the practice of enunciating the amen with the full power-of the voice.” (Ibid)
Within the rabbinical literature it is stated:
“Amen should be recited with a strong, clear voice” (Berakhot 45a)
the Meta-Yes we have a very practical
means of exercising and applying faith in God. The insight and understanding
that the Meta-states model brings to the concept of beliefs, that they are
confirmed thoughts, helps us to understand why Christians often have difficulty
believing and making the promises and truths of Scripture our own.
we utter the Amen! the “Yes!” to the truth we hear it is not confirmed in us
as our truth. It has not become our
own; it is not yet our frame.
once we utter strongly and congruently Amen or Yes to God’s truth it, becomes
our truth; it becomes the frame by which we live.
what truth of Scripture would you like to have as your operating frame? What
principle or biblical concept would you like to utter an Amen or Yes to?
“I can do all things
through Christ who strengths me” (Philippians 4:13)?
“…. We are more
than conquers through Him that loved us.” (Romans 8:37)
“Peace I leave with
you, My peace I give unto you…” (John 14:27).
Have you uttered Amen/Yes strongly, intensely and congruently to such Biblically enhancing beliefs? Do you want to? Would it serve you to have such beliefs as your frame of mind? Are there beliefs that you need to say “No” to first? Those beliefs that keep you from serving God and following Him fully¾ do these beliefs serve you? Do they help you to walk in the image and likeness of God and fulfill your spiritual potential?
you ready to say “No” to those limiting frames? Then Do It! And remember¾ as you say “No” to limiting frames and Amen/Yes to enhancing ones, keep
in mind that God is working in you and with you.
He is empowering you to say “No” to those limiting frames and
Amen/Yes to the enhancing ones (that’s a frame by the way).
the Meta-Yes and the Meta-No we have in our hands two powerful and effective
tools for renewing our minds and bringing them into alignment and harmony with
the Mind of God.
James, the Father of American psychology, said,
“Tell him to live by yes and no – yes to everything good, no to
– Go forth and change!! (Amen!)
Michael L. The Power Of Negation:The Meta-No In
2Hall, Michael, L. The Structure Of Excellence p.158
3"NAI" Strong's Concordance Greek Dictionary #3483: Thayer's Greek-English Lexicon #3483.
4Strong's Concordance Hebrew Dictionary #543; Vines Expository Dictionary of New Testament Word P. 45 (1952).5Encyclopedia of Jewish Concepts p. 46.
6"Amen" Encyclopedia of Bible Words, p. 38.
7Encyclopedia Of Jewish Concepts p.46; Encyclopedia
Of Bible Words p. 38
8Encyclopedia Of Jewish Concepts p. 46
10Hall, L. Michael, Frame Games : Persuasion Elegance Winning The Games Of Life pp.167-168;170
11Aman Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament, pp. 51, #116
12Dunn G D, James
The Theology of the Apostle Paul, P. 361, n. 45.
13Pollan M. Stephan and Levine, Mark. Turning No Into Yes, p. 3 All Biblical Quotes are from the King James Version unless otherwise noted.
About the Author:
Michael L. Davis is an ordained minister, business consultant, trainer and coach. His Biblical teachings focuses on
The Renewing of the Mind, the Semitic background of the Christian faith,
the study of the Bible in the light of the Cultural, Linguistically and Historical context in which it was written.
PO BOX 3000-469 Chino, Ca. 91708
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