Posts Tagged ‘John 4:23-24’

But without faith

May 1, 2015

Hebrews 11--1,6

Hebrews 11:6 KJV

But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

In this post which is reprinted from a year ago, the Verse of the Day for May 1, 2015 reminds us of God’s response to those who seek earnestly Him. As children we played “Hide and Seek,” whereby sometimes we would be those who would hide while others would “seek us out.” At other times we would be the ones doing the seeking while our playmates were hiding. In a similar manner, we often play hide and seek with God. It seems that at times He’s doing all the hiding, and we’re doing all the seeking. No, we’re doing all the hiding, and He’s doing all the seeking, so it may appear to be.

We must remember the word of the Savior who reminded the woman at the well in Samaria that “God is a spirit and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth. . . . For the Father is seeking such to worship Him.”(John 4:23-24, 29)

II Chronicles 16:9 also offers this reminder:

“The eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to shew himself strong in behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward Him….”

One of my favorite passages from the Old Testament is found in Jeremiah 29:11-13 (NKJV­)

11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. 12 Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. 13 And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.

Hebrews 11, known as the Hall of Faith, introduces a particular individual who diligently followed after God and sought to please him. That individual, of course, is Enoch who is spoken of in the preceding verse:

Hebrews 11:5

By faith Enoch was taken away so that he did not see death, “and was not found, because God had taken him”; for before he was taken he had this testimony, that he pleased God.

As I endeavor to follow hard after God and diligently seek Him, I think of Enoch who inspired this poem:

Enoch’s Song

Hebrews 11:5

 

My heart’s song is to so sing like Enoch,

With all that lies within me, with each breath,

That I too may walk with God and please Him,

That one day when they seek me, I shall not

Be found, for I will have been gathered, caught

Up to meet the Lord in the clouds forever,

Never to taste the bitter root of death

But savor the sweetness of His favor.

That to do His will was my sole desire–

May I leave behind this testimony

Written on the pages of pure a heart

Prepared for the marriage ceremony,

Blameless in His presence with nothing to hide,

So transformed and fashioned to be the bride.

Like Enoch we want to our lives to be living testimonies of those who are “Seekers of Your Heart,” so poignantly expressed in this song featuring Sandi Patty, Steve Green and Larnelle Harris:

John 4:24: Worship is more than a song

January 28, 2015

 John 4--24 2

Revised and re-posted below is a blog entry originally posted a year ago:

John 4:24 (New Living Translation)

For God is Spirit, so those who worship him must worship in spirit and in truth.”

John 4:24, the Verse of the Day for January 28, 2015, was a verse from which I composed a scripture memory song more than 10 years ago with these lyrics:

God is a Spirit: and they that worship him

Must worship him in spirit and in truth.

God is a Spirit: and they that worship him

Must worship him in spirit and in truth.

 

For the Father seeketh such to worship him.

The Father seeketh such to worship him.

The Father seeketh such to worship him,

To worship Him in spirit and in truth.

In a journal entry written a number of years ago, I comment on aspects of praise and worship which are a part of many church services. I note that the service will often begin in a very lively manner, as an attitude of praise energizes the morning service, but a noticeable change takes place as we move from praise into worship where we linger in the intimate presence of God. It is almost like riding in a raft over the white water rapids of a river and then the raft suddenly, yet not so subtly changes its course onto to a placid stream where you float swan-like downstream. Many times those directing praise and worship will lead the congregation into a number of spontaneous acapella worship songs that will usher us into the very presence of God.

The Verse of the Day from John 4:24 speaks of true worship and God’s desire that we “worship Him in spirit and in truth.” This “spirit of worship,” however, is to be maintained outside the confines of the church, as each believer should endeavor to develop “a lifestyle of worship.”

In reflecting upon worship as an expression of the most intimate relationship with God, we recognize and come to know the value of this deepest intimacy, which is the title of a poem also inspired by John 4:23-24:

The Value of Deepest Intimacy

Worship is a lifestyle which reveals God’s worth.  

James Cook

 

23But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true                                       

worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit

and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.

 24God is a Spirit: and they that worship him

must worship him in spirit and in truth.

John 4:23-24

 

Beyond the price of passion when two lovers meet:

You are my treasure, and I am yours furthermore,

More precious than anointing oil compounded to pour

Upon Aaron’s head and running down to his feet.

Costly are aloes that perfume our bed, a token.

How precious is the balm that soothes and allays all fears:

Whispered words tenderly express to caress the ears,

Endearing words of affection constantly spoken.

Though satisfied for now, our love is yet to be fulfilled

To quench the deep thirsting in my soul for more of you.

Though each time that we are together our love seems new,

Only in eternity will true love be revealed.

What is the worth of true worship in the highest degree?

Priceless is the value of this deepest intimacy.

 

Among the many worship songs that speak in terms of an intimate relationship with God is “Worship is More than a Song” by Montell Jordan:

Just as we are earnestly seeking a true worship experience with God, the Father is seeking just such people as these as His worshipers.

John 4:24: A lifestyle of worship

January 28, 2014

John 4--24

John 4:24, the Verse of the Day for January 28, 201, was a verse for which I composed a scripture memory song more than ten years ago with these lyrics:

God is a Spirit: and they that worship him

Must worship him in spirit and in truth.

God is a Spirit: and they that worship him

Must worship him in spirit and in truth.

 

For the Father seeketh such to worship him.

The Father seeketh such to worship him.

The Father seeketh such to worship him,

To worship Him in spirit and in truth.

In a journal entry written a number of years ago, I comment on aspects of praise and worship which are a part of many church services. I note that the service will often begin in a very lively manner, as an attitude of praise energizes the morning service, but a