Give Him Glory

Bible Book: John  4 : 4-24
Subject: Worship; Glory to God; Honoring Jesus

Would you take God’s Word and be finding the Gospel of John chapter 4, and in just a moment we’re going to look at verse 24. For a month now, we’re going to be talking about worship; we’re going to be having special seminars on worship; we’re going to be preaching messages every Sunday morning on worship. The theme of this month is “Give Him Glory,” and that’s what we want to do. And the way to give Him glory is to worship Him in spirit and in truth.

John chapter 4 - look, if you will, in verse 24. Here are the words of Jesus: “Jesus said, God is a spirit, and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth.” Now, look up here, and let me ask you a question. Have you ever been in a boring worship service? Be careful how you answer. Listen - you have never been in a boring worship service. You may have been in a boring church service, but if you have been worshiping God, that is one of the most thrilling, exciting, fulfilling, and meaningful things that could possibly happen to you. To learn to worship God in spirit and in truth will turn the monotonous into the momentous. Worshiping Him in spirit and in truth.

Now, listen to me, folks. What we’re talking about today is not incidental; it is the bottom line, it is the ultimate priority, it is the highest good to worship Him. It is your -  listen - your supreme duty; it is your maximum privilege. Did you get that? It is your supreme duty; it is your maximum privilege. You’re going to cheat yourself if you do not listen to this series on worship. You’re going to bless yourself if you will drink it in, imbibe, and practice what our Lord teaches about worship.

They asked Jesus, what is the greatest commandment? Now, they asked the greatest teacher, I suppose, the greatest question, and the greatest question would be, what is the greatest commandment? And the Lord Jesus gave the answer, in Mark chapter 12, verses 29 and 30: “The first of all commandments is, Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God is one Lord and thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart and with all thy soul and with all thy mind and with all thy strength. This is the first and great commandment.” One Lord - one love.

Now, if you keep this commandment, you’ll be blessed. If you fail to keep it, you will suffer. In the passage that we have before us, John chapter 4, the word worship is used at least ten times, some form of the word worship. And I believe that it is the definitive passage in all of the New Testament on the subject of worship.

Now, let me give you the background for this statement that Jesus made, in John chapter 4 and verse 24, that God is a spirit, and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth. The Lord Jesus is on a journey, and I want you to notice, in verse 4, the Bible says, “And he must needs go through Samaria.”

Now, our Lord is going up to Galilee, and He has been down in the southern part of the land of Israel, down in Judah, and now He has turned northward, and He is going to Galilee. Now, normally, when a Jew of this day and age would go from the southern part to the northern part of the land, he would not go through Samaria. He would take a detour, for two reasons.

Number one, the detour was the easiest way to go down along the banks of the river Jordan where there were not so many sharp and rocky crags, and mountains, and precipitous places to fall. That was the easiest way to travel. But, besides that, they went around Samaria, very frankly, because they did not like the Samaritans. Now, that’s to put it mildly. They abhorred the Samaritans, they hated the Samaritans; and the Samaritans returned the favor. Now, who were the Samaritans, these hostile people there? Well, in the year 721 BC, the people of Israel who had rebelled against the Lord were carried away captive - that’s in the year 721 BC - and now, the captors took the strongest and the best, the most noble, the most educated, the finest of the people away captive, but they left the sick, the weak, the poor, and the illiterate - they left them in the land. They said, We don’t want to bother with you, and so the others were carried away captive.

Well, these people who were left in this land that we call Samaria, they began to intermarry with themselves, and they began to reinforce the gene pool of weakness, and, besides that, some Babylonian stragglers came in, and they began to marry with these Jews who were left behind, and what happened is that you had a mixed race, what some would call a mongrel breed of people - the Samaritans and the Babylonians. And the Babylonians brought their paganism in, and the Jews would have nothing to do with these people. They looked down upon them. They would not even eat out of the plate that had been eaten out of by a Samaritan, no matter how many times you washed it. Now, the Samaritans wanted to go down to Jerusalem to worship, but they were not allowed, they were told to stay out, so they built their own place of worship, their own house of worship, on a mountain that was there in Samaria called Mount Gerizim. So, you have two places to worship: you have Mount Zion, where the temple was, and then Mount Gerizim, where the Samaritans worship. 

