Monday, January 7, 2013

True Worship

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True Worship

The Samaritan woman was talking with Jesus about worship, John 4:19-24--“The woman said to Him, ‘Sir, I perceive that You are a prophet. Our fathers worshiped in this mountain, and you people say that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship.’”

“Jesus said to her, ‘Woman, believe Me, an hour is coming when neither in this mountain nor in Jerusalem will you worship the Father. You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, for salvation is from the Jews. But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers.’”
“‘God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.’" NASU
Unfortunately the words of Jesus about worship have been changed from something about life to something about church assembly. Worship under the new covenant is not about going to the temple or the church building to do things in a certain way, but about life in Jesus Christ.  That life in Jesus includes meeting with the church, but worship in truth is not marking things off a list so that we can say we have done our duty. That was the way of worship under the Law of Moses, but Jerimiah says that the new covenant is not like that, Jer 31:31-34--"Behold, days are coming," declares the LORD, "when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah, not like the covenant which I made with their fathers in the day I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, although I was a husband to them," declares the LORD.

"But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days," declares the LORD, "I will put My law within them and on their heart I will write it; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. They will not teach again, each man his neighbor and each man his brother, saying, "Know the LORD,' for they will all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them," declares the LORD, "for I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more." NASU

Yes, worship under the new covenant means knowing God, and being His people. It is a relationship covenant, based on the new birth that puts one in Jesus Christ. God adds those who are born again to the number of His people, Acts 2:38-47. Worship under the new covenant is a way of living that recognizes the presence of God within us, the Holy Spirit. When we are led by that Spirit, we are children of God, and worshiping in spirit and truth.

Paul wrote this, Rom 12:1-5“Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.”

“For through the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think more highly of himself than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgment, as God has allotted to each a measure of faith. For just as we have many members in one body and all the members do not have the same function, so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.” NASU

Yes, all who have been born again by faith in Jesus Christ are  members of one body. Worship in spirit and truth requires us to be kind and considerate of each other. When we see ourselves being kind, considerate, helpful, gentle, patient, encouraging, etc. to each other, we can be confident we are worshiping in spirit and truth. 

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