Lesson 13

Worship in Spirit and Truth

Worship is the highest form of service we can give the Lord, for worship is to Him and to worship Him is what we are created for – to bring Him joy, to be in relationship with Him.

Who are we to be called to such a joy of knowing Him, to such a destiny as dwelling in His glorious presence? As for me, I have discovered that the more I come to know Him, the lower I need to bow to His greatness, for the bigger I see Him, the more I am humbled. The day I saw the Lord answer His people’s prayer for rain within the hour, above all the healings He did that day, made me cry with gratitude for the great love and compassion that He showed to His people. Moses must have felt a similar way, as the Lord led the children of Israel through the Red Sea and supplied manna daily for them in the wilderness. Oh, the awesomeness and greatness of our living God! I felt at the time that I barely knew Him, for He showed Himself to us in such a way that day greater than I could ever have imagined. If we read of Paul’s life we see that he, too, discovered the same thing. At his conversion he saw himself as special, as some of us do when God first calls us.

‘And from those who were reputed to be something (what they were makes no difference to me; God shows no partiality) – those, I say, who were of repute added nothing to me.’

(Galatians 2:6)

Later Paul thinks differently:

‘For I am the least of the apostles, unfit to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God.’

(1 Corinthians 15:9)

As he grows further in the Lord he has this to say in Ephesians 3:8

‘To me, though I am the very least of all the saints, this grace was given, to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ.’

Then in 1 Timothy 1:15

‘The saying is sure and worthy and full of acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners. And I am the foremost of sinners.’

What has happened here? Paul has not come lower; only the opinion he has of himself compared to the greatness of the Lord which has been revealed to him. He has in fact grown far closer to the Lord, and grown more Christ-like, so next to the majesty and splendour of his God he had to bow lower.

So it is only through what Jesus alone has done for us that we have through Him this priceless privilege of coming to know God, the King of kings, and to dwell in His presence. Compared to His greatness we are very very small indeed and the bigger we see Him the smaller we see ourselves.

So now, who is this great God whom we worship? Let’s see who John says He is in Revelation 1:4–8:

‘John to the seven churches that are in Asia:

Grace to you and peace from him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven spirits who are before his throne, and from Jesus Christ the faithful witness, the first-born of the dead, and the ruler of kings on earth. To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood and made us a kingdom, priests to his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen. Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, every one who pierced him; and all the tribes of the earth will wail on account of him. Even so. Amen.

“I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.’

Now let’s see how the living creatures see God:

‘And the four living creatures, each of them with six wings, are full of eyes all round and within, and day and night they never cease to sing,

“Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord God Almighty,

who was and is and is to come!”’

(Revelation 4:8)

Let’s now see how the elders see God:

‘And the twenty-four elders who sit on their thrones before God fell on their faces and worshipped God, saying,

“We give thanks to thee, Lord God Almighty, who art and who wast,

that thou hast taken thy great power and begun to reign.”’

(Revelation 11:16–17)

Now the angels, during the pouring out of the wrath of God upon the people who disobeyed God at the end of the age:

‘The third angel poured his bowl into the rivers and the fountains of water, and they became blood. And I heard the angel of water say,

“Just art thou in these thy judgements, thou who art and wast, O Holy One.”’

(Revelation 16:4–5)

The plagues at the end of the age are similar to those God poured out on Egypt to release His chosen people, the Jews. God is Almighty, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of Moses, the God of His chosen nation, the Jews, the God of every believer who has ever walked on this earth, the God of all eternity, of all the heavens and earth. He and only He is.

Yet this great God calls to feeble mankind like us and says in Jeremiah 33:3:

‘Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things which you have not known.’

So how do we call upon this great God who was and is and is to come?

‘Honour and majesty are before him;

strength and joy are in his place.

Ascribe to the Lord, O families of the peoples,

ascribe to the Lord glory and strength!

Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name;

bring an offering, and come before him!

Worship the Lord in holy array.’

(1 Chronicles 16:27–29)

What offering can we bring Him?

‘For thou hast no delight in sacrifice;

were I to give a burnt offering, thou wouldst not be pleased.

The sacrifice acceptable to God is a broken spirit;

a broken and contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.’

(Psalm 51:16–17)

‘To do righteousness and justice

is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice.’

(Proverbs 21:3)

‘“and to love him with all the heart, and with all the understanding, and with all the strength, and to love one’s neighbour as oneself, is much more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.” And when Jesus saw that he answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.”’