Now, that’s the background. And the Bible says that Jesus must needs go through Samaria. That is, He had a divine appointment, because, as we’re going to see in just a moment, there was a woman there who needed redemption - she needed to be saved, she needed the Savior. It was not accidental; it was not incidental; it was fundamentally a purpose of our Lord to go through Samaria to this forsaken place by the Jews and to meet this woman who would’ve been so despised by the Jews. It was a divine appointment. When I welcomed you today I said you’re not here by accident. I believe you are here by divine appointment. I believe that God rules over everything. I believe not a blade of grass moves without His permission, and I believe that God has every one of us here by divine appointment, because we, like this woman of old, are going to meet the Savior here in this place. 

Now, let’s continue to read and see what happened here. And, verse 5: “Then he cometh to a city of Samaria which is called Sychar, near to the parcel of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph. Now, Jacob’s well was there.” By the way, I’ve been to Jacob’s well on a number of occasions. That well is still there; it’s one of the most authentic places in the Holy Land. “Now, Jacob’s well was there. Jesus, therefore, being wearied with His journey, sat thus on the well, and was about the sixth hour, there cometh a woman of Samaria to draw water. Jesus saith unto her, Give me to drink, for His disciples were gone away unto the city to buy meat, that is to buy food. Then saith the woman of Samaria unto Him, How is it that thou, being a Jew, asketh a drink of me” - you can almost hear a snarl in her voice as she says this - “which am a woman of Samaria?” Now, it’s bad enough that she was a Samaritan; but she was a woman of Samaria, and the women of this day were looked down upon, and denigrated. And she says, Why are you talking to me? You’re a Jew, I’m a Samaritan - and besides that, I’m a woman.

And then, she goes on to explain it, as if He didn’t know, “for the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans. Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink, thou would’ve asked of Him and He would’ve given thee living water. The woman saith unto Him, Sir, thou hast nothing to draw with and the well is deep.” And, by the way, the well is very deep. I’ve been there; I can testify to that. “From whence then hast thou that living water? Art thou greater than our father Jacob which gave us the well and drank thereof himself and his children and his cattle? Jesus answered, and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again, but whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; the water that I shall give him shall be with him a well of water springing up again to everlasting life.

The woman saith unto Him, Sir, give me this water, that I thirst not, neither come hither to draw. Now, Jesus saith unto her, Go call thy husband and come hither.” And this woman, if she was able to blush, she blushed, because “the woman answered, and said, I have no husband. Jesus said unto her, Thou hast well said, I have no husband, for thou hast had five husbands.” Today, we’d give her an Academy Award, wouldn’t we? “Thou hast had five husbands and he whom thou now hast is not thy husband,” -  that is, now she’s just living with a man without even the benefit of a marriage ceremony - “and that saidest thou truly.” Jesus said, you’re telling the truth when you say, I have no husband. “The woman said unto Him, Sir, I perceive that thou art a prophet” - and I’m going to stop there for just a moment, but I want you to notice this divine appointment. 

Here was a woman; she was bound by sin. Here was a woman who had really a thirsty soul, it was God that she was thirsting for, but she had gone from husband to husband, she had gone from affair to affair, and it had all turned to dust in front of her, and she’s now just sort of a faded flower. She’s living now with a man without even the benefits of marriage; she has become the dirty plaything of, I suppose, a dirtier man. You know what people would call that today? The new morality.

Well, we can tell from John chapter 4 it’s not new and certainly not moral. And we have the same thing today and Hollywood is leading the pack. By the way, when people talk about reforming Hollywood, I think it’d probably be easier to run a soda shop in hell than to reform Hollywood. If it happens, that would be wonderful, but that’s not where I’m pinning my hopes on, I’ll tell you the truth. These actresses, with faces like angels and morals like alley cats, are becoming the entertainment in America today, and people are having their filth piped right into their living room.

Well, here was this woman - she was bound by sin. Don’t envy these people who live in this lifestyle; pity them, pity them. I thank God for Christian homes, a godly marriage, and, friend, that’s what you ought to strive for, and that’s what you ought to build, by the grace of God. But she was bound by sin, because she’d been blinded by Satan. Satan had lied to her. Satan said, this is the way you’re going to find satisfaction, lady. 

