The only time Jesus taught on worship is found in John 4. In meeting a Samaritan woman at a well, Jesus deflected her religious questions about the location of worship and directed her toward the four most important words ever used in defining “true worshippers.”
Jesus said, “true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth…” (John 4:23, NKJV). What does it mean to worship “in spirit and truth?” How can we, who love Jesus, walk in and experience true worship; worship that glorifies God in our lives?
How do we worship in spirit? Is this some kind of out-of-body experience or trance? Kind of spooky. No, rather it is when our spirit connects heart to heart with the Spirit of God. The furnace of the fire of worship is our own spirit or heart. The fire in the furnace is the Holy Spirit. When the furnace of our spirit is lit up with the fire of the Holy Spirit, then we are worshipping in the spirit. The heart of the matter is the matter of the heart!
How do we worship in truth? To worship in truth happens as we fill our mind with right thoughts about God. Thoughts that come from the Word of God fill our minds with truth and then, we have the fuel of worship. The fuel of biblical worship is the character, majesty and beauty of God.
Worship begins in the mind. It starts with great thoughts about the truth of whom God is. But, worship that truly blesses and honors God doesn’t stop with just thoughts about God, even accurate ones. These ideas about God must inflame our affections, awaken our spirit and stir our emotions. Worship, in spirit and truth, should intensify our love and joy in Christ.
Growing in Spirit-empowered worship,
Steve Holt D.D. MA