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The Heart of Worship: Worshipping God in Spirit and in Truth

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Text: John 4:4-24 (primarily vv20-24)

Introduction: Last week we looked at the three reasons we worship God, and it was really a foundational message for what we are about to move into. If you don’t understand the meaning behind worship, then you can’t really worship. This week we are looking at how we worship God. (See Text)

To fully understand what it means to worship God in Spirit and in truth, we must first look at the meaning behind both of these words.

Spirit (Greek: pneuma) (The Greek pronounces the “p”) <It’s where we get the word pneumatic>

It means air, essence, soul, God, principles.

Jesus addresses the issue of worship first with the unseen. (God, soul, principles.)

Worshipping God in spirit is to worship Him in our inner-man (the unseen part of us, our spirit, where our principles are.)

Mark 12:30 Jesus tells us to “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.”

Heart, Soul, and Mind are words directly related to worshipping (loving) God in Spirit.


 

Truth (Greek: aletheia) It means truth!

It is important to know that the Gospel of John often equates alethia to Jesus.

Truth is also often equated to the word of God

John 1:1 says “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”

Therefore, the Word (truth) is God.

Then John says in 1:14 “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory”

Jesus (The Word / The Truth) became flesh!

Flesh (Greek: sarx) It means the external body.

Jesus address the issue of worship secondly with the seen. (External body, actions.)

Worshipping God in truth is to worship Him in our outer-man through our actions.

Mark 12:30 Jesus tells us to “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.”

Strength is a word directly related to worshipping (loving) God in Truth (action).

Thesis: Jesus Christ tells us in John 4 to worship the Father in spirit and in truth so we may understand the principles and action at work behind our worship.

Transition: Four Characteristics of worshipping God in Spirit and Truth:

      I.      Reverence

a.     We worship God in Spirit though reverence

b.     Reverence is defined as feelings of deep respect or devotion

c.      Psalm 5:7 “But as for me, I will (choose to) come into Your house <devotion> in the multitude of Your mercy; In fear (deep awe) of You <respect> I will worship toward Your holy temple.”

d.     To worship God in spirit our attitudes and principles reflect the characteristics of reverence.


 

   II.      Adoration

a.     We worship God in Spirit though adoration

b.     Psalm 116:1 “I love the Lord, because He has heard my voice and my supplications.”

c.      To worship God in spirit our attitudes and principles reflect the characteristics of adoration.


 

III.      Humility

a.     We worship God in Truth though humility

b.     Humility is the act of realizing that we are not in control, that God is, and submitting to his will for our life.

c.      God says in Isaiah 55:9 “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts.”

d.     To worship God in truth our actions must reflect the characteristics of humility.


 

IV.      Obedience

a.     We worship God in Truth though obedience

b.     Obedience is holding true the commandments of God, and abiding in his will and plans for us.

c.      1 Samuel 15:22-23 “Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, As in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, And to heed than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, And stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry...”

d.     To worship God in truth our actions must reflect the characteristics of obedience.

 

 

Close: Having the right attitude when we worship God is a critical part of our relationship with Him. God wants us to enjoy Him, and if any wrong ideas or motives exist in our life then we have barriers that are keeping us from the fullness of what God has for us. Maybe you see that you lack in one of these areas. Perhaps you are good at talking the talk but not walking the walk. If that’s you, God allows us the opportunity to repent and come to him.

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