Dr. Robert G. Lee, the late great pastor of this church, used to say, you can eat the devil’s corn if you want to, but he’ll choke you on the cob. The devil, as he said, offers high wages, but he pays in counterfeit money. The Bible says, the bread of deceit is sweet, but afterward a man’s mouth shall be filled with gravel. Satan has blinded this woman, and now she’s just broken by sorrow, she’s been discarded by these men like some kind of a worn - ­out garment. Sin has its thrills, but it doesn’t have its joys. Sin thrills, but it kills. It fascinates, then it assassinates. And here she was! Here she was -  bound by sin, blinded by Satan, broken by sorrow - but Jesus must needs go through Samaria. 

This was a divine appointment, and Jesus begins to talk to this woman about living water, about drinking from the well of salvation - himself, the fountain of living water. Now, what she did was what many people do when you start to zero in on their spiritual needs: she began to argue denominations. She said, Now, wait a minute - you’re a Jew; we’re Samaritans. The Jews worship in Jerusalem, the Samaritans worship in Samaria; the Jews worship on Mount Zion, we worship on Mount Gerizim - which is the right place to worship? Did you ever notice how people want to argue denominationalism rather than talk about salvation? Which is the right place to worship? 

I heard about a man, they were saying - you know, she’s saying we worship here because our fathers worshiped here, our father Jacob worshiped here, and our fathers are telling us this is the right place to worship - a Baptist was talking to a Methodist, trying to get the Methodist to be a Baptist, and the Baptist said to the Methodist, Why are you a Methodist? Why aren’t you a Baptist? He said, Well, I’m a Methodist because my father was a Methodist and his father was a Methodist - so I’m a Methodist. The Baptist said, That doesn’t make sense. What if your father was a fool, and your

grandfather was a fool, then what would you be? He said, Well, I guess I’d be a Baptist! People just want to argue religion. That’s what this woman is doing. She’s saying, where should we worship? Look in verse 20: “Our fathers worshiped in this mountain, and ye say that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship.” Now, Jesus now begins to talk to her about what I want to talk to you about today, and that is the subject of worship. Oh, what this woman needed was an encounter with the living God, and that encounter is called worship. 

Now, this woman only had two alternatives. The only alternatives, at least, that she knew of. That is, she could worship in Mount Gerizim, the place of worship there that the Samaritans had built, or she thought maybe in Jerusalem. Now, these were the two options of that day. Let me tell you what they were like. The Samaritans worshiped with zeal. As a matter of fact, there are still a few Samaritans alive today, do you know that? I have been to this place, and I’ve been up on Mount Gerizim, and I’ve met some Samaritans. There are some real live, living Samaritans today. Just a handful of them, just a few hundred of them, that are still living today, still worshiping there. Now, let me tell you about the Samaritans. The Samaritans rejected most of the Old Testament. They only kept five books of the Old Testament, what we call the

Pentateuch. The rest of them, they said, oh, we won’t have anything to do with them. So they rejected primarily a good part of the Word of God - but you talk about worshiping with fervor and zeal, they still do that. They still make animal sacrifices today. These Samaritans have a zeal, but not according to knowledge. Now, that’s the kind of worship they have in Samaria. Now, the Jews, they worship in Jerusalem. They believed all of the Bible of that day, of the Old Testament. They believed it from Genesis to Malachi, they believed it all, and they worshiped there in the Temple; but their religion was dead, dead as a wedge. Jesus said, Isaiah prophesied of you, This people honoreth me with their lips but their heart is far from me.

So what you have here on the one hand is uninformed zeal, and on the other hand dead orthodoxy. Now, that’s what you have today, folks, all around, if you look around. By and large, we have basically the same thing today when people are trying to worship. The Samaritans worshiped in ignorance, but they had zeal; the Jews had the truth, but they rejected the spirit. And thank God we don’t have to choose between enthusiastic heresy or lifeless orthodoxy. And so, this woman had these two options -  two options: they had the heat without light, light without heat; to fry in fanaticism, or to freeze in formalism; but neither one of them knew the truth of what it is to worship. 

