Devotion – August 19, 2015 – Worship in Spirit and in Truth

john4_24God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth.
—John 4:24

Where can we worship God?

When should we worship?

What music should we use?

There are a lot of things we concern ourselves with about worship which aren’t actually Biblical or truly important.  In the passage from John above the Samaritan woman at the well had just asked Jesus whether the Samaritans were right to worship on their mountain or the Jews right to worship in the temple.  Jesus responds,

“a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem.”

Today, we often hear questions about whether certain instruments should be in worship or what kind of music is played.  Should we use video?  But that’s not what worship is about.

We don’t have to worship in a specific geographic location, in the sanctuary of a church, or even in a building at all.  We can worship with hymns, songs, or the spoken word.  We can worship at the beginning of the week on Sunday morning, at the end of the week on Saturday night, or any time in between.  We can worship corporately or by ourselves.  What is important is that we worship in spirit and in truth.

Worship in Truth
We worship in truth through the Word of God.  That is why we read Bible passages during the service and why we preach and our sermons are focused on the Word, not just some popular topic of the day or the musings of the pastor.  But it’s not just in the Bible readings that we receive the truth, there is truth throughout the liturgy.  There is truth in the confession of our sins and the hearing of our forgiveness.  There is truth in eating of the bread, His body, and drinking of the wine, His blood.  There is truth in lyrics of our hymns and songs.  There is truth throughout the corporate worship service because the Word is throughout the our worship services and even in personal worship, the Word should be throughout our personal times of devotion.

Worship in Spirit
We worship in spirit as the spirit is the one who works faith in us.  He is the one who reveals our sins leading to repentance and comforts us in our brokenness.  He intercedes for us before the Father when we pray.  He opens our minds to understand the Scriptures and He transforms us through the Word.  The spirit is at work throughout our worship.  In fact, we cannot truly worship except by the Spirit.

One thing you’ll notice about worshiping in spirit and in truth is who is primary one at work.  Worship is about what God is doing.  Yes, we respond by confessing our sins, praising Him, etc. but worship is primarily about what God is doing for us and in us.  God comes to us in His Word.  God forgives us.  The Spirit transforms us.  Jesus offers us His body and blood.

Heavenly Father,

May our worship services and our personal devotions be times of worshiping You in spirit and in truth.  We come to You as beggars, but we do not leave wanting.  You come to us with forgiveness and life.  You refresh us and strengthen us.  You transform us into a new creation.  You love us.  So, we thank and praise you for all that you have done and continue to do for us.

Amen

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