In our most recent sermon from John 4 in our series on The Woman at the Well, we considered Jesus’ words about “true worshipers” that “God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” While much of our sermon and service are meant to unpack those ideas, there is so much more to say!
As we have focused on the Jesus’ conversation with the woman at the well, we have recognized the importance of seeking: God is seeking worshipers, and this woman is seeking all the wrong things. She is seeking relational intimacy in her five marriages and promiscuous love. She is seeking soul satisfaction, the water from which we will never again thirst. But as Abraham sent for Rebekah at the well as a bride for his son, Isaac, so we see in John 4 that God the Father is seeking worshipers for the True Bride, the Bride of Christ as Jesus meets this woman in her spiritual need.
How does this affect how we see worship? Mark Dever of 9Marks Ministries has a great teaching time on this topic:
Dever shows that when we think carefully about God’s Word, some of what we take for granted about worship is actually really challenging. For example, we all know that worship is about God, but when we think how that rules out so much human preference or tradition, it is shocking. Or how about distinguishing between public and private worship? These kinds of important biblical principles will shape churches to be healthy about worship, but not having these principles in place can lead to spiritual malaise.
We have thought about this in similar ways in “The Joys of Corporate Worship.” You can find more worship resources here.
What personal practices do you need to change as you think about how you worship God? What ways do you need to worship God in church that makes for “true worship” in “spirit and truth”?