Now, with that as a background, I want you to look now at the Word, in verse 21: “Jesus saith unto her, Woman, believe me, the hour cometh when ye shall neither in this mountain” - that is, in Mount Gerizim where they were - “nor yet in Jerusalem worship the Father. Ye worship, ye know not what” - that is, you’ve got ignorant worship. “We know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews” - they have the truth. But now notice verse 23: “But the hour cometh and now is when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit” - that’s what the Samaritans specialized in - “and in truth” - that’s what the Jews specialized in - “for the Father seeketh such to worship

Him. God is a spirit, and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth.” 

I.  We Must Worship the Right Person

Now, with that in mind, I want to talk to you about worship today. What is worship in spirit and in truth? Very quickly, I hope you’ll get these facts down. Fact number one: we must worship the right person for it to be true worship. Look, if you will, in verse 23 - the Bible says, “For the Father seeketh such to worship Him.” You must worship the right person, and who is the right person? The Father. Idolatry is to worship the wrong god. First Corinthians chapter 8, verse 6, says, “There is but one God, the Father.” There is but one God. Now, we have people today who don’t want to call God the Father. They say they want to call God Mother - some foolish people have even rewritten the Bible to call God the Father, Mother God, and all of this theological garbage - and that’s what it is, folks; I hate to tell you this, but sheer garbage. God is Father. There is one God, the Father. That’s what the Word of God says. Now, if that offends you, you come apologize to me after the service, and I’ll forgive you. 

Friend, that’s just what the Bible says. God is Father. The Father is not what God is like; the Father is what God is - that is the very nature of God. That does not demean or demote anybody; it just simply means that God is Father. You know what we’re seeing today? A subtle move from Father God to Mother Earth. Did you notice that? From Father, and, beyond that, some to Uncle Sam, from Father God to Mother Earth to Uncle Sam; but, friend, we must worship the right person. The Father seeketh such to worship Him.

Did you know that Jesus called God the Father more than seventy times in the Gospels? It was His favorite term for the Almighty. Now, that blesses me - that blesses me - because I’ve been thinking about the nature of God. You think about His omnipotence, His mighty power - He can do anything. You think about His omniscience - He knows everything. You think about His omnipresence - He’s everywhere. Somebody said that God is a circle who centers everywhere and who circumferences nowhere. That’s a mind - ­boggling thought - that’s His omnipresence. Those are great big double - ­jointed words, and many of us can’t understand that, many of us can’t relate to that; but the Father we can relate to, isn’t that right? The Father seeketh such to worship Him. 

When I was a little guy, a little kid, my daddy sold automobiles; he sold Buick automobiles for East Coast Motors, down in West Palm Beach, Florida. And I can see it right now in my mind’s eye as I’m thinking about it, seeing my dad as he would get his black leather folder that he would have, with his prospects and so forth in it, put his papers in there. I never knew what those papers were all about, but I was fascinated by that thing, and it looked almost like a ladies’ purse - it was folded over, it was black leather, and it had a snap on it. He had his papers in there. He’d put that in his hand, and he’d walk out of the house in the morning, kiss my mama goodbye - I have no earthly idea where he went, what he did; I didn’t know any of that. And when he would come back home, I would welcome him home. Folks, I didn’t have to know what he did, or how he did it, to know him and love him - did you know that? - or experience his love for me. He was my daddy.

I don’t understand where God goes when He goes to work, how He flings out the stars, and scoops out the oceans, and heaps up the mountains, and runs this mighty universe. There are a lot of things about God I don’t know, and that doesn’t bother me -  and you don’t know, either. You don’t know - who hath known the mind of the Lord? Who hath known His counsel? You don’t have to know for Him to be your Father, is that not true? You don’t have to know all that your Father does for Him to be your Father. Little children can look to Him, and say, Father. And the Bible teaches that when we get saved, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into our hearts crying, Abba, Father. So, if you worship, number one, you must worship the right person. The Father seeketh such to worship Him.

