My favorite definition for the word worship is…
Offering your entire life . . . your everyday, ordinary, sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life.
It’s as much attitude as action!
Do you ever get confused by Jesus’ words about worshipping in spirit and truth?
“But the time is coming—indeed it’s here now—when true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth. The Father is looking for those who will worship Him that way. For God is Spirit, so those who worship Him must worship in spirit and in truth.” John 4:23–24
Me too! So I did some digging…
Worshipping God in spirit and truth means to worship Him with both heart and head and comes from both knowing God and loving Him.
But how? What can you and I do to both know and love God? What does worshipping Him in spirit and truth look like?
How to Worship God in Spirit and Truth
Worship begins with recognizing God for who He is . . . not who we think He is but who He says He is. That’s worshipping Him in truth.
And by God’s grace, we have the presence of His Spirit to teach and remind us of His truth.
Jesus said, “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, who will never leave you. He is the Holy Spirit, who leads into all truth. The world cannot receive Him because it isn’t looking for him and doesn’t recognize him. But you know Him because he lives with you now and later will be in you.“ John 14:16–17
Only with His Spirit living within us and helping us are we able to worship God as He wants.
4 Ways to Worship God in Spirit and Truth
Worshipping God in spirit and truth means worshipping Him the way we love Him . . . with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength.
1. To worship God with all your heart = adoring Him with your emotions.
I will be filled with joy because of You. I will sing praises to Your name, O Most High. Psalm 9:2
Yours, O Lord, is the greatness, the power, the glory, the victory, and the majesty. Everything in the heavens and on earth is yours, O Lord, and this is your kingdom. We adore you as the one who is over all things. 1 Chronicles 29:11
“When you focus on how wonderful God is and all the great things He’s done… is doing… and even will do in your life, your natural response will be praise, adoration, and awe. Don’t let yourself ever get used to it… stay amazed!” ~Joyce Meyer
2. To worship God with your soul – is like breathing, it is all-encompassing and only made possible by God’s Spirit living with us.
Then the Lord God formed the man from the dust of the ground. He breathed the breath of life into the man’s nostrils, and the man became a living person. Genesis 2:7
And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. For example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words. Romans 8:26
And because we are His children, God has sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, prompting us to call out, “Abba, Father.” Galatians 4:6
“Your soul will never find rest unless it finds its home. We find it in the simple daily discipline of asking ourselves, “Is God here in this moment?” If he is not, he can be.” ~John Ortberg
3. To worship God with your mind = using knowledge and truth from God’s Word to honor and adore Him.
Jesus said to the people who believed in him, “You are truly my disciples if you remain faithful to my teachings. And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:31–32
When we tell you these things, we do not use words that come from human wisdom. Instead, we speak words given to us by the Spirit, using the Spirit’s words to explain spiritual truths. 1 Corinthians 2:13
“The purpose of the Bible? Salvation. God’s highest passion is to get His children home. His book, the Bible, describes His plan of salvation. The purpose of the Bible is to proclaim God’s plan and passion to save His children.” ~Max Lucado
4. To worship God with your strength = intentional all-in acts of adoration.
But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Galatians 5:22–23
Since we are living by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives. Galatians 5:25
“To love the Lord with all our strength means to love Him “exceedingly” “richly”, “lavishly”, with reckless abandon out of simple devotion.” ~Greg Simas
Worship in spirit and truth says – with all my heart for all my life all I need is you, Lord. It is intimate and personal.
So like love, worship is more than a feeling or emotion.
And I can’t do it on my own. With all life’s temptations and distractions, with all the busyness and my own self-absorption, I will never worship God the way He wants or even the way I want.
Yes, there they are again . . . those two words that change everything.
But God through His grace has given you and me His Spirit. The One living within us who alone makes spirit and truth worship possible.
So I will…
♥ Ask – to be filled with the presence of His Spirit that I might know and love Him with all my heart, mind, soul, and strength.
♥ Seek – to know His truth through the study of His Word.
♥ Do – follow His will as He reveals it to me.
Why? Because God’s love overwhelms me.
You and I have been bought at an exorbitant price. The very lifeblood of God’s own Son, Jesus. The God of the universe loves us so much He gave His life for us. And friends that inspires a life of worship.
“Worship of the living and true God is essentially an engagement with Him on the terms that He proposes and in the way that He alone makes possible.” -David Peterson
Will you pray with me?
Father, I need You. Forgive me. I am selfish and self-absorbed. I want to worship You as You desire but I make everything about me. I give in to the temptations of busyness and distraction. I chase whims and desires.
Help me, Father. I want to love you with all my heart, mind, soul, and strength. I want to worship and glorify You with all my life. By Your grace, change my heart. Fill me with Your Spirit. Teach me Your truth. And help me live each day completely surrendered to Your love. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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