Week Two - Day Two
Worship Jesus in the spirit
John 4:21-26 Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe me, the hour is coming when neither on 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 the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him. God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.” The woman said to him, “I know that Messiah is coming (he who is called Christ). When he comes, he will tell us all things.” Jesus said to her, “I who speak to you am he.”
“...true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit...” The word “spirit” in Greek is “pneuma,” the same word for breath or wind. Its connotation is the breath of God and the life that was breathed into us in Genesis 2:7. Our spirit represents the life that God gives us; it is our whole being. Jesus was explaining this to the Samaritan woman because she had asked about the right location of worship. Jesus is telling the Samaritan woman that true worship of God isn’t about a location, but is about the deeper, inner position of devotion - our whole being.
There are also many Scriptures that reference God’s “pneuma”, the Holy Spirit. In the chapter prior, we see a conversation between Jesus and a Pharisee named Nicodemus where Jesus explained that for someone to “enter the kingdom of God” they must be “born of water and the Spirit” (John 3:5). Nicodemus, a man well versed in the writings of the prophets, would have recognized this as a prophecy. God spoke through Ezekiel about cleaning his people with water and putting his Spirit within us (Eze 36:25-27). Jesus was explaining about the new life that would be given by the Holy Spirit and that only true worship could be given by those with God’s Spirit within us.
To the Samaritan woman, this means worship was no longer about performing rituals, fulfilling an obligation, or arriving at a particular location. Jesus redefined worship, inviting this woman and us into a relationship with the one true God. To us, this means worship can only happen when the Holy Spirit lives within us and flows out into a lifestyle rather than a set time or place.
• Before you can worship, does the “pneuma” of God live within you? Have you surrendered your will and desires to him?
• As you go about your day today, how will the Holy Spirit impact your decisions and responses to others?
• Take 3 minutes to praise God for the life he has breathed into you and ask the Holy Spirit to show you the things that Christ is calling you to surrender today.
• Record your responses and share them with someone in your group or family.