II.  We Must Worship in the Right Place

Number two, not only must you worship the right person; you must worship in the right place - the right place. Now, where is the place? Well, is the place Jerusalem? Not necessarily. Is the place Mount Gerizim? Not necessarily. It could be, but what Jesus is now teaching is that God does not dwell in temples made with hands. That’s what the apostle Paul said, in Acts chapter 17, verse 24: “God that made the world and all things therein, saying He is the Lord of heaven and earth dwelleth not in temples made with hands.” Now, it’s very important that you understand this. Folks, you don’t have to be inside this building to worship God - did you hear that? As a matter of fact, we make a big mistake when we call a church a temple, or when we call a church a sanctuary. Now, I guess, I say it’s a big mistake - I guess if we accept it in the common parlance of today, it may not be an egregious mistake; but technically, this is not a temple, and, technically, this is not a sanctuary. A sanctuary is a holy place. Now, you say, isn’t this place holy? Well, yes, but you’re still missing what I’m saying. When you get saved, every place is holy; everything is sacred. 

When I was a little boy, I used to go to a very wonderful church, the church I got saved in, baptized in, married in, ordained in - the church building, that is - and, as you walked in the door of that very small auditorium, there was a sign over the door, and it said this: The Lord is in His holy temple. Let all the earth keep silent before Him. Boy, when I walked in there, I mean, I’ve come in to the holy place. Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not putting down that place; I am grateful for that place - that’s why I’m saved. And

I’m not putting down this place - it has been given over and dedicated to the worship of God and the preaching of the gospel of Jesus Christ; it belongs to Jesus - don’t get me wrong, now. Don’t think I’m putting this place down. But, folks, you want to know where the sanctuary is now? Right here, right here - that’s what Paul said, in 1 Corinthians chapter 6, verse 19: “What, know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost, which ye have of God?” God lives in me; God lives in you. You know there are people who wouldn’t think of defiling this place who would defile this place. I mean, some of you would not smoke in here, but, as soon as you get out, you light up. You say, I wouldn’t smoke in there - that’s the church. Well, friend, you’re the sanctuary. Some of you would not use language in here that you would use out there. Why is that? If you had to defile either one - and I pray God you’ll not defile either one - but it’d be far better to defile this than to defile this, wouldn’t it? See, you’re the temple of God. 

And so this woman said, where are we going to worship? Are we going to worship over here in Mount Gerizim or are we going to worship down there in Jerusalem? Jesus said, here’s where you worship: right here. God is a spirit - God is spirit - and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth. And so where do we worship? Any place, any time. What a privilege we have. I want you to put your bookmark there in John chapter 4, and turn, if you will, to Hebrews chapter 10 with me for just a moment. In Hebrews chapter 10, let me show you something wonderful about the privilege that you and I have to worship our Lord at any time in any place. In Hebrews chapter 10, look with me in verse 19, if you will, please. And the Bible says, “Having therefore brethren, boldness, enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus by a new and living way which He hath consecrated for us through the veil, that is to say, His flesh.” Pastor, what does that mean? Well, when He says, the holiest, it’s talking about the Holy of Holies in the temple, or in the Tabernacle. Nobody would dare go in there unless they were the high priest, and the high priest could only go in once a year, and when he went in he went in with a basin of blood, and with fear and trembling, lest he do something wrong and God strike him dead. That’s where the Shekinah glory of God was; that’s where the Ark of the Covenant was; that was the most holy place in the temple; and it’s called the holiest. But now he talks to us, brothers and sisters in Christ, “having therefore brethren boldness to enter into the holiest,” - how do we enter? Not with a basin of blood, but with the blood of Jesus - “by a new and a living way which He hath consecrated for us through the veil, that is to say, His flesh.” Everything in that Old Testament was just a picture of our Lord, and the veil pictured our Lord. The holy place and the Holy of Holies - there was a holy place and the holiest place, or the Holy of Holies - was separated by a veil. That veil was about six inches thick, in the temple, and the veil had four colors. It was white, and it was blue, and it was scarlet, and it was royal purple. Must’ve been a beautiful thing. And you remember the Bible says that when Jesus was crucified - you read about it there in Matthew chapter 27 - there was an earthquake, and that veil was torn from the top to the bottom - remember that? It was torn asunder. And so, people could not walk right in to the Holy of Holies, but this was done when Jesus shed His blood, to make a way into that holy place. 