(Mark 12:33–34)

We need to worship God with the offering of ourselves to Him, of our very lives to Him, for He alone is worthy. Worship to God is not only what we pour out of ourselves to His feet upon His throne, but the very lives we live out for others upon this earth. It’s all that we are, all that we ever hope to be, given up for Him, now and forever. That is the highest form of sacrifice we can give Him, the greatest offering we are capable of giving God, ourselves, and our lives. Our only opportunity to give Him anything is here on this earth, in loving Him and others as ourselves.

‘Ascribe to the Lord, O heavenly beings,

ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.

Ascribe to the Lord the glory of his name;

worship the Lord in holy array.

The voice of the Lord is upon the waters;

the God of glory thunders,

the Lord, upon many waters.

The voice of the Lord is powerful,

the voice of the Lord is full of majesty.’

(Psalm 29:1–4)

Here all the heavenly beings worship Him and as we read again in Hebrews that all God’s angels worship Him:

‘And again, when he brings the first-born into the world, he says,

“Let all God’s angels worship him.”

Of the angels he says,

“Who makes his angels winds,

and his servants flames of fire.”

But of the Son he says,

“Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever,

the righteous sceptre is the sceptre of thy kingdom.”’

(Hebrews 1:6–8)

We are able in worship to join the angels of heaven and every living creature in heaven, to worship Him, who is King of kings and Lord of lords:

‘O come, let us worship and bow down,

let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker!

For he is our God,

and we are the people of his pasture,

and the sheep of his hand.’

(Psalm 95:6–7)

‘Worship the Lord in holy array;

tremble before him, all the earth!’

(Psalm 96:9)

‘Let us go to his dwelling place;

let us worship at his footstool!’

(Psalm 132:7)

Yes, let us worship at His footstool, let us rise up in worship until His presence surrounds us and fills us with His incredible joy, His wonderful love, His everlasting peace.

Let us worship in the way Jesus called us to worship Him in John 4:23–24:

‘But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for such the Father seeks to worship him. God is spirit, and those who worship him, must worship in spirit and truth.’

When we respond to this scripture, a deeper level awaits, that of a heart-to-heart connection in Him, to become one in Him, a giving yourself to Him and receiving His love which transcends your mind, emotions, heart and body, seeping into every part, until in Him you feel absorbed.

We are so indebted, so helpless, next to what He has done for us, given to us, through salvation and love. We have nothing to give God other than our heart and He receives it as precious, and then gives to you a touch of His heart, holding them together to become as one heart in Him.

A belonging, a union in Him. Allow Him to anoint your heart with His, to rub some of His love and character into yours. For the Lord said to me, ‘For this is the life I have called you to. To become one with Me, I in you and you in Me, to fill you with My love, to anoint you with My holy oil, that you may walk forth in the world as a radiant witness for Me. So go forth in joy, My child, for I am surely with you.’

As you respond to Him, and begin to come closer and closer to Him in worship, He will change you, fill you with His love and call you to new life in Him, for this is the life He has called us to.

Prayer is the only unlimited treasure on this earth. All other things are limited. Only prayer can take one into the unlimited realms of the heavenlies, into the very presence of God. Here Jesus is unlimited in beauty, with unlimited love that is deeper than the deepest ocean, higher than the highest heavens and wider than the widest horizons. His joy and peace are likewise. Even His patience and kindness extend beyond all limits.

Available to each one of us is unlimited access into such beauty in Him; not visible but heartfelt, relational, silent heart connection with indescribable joy and peace and beauty. This is meant for us, kept for us, reachable, attainable, but only through Jesus. For this is all about Him, a giving and receiving, no words, just heartfelt connection, a blending, a melting, a cleansing, a filling of calm beauty and love, like warm oil seeping into every crevice of your being.

There is no better place to be than alone with the Lord. He touches your heart with such gentleness, a contact with Him that is so so precious. This access into Him is unlimited. It involves yielding to the changes He effects in your life and flowing with Him who created all things.

Come to Him and He will lead you into all truth. Churches and conferences can teach, books can educate and encourage, but nothing can compare with coming to the Master Himself, our Lord. Nothing can replace Him. Nothing can touch or compare to coming into His presence. Nothing but knowing the reality of the Lord yourself. Only He can reach your heart.

....> Lesson 14

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