Google+ 02/22/13 God is Looking For You!

John 4:23-24

 

"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.” 

 

 

Today's Scripture will seem familiar to many of you.  These two verses are a key part of Jesus' discussion with the Samaritan woman at the well.  John goes into great detail recounting this wonderful conversation.  Actually, he devotes all of Chapter 4 of his gospel to this one dialog.  Why?  Because Jesus' instruction, and words on the subject of worship and who God really is, holds great importance to the woman at the well, and all of us that call ourselves Christians.  John gives us an "eyewitness" account as he quotes Jesus saying, "true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth."  Who is Jesus referring to as "true worshipers?"  Jesus is separating the "sheep from the goats" in this passage.  Notice that the next line of our Scripture tells us that "the Father is looking for those who will worship Him that way."  Be careful, because I am about to tell you one of those Biblical truths that people do not want to hear.  God does not listen to or look for "fake" worshipers.  Because one shows up on Sunday, reads some responsive reading, sings a song, and takes communion, doesn't make one a "true worshiper."  Yes, I said that out loud, because Jesus wants you to hear it!  God wants you to be devoted to Him only.  Our other "gods" have changed from what they were in Biblical days.  Most of us no longer worship Baal!  No ,today we worship TV, golf courses, computers, bowling alleys, theme parks, and casinos.  Think about it.  During a given week, how many times do we give up "true worship in the temple" for one of these "gods."  One of the reasons we have such problems with our children as they "grow up" is because we have given the task of raising them, in most part, to our public schools, and then allowed God to be removed from those very institutions. There are first graders at a school near my home that go to school at 7 AM and stay there until 6 PM!  How have we gotten so far off the Godly mark we should be aiming at?  Our Scripture tells us.  We simply are not true worshipers!   The last line of our Scripture tells us why we must change how we look at worship.  God is spirit.  In order for us to hear and worship God, we must worship Him in spirit and in truth.  This phrase is repeated in our Local New Testament Churches almost every time we walk into them.  But do we worship Him in spirit and in truth?  I don't know about you, but there have been times in my life that I have lied to God.  I have not been truthful.  I have said things to Him in worship that simply were not true.  I have "worshiped" on "automatic pilot!"  Fortunately, God through His Scripture and the Holy Spirit, have convicted my heart to never do that again, but sometimes this is very painful.  Confessing our sin is uncomfortable, especially to God.  You cannot be a "true worshiper" if you don't "come clean" with God.  You don't need a priest.  You already have one in Jesus Christ.  The next time you enter "into His gates with Thanksgiving and His courts with praise," pull up a pew or chair and get cozy with God in His "family room."  It is okay to have a cup of coffee or something to eat!  God doesn't care what you are wearing.  He cares what you are saying and doing!  Remember our Scripture.  God is looking for "true worshipers."  John describes God as being spirit, love, and light in his gospel.  We would be well-served to remember all three. When God comes looking for "true worshipers," will you be found?  Yes, in order to be found we have to show up!  But, showing up is not enough.  We must "worship the Father in spirit and in truth."  That requires not just our presence, but our honest, frequent participation!