Now, listen to this very carefully. That veil pictured the Lord Jesus Christ. Even the colors pictured the Lord Jesus Christ. White spoke of His sinlessness. The blue spoke of the fact that He’s the Son of God from heaven. The red spoke of the fact that He would shed His blood upon this earth, and that He was a man as well as God. But, if you take the scarlet red and the blue and blend them together, you get purple, which shows His royalty; and, when you look at the purple, you can’t tell where the blue ends and where the red begins. And, when you look at the Lord Jesus, you can’t tell where His deity ends and His humanity begins; or His humanity begins and His deity ends.

He’s the God - ­Man. That veil was a picture of the Lord Jesus Christ; it was a picture of His body, and just as His body was torn on that cross, that veil was torn, and made a way into the Holy of Holies. 

Now, folks, listen. You and I have that privilege to go into the holy place that the Old Testament Jews never had - not in Jerusalem, not in Mount Gerizim - there is a new and a living way in spirit and in truth through the Lord Jesus Christ. We go right into the Holy of Holies. Now, I’m going to let you in on a secret. I’ve already been in there this morning, and I hope that you have. I hope that you know the joy, the privilege, of going in to that holy place.

Now, worship is any time, any place that you will enter into the holy place by the blood of Jesus Christ. Now, you must worship the right person; you must worship in the right place. Every day is a holy day; every place is a sacred place. You say, well now, Pastor, does that mean that we’re not to come here anymore to worship? Oh, no, if you continue to read in Hebrews chapter 10 and verse 24, it says we’re not to forsake the assembling of ourselves together. Don’t ever forsake this. If you do that, you’ll sin against God, for God has commanded you not to forsake the assembling. As a matter of fact, if you forsake the assembly, if you don’t come to the assembly, in the Bible it is a mark that you’re not saved, that you never really believed, that you’ve gone back to perdition.

Now, coming to church doesn’t save you. Billy Sunday used to say," Going to church won’t make you a Christian any more than going in the garage will make you an automobile." I agree with that. Coming to church doesn’t save you, but when people willingly, definitely, deliberately, carelessly, callously neglect the house, the place of the assembling, in the New Testament days, it was a sign that they’d never ever truly been saved. They went out from us, but they were not of us. So, where’s the place of worship? Any time, any place - but there is something significant also about our coming together to worship.

But now, listen very carefully. Brother Whitmire, I hope we can teach our people this, in these things on worship: the significance of coming here is not primarily that we come to worship, but that we bring our worship to church. We bring our worship. In other words, we have been with the Lord all week long, and so, when we come together, all of us, full of God, we don’t come here to get filled up - we’re already full of God; we come here to celebrate together.

Why do we come together? Why do we come to corporate worship? Do you know what you’re saying when you’re here today? And I’m so glad you are. You’re saying two things. Number one, you’re saying, God is important to me; and you’re saying, you people are important to me; my brothers and sisters in Christ are important to me. That’s why we forsake not the assembling of ourselves together, but we absorb one another. It fires me up to meet this man; I hope it fires him up to meet me. You blessed me today, choir - by the way, you really did, you blessed me today - and musicians and others. As we worship, as I look out there and look at your face; and those of you who are smiling and nodding and saying amen, that is a blessing to me. The Bible says, we exhort one another. Now, you must worship the right person, you worship in the right place - every day is a holy day, every ground is sacred ground - but we still assemble together as brothers and sisters in Christ, bringing our worship, to our Lord.

III.  We Must Worship with the Right Procedure

Now, here is the next thing I want you to see: we worship with the right procedure.

We worship our Lord in spirit and in truth. Now, what does it mean to worship in spirit? He’s talking about the human spirit here; he’s talking about your spirit. You don’t just worship God with your hands and your knees and your eyes and your mouth; that’s involved, but it’s got to come from within, you’ve got to serve God with your spirit. That’s what the apostle Paul said, in Romans 1 verse 9: “God is my witness whom I serve with my spirit.” That’s the reason the Psalmist said, “Bless the Lord, oh my soul, and all that is within me bless His holy name.”

