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 (Jn. 4:23 ESV).
What does it mean to worship in spirit and truth? The key to understanding this directive is found in the same verse, with the phrase “true worshippers”. Was Jesus contrasting true worshipers from false, demonic, or idol worshipers? No!
The Epistle to the Hebrews expands upon the meaning of “true” in this context. Hebrews 8:2 says “A minister of the sanctuary, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man” (KJV). The “true tabernacle” is in contrast to “figures of the true”, as explained in Hebrews 9:24, which says “For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself (Heb. 9:24 KJV).
Do you understand the difference between the true Tabernacle, and the shadow, or figures of the true? The true Tabernacle was heaven itself, in contrast to the shadow of the earthly Tabernacle. Old Testament worship was founded upon a specific, physical location in Jerusalem with multiple physical rituals; however, it was only a shadow of the true worship. True worship occurs in the spirit. While the shadow Tabernacle was a building in Jerusalem, the true Tabernacle is in heaven!
We may then conclude that a shadow worshipper was the Old Testament saint who was not yet born again. True worship, as led by the Spirit, only comes from a true believer, a new creature in Christ, with a renewed heart.
Declare that “I am a true worshipper in Christ!”
APPLY THE WORD
Be conscious that you are the true worshipper Jesus referred to, so you can give God the gift of true, Spirit-led worship.
Thank the Lord for the wonderful blessing of making you a true worshipper in Christ.
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