True Worship

Illustration

Kids in Church – Source unknown (eMailed from Ennis Howard)

A wife invited some people to dinner.
At the table, she turned to their six-year-old daughter and said,
“Would you like to say the blessing?”
“I wouldn’t know what to say,” the girl replied.
“Just say what you hear Mommy say,” the wife answered.
The daughter bowed her head and said,
“Lord, why on earth did I invite all these people to dinner?”

A Sunday school teacher asked her children as they were on the way to church service,
“And why is it necessary to be quiet in church?”
One bright little girl replied,
“Because people are sleeping.”

Scripture

John 4:23-24 (NASB)
23 “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. 24 “God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”

Opening Prayer

Heavenly Father, You alone are worthy of worship and praise. May we come with hearts full of joy as we worship and praise You. Please bless us with Your holy presence. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

Proposition

True worshipers worship God in spirit and truth.

Probing Question

What does true worship require?

Transitional Sentence

True worship requires…

Main Points

1. Time Awareness

John 4:23a (NASB)
23 “But an hour is coming, and now is, …

Meaning

Jesus instructed the woman at the well:

  • Old Economy about to pass away
  • New Economy about to commence

Trying to get her to understand:

  • Worship is not “here or there” only, but at all times and in all places
  • New Economy was in some sense commencing as He was talking to her

Culminating in His full disclosure to her:

John 4:25-26 (NASB)
25  The woman said* to Him, “I know that Messiah is coming (He who is called Christ); when that One comes, He will declare all things to us.” 26 Jesus said* to her, “I who speak to you am He.

Application

We are in the New Economy

  • Worship is not “here or there” only, but at all times and in all places

Illustration

Although this building is set apart as a house of worship, it is still only a building.

  • Worship is from us to God, therefore
  • Worship occurs wherever we happen to be

Some set apart Saturday, others Sunday, for worship.

  • Is not God worthy of worship every day?

2. Spirit Preparedness

John 4:23a (NASB)
23 “But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit …

Meaning

It refers to the mind, the soul, the heart

  • It is opposed to rites and ceremonies, and to the pomp of external worship
  • Spiritual worship
    • A sincere mind
    • An offering of our heart with gratitude and prayer
    • A desire to glorify God without external pomp and splendor

Application

We are to approach God with sincerity and humbleness.

Illustration

James 4:4-10 (NASB)
4  You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. 5 Or do you think that the Scripture speaks to no purpose: “He jealously desires the Spirit which He has made to dwell in us”? 6 But He gives a greater grace. Therefore it says, “GOD IS OPPOSED TO THE PROUD, BUT GIVES GRACE TO THE HUMBLE.” 7 Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. 8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. 9 Be miserable and mourn and weep; let your laughter be turned into mourning and your joy to gloom. 10  Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord, and He will exalt you.

Hebrews 10:22 (NASB)
22 let us draw near with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.

3. Truth… Nothing Less

John 4:23a (NASB)
23 “But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; …

Meaning

Approach God in truth

  • Not through the shadows and types of the Old Economy
  • But through the person of Jesus Christ, the New Economy fulfillment

John 1:17 (NASB)
17  For the Law was given through Moses; grace and truth were realized through Jesus Christ.

Application

We are to approach God through Jesus Christ

  • Jesus Christ and His righteousness alone
  • Not our works or righteousness (violates humility vs. pride)

Isaiah 64:6 (NASB)
6 For all of us have become like one who is unclean, And all our righteous deeds are like a filthy garment; And all of us wither like a leaf, And our iniquities, like the wind, take us away.

Illustration

John 14:6 (NASB)
6 Jesus said* to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.

1 Timothy 2:3-6 (NASB)
3 This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, 4  who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. 5 For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, 6 who gave Himself as a ransom for all, the testimony given at the proper time.

Conclusion

Summary

What does true worship require?

  • Time Awareness
    • We are no longer in the Old Economy
    • We are in the New Economy
      • Worship is not “here or there” only
      • Worship is in all places at all times
  • Spirit Preparedness
    • We are to approach God with sincerity and humbleness
    • Spiritual worship
      • A sincere mind
      • An offering of our heart with gratitude and prayer
      • A desire to glorify God without external pomp and splendor
  • Truth… Nothing Less
    • We are to approach God through Jesus Christ and His righteousness
    • Our works and righteousness are not good enough

John 4:23-24 (NASB)
23 “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. 24 “God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”

Illustration

“Worship is communion with God in which believers, by grace, center their mind’s attention and their heart’s affection on the Lord, humbly glorifying God in response to His greatness and His Word.” – Bruce Leafblad

“Worship is the believer’s response of all that he is – mind, emotions, will, and body – to all that God is and says and does. This response has its mystical side in subjective experience, and its practical side in objective obedience to God’s revealed truth. It is a loving response that is balanced by the fear of the Lord, and it is a deepening response as the believer come to know God better.” – Warren Wiersbe

Closing Prayer

Heavenly Father, thank You for Your love, mercy, and grace. Thank You for the privilege of being able to boldly approach Your throne. We come to You humbly asking that You place within us a heart for worship. We love You Lord and it is in Jesus’ holy name that we pray. Amen.

Gospel Invitation

Is the Holy Spirit stirring within your heart? Is He convicting you of the need to make changes in your life and/or calling you to take action? The Bible says:

James 4:17 (NASB)
17 Therefore, to one who knows the right thing to do and does not do it, to him it is sin.

1 John 5:3 (NASB)
3 For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome.

If the Holy Spirit is urging you to take action, it is important to respond with immediate obedience. Delayed obedience is disobedience. Please read the following sections that apply to your current situation and prayerfully consider the suggested course of actions.

I am lost. I need to accept Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior.

John 3:16-18 (NASB)
16 "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. 17 "For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. 18 "He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

Action

  • To learn more about Jesus and His gift of redemption, read God's Plan of Salvation. If you are already familiar with the Plan of Savation, skip forward to section How to Become a Christian.
  • If you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, please let us know by filling out the Contact Form below.

I am saved; but, I have sin in my life that I need to confess and repent.

1 John 1:8-9 (NASB)
8 If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Acts 3:19 (NASB)
19  "Therefore repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord;

Action

  • Fill out the Contact Form below to confidentially confess the sin in your life and your desire to repent. The information you send will not be shared with anyone else. Your privacy will be protected.

I am saved; but, I need to rededicate my life to the Lord.

Praise the Lord.

Action

  • In your own words, pray a prayer similar to the following:

Heavenly Father, I have fallen short of Your glory and have failed to live up to Your expectations for me. Please forgive me. Lord, I rededicate my life to You. Not my will; but, Your will be done. Thank You for being a God of second chances. Use me Lord. Shape me and mold me into the person You would have me to be. I pray this in the name of Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior. Amen.

  • If you just rededicated your life to the Lord, please let us know by filling out the Contact Form below.

I need to discuss my situation confidentially.

James 5:16 (NASB)
16  Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another so that you may be healed. The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much.

Action

  • Fill out the Contact Form below to confidentially discuss the situation in your life that is troubling you. The information you send will not be shared with anyone else. Your privacy will be protected.

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