Now, if you don’t enjoy a worship service like this, and, very frankly, I know that some of you are here because somebody asked you to come, some of you are passing notes, some of you are reading - I couldn’t be around this long without knowing that. I know what you’re doing - some of you are planning your menu, you’re out to lunch already - I know that, I know that - hey, I wasn’t born yesterday - but I’m going to tell you your problem, I’m going to tell you your problem: it’s not primarily with the preacher - you remember I said, if you’ve ever been in a boring worship service - one woman said, I’ve never seen my pastor’s eyes; when he prays, he closes his, and when he preaches, he closes mine. Hey, listen. Let me tell you something, folks: the problem is in your heart; if worship seems boring to you, if a service like this seems boring to you, you just don’t have the right stuff.

You see, you have to worship God in spirit, and to worship God in spirit, the Holy Spirit has to be in your spirit, because it’s the Holy Spirit, God has sent forth His Spirit into our hearts, crying Abba, Father. And if you don’t enjoy coming to church, if it’s tedious and tasteless to you, and a bore to you, and a drag to you, there’s nothing wrong with you that an old - ­fashioned revival, or a good dose of salvation, wouldn’t cure. That’s right! Worship in spirit, and then you worship in truth - in truth. 

Now, you don’t choose the Samaritan way, you don’t choose the Jerusalem way; you choose the Jesus way, which is worship in spirit and in truth. Psalm 145, verse 18: “The Lord is nigh unto all them that call upon Him, all that worship Him in truth.” That’s why we always here at Bellevue have an exposition of the Word of God. Some say, oh, I just want to worship; I just want to sing and pray and praise and fellowship and da da da da da, and you don’t worship in truth. Real worship has a theological base, and your worship rises no higher than your concept of God; and you worship in spirit, but you must worship in truth.

I was reading on the airplane last week down there in Clearwater, Florida, people are coming by the thousands - maybe you saw this, it was in USA Today. People are coming by the thousands to look at a plate glass window in an automobile dealer agency where some water from the sprinkler made a chemical image of the Virgin Mary, so they say, and they’re coming by thousands to worship the water on plate glass. That’s right! Hey, folks, pardon me, but, but that’s not too bright. I used to use another word, but my wife said, don’t use that word anymore. We worship God in spirit, from our hearts, and in truth, based on the Word of God. The right person - listen to me, folks -  you worship right - in the right place, anywhere, anytime - because you’re a temple of God. Then, you worship with the right procedure - in spirit and in truth.

IV.  We Must Worship for the Right Purpose

And here’s the final thing - and listen very carefully: You worship for the right purpose. Now, what is the right purpose? For the Father seeketh such to worship Him. I’m sick and tired of people saying, Well, I didn’t get anything out of it. Well, you didn’t come to get anything out of it, if you came for a right reason; you came to put something into it. I want to get a blessing. You read the Bible and find out how many times the Bible says we’re to bless the Lord. Bless the Lord, oh my soul, and all that is within me, bless His holy name!

Here’s a secret, folks: when you forget about yourself, and you begin to worship Him, there’ll be blessings all over you. When you stop trying to be blessed, and start worshiping God. There’s a chorus that we sing - Forget about yourself and worship Him! That’s the purpose of it. 


And this poor woman, who had a thirsty soul, finally found what she was thirsty for. Friends all around me are trying to find what the hearts yearns for, by sin undermined. I have the secret, I know where ’tis found; true pleasures only in Jesus abound.

Let’s bow our heads in prayer. Heads are bowed and eyes are closed. Friend, there was a thirsty woman so long ago, and she met the Savior, and He satisfied her deepest longing. I know right now that there’s a thirst in your heart if you don’t know Jesus. Now, put away - put away - your foolish thoughts right now. Don’t let the devil distract you right now. God brought you here to be saved, and if you’re not saved right now this moment, you can give your heart to Jesus and be saved. I want you to pray this prayer.

Dear God… - just pray right now - Dear God, I know that you love me. I know that you want to save me. Jesus, you died to save me, and you promised to save me, if I would only trust you. I do trust you, Jesus. Would you pray that prayer? I do trust you, Jesus. Right now, this moment, come into my heart. Forgive my sin. Save me, Lord Jesus. Pray that from the depth of your being: Save me, Lord Jesus. Save me, save me, Lord Jesus. Now, thank Him for doing it. Pray this way: Lord, I don’t look for a sign. I don’t ask for a feeling. I just stand on your Word. Thank you for saving me, and help me never to be ashamed of you. In your name I pray. Amen.