The Blurred Line – Part 6
Between Law and Grace
“But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” John 4:23-24
Worship in spirit is supernatural, it is not tangible to the touch or measurable by physical scales, it is beyond and greater than physical things like eating and exercise or fashioning things with our hands. Worship in spirit is higher than the natural realm of humanity. Certainly it is connected to natural human things, our bodies, mind, soul and strengths. Worship in spirit engages all of what makes us who we are physically, spitiually and emotionallly. Yes, worship in spirit is emotional, passionate, fervant, intense, deeply felt and deeply uttered from the depts of our being. But it is also about truth.
What does it mean to worship in truth?
Jesus said, He is the truth. To worship in truth is to worship in Jesus. To worship in Jesus is to worship in the Word, because He is the Word made flesh to dwell among us. To woship in the Word is to dwell in the glory of the Lord. God’s glory is inseperable from His presence. Where He is there also is His glory. Now we know that God inhabits the praises of His people and we are His people, the sheep of His pasture.
Our summons to worship Him in spirit and in truth means that we engage our bodies and our minds in the offering of worship to God. Our intellect and our bodies, emotions feelings, thoughts and actions are inseparabel in the midst of true worhship.
So says the Scriptuers, “Blessed the Lord O my sold and ALL that is within me bless His Holy name.”
“Bless the Lord, O my soul; And all that is within me, bless His holy name! Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits…” Psalm 103:1-2
The jouful abandonment of our bodies and our minds in worship to God is what God is seeking in His people, those who say they love Him.
Sing, Dance, Shout! Let Everything That Has Breath Priaise The Lord!
“Sing for joy to the God of our strength; shout aloud to the God of Jacob! Begin the music, strike the tambourine, play the melodious harp and lyre. Sound the ram’s horn…” Psalm 81 1-3a NIV
Just as all things are and were created for God’s pleasure, He also created music and particulary singing for His pleasure. And we get to use song and sound, singing, and shouting, percussion, melody, rhythm and harmony in a great concert of praise and admiration of the God of our strength. I’m a huge tennis fan as some folks know. Nothing gets me off my feet and leaping in the air more than seeing a great rally between my favorite player and his opponent when my player finally wins the point.
I shout! I jump! I clap my hands! It’s a really exhilarating moment. But I am even more passionate for the Lord.
So, when I’m singing and I think about the goodness of God and what He has brought me from and how over and over again He defeats the work of the enemy in my life and how He meets my needs beyond the limits of my human resources I can hardly contain myself.
It’s an exhilarating moment. The great thing about those moments is I can have them all the time. My favorite tennis player may not win every time but God is good and victorious all the time. And in every circumstance. Nothing is impossible for Him.
We all have a reason to sing for joy to the God of our strength and our salvation, to shout aloud to the God of Jacob. The God of Jacob is the God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, the God of Covenant blessing. He is God and His promises are sure and what He has declared on our behalf He will do. So let the music begin! It’s time to praise the Lord! Now! Let everything that has breath praise the LORD!
“Father, God, Glorious Lord, Eternal God, Creator and Sustainer of Life. This song I offer to you today.
A psalm of Joseph to God Most High
I will lift up my hands!
I will stand upon my feet!
I will shout and rejoice
I will sing praises to You,
God of my strength and my deliverance,
God of my provision and hope,
God of my faith and my honor,
To You, alone, O Lord will I direct my praise
You are beautiful beyond my understanding
In Your presence is joy beyond expression.
Your love is wider than all boundaries of measure.
Your love is longer than the sum of all the ages.
Your love is deeper than my soul's comprehension.
Your love is higher than the summit of creation.
O that I had a thousand voices.
I would raise them all in songs to You.
I would tell the Hosts of Angels,
Of Your Love they never knew.
I would stand upon the highest mountain
and repeat some wondrous refrain.
But now with this one voice you've given
Let me sing thanksgiving and praise
to You alone.
Let my song of worship, O Lord,
Always glorify Your name. Amen.”
Jeremiah 16:16—18:23; 1 Thessalonians 4:1—5:3; Psalm 81:1—16; Proverbs 25:6-7