“But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him. God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.”John 4:23-24
Have you ever thought about how Jesus views worship? Have you ever considered that the reason Jesus came to earth—to die for our sins and live again—was because He was seeking worshippers? In John 4, Jesus gave some of His most profound and direct teaching about worship to the most unlikely person—the woman at the well.
He unpacked some radical ideas about how He was in the process of transforming the entire paradigm of worship. The “hour is coming, and is now here” when He was about to bring a “new and living way that He opened for us through the curtain, that is, through His flesh” (Hebrews 10:20). Jesus explained that with this direct access to God, we can experience worship that is not bound by time or place. You can worship anytime, anywhere!
Jesus explained that God is seeking true worshippers. Anything that captures our heart’s affection above God Himself is false worship or idolatry. He wants to hear from those who love Him with all their heart, soul, and mind.
True worshippers also worship in spirit. The same John who recorded the story of the woman at the well was later exiled to the Isle of Patmos and shared in Revelation 1:10 that: “I was in the spirit on the Lord’s day, and I heard…” He well understood this posture of worship where our mind’s attention is attuned to God in such a way that we are able to commune with Him, and we hear Him when He speaks to us. He also knew the importance of regular and faithful attention to this practice.
Paul also gave additional insight in Romans 12:1, urging us to “present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.” Words like “present” and “sacrifice” have Old Testament-style worship implications. Our whole life becomes our sacrificial offering to Him. There is an aspect of worship that is living for God each and every day. A. W. Tozer said, “If you’re not worshipping God on Monday the way you did the day before, perhaps you’re not worshipping him at all.”
True worshippers also worship in truth. We worship the God revealed to us in Scripture, but we also worship Him in the way He has prescribed. If your perception of God or approach to Him differs in any way from what has been revealed in His Word, it is false worship. If you add or subtract anything from what the Bible teaches, it is vain worship (Matthew 15:9). You must know and obey His truth to be a true worshipper.
Think about it: Jesus made the journey into the time-space continuum arriving on earth in human form. He lived a perfect life, died a substitutionary death for all mankind, and rose again on the third day. Because He lives…we can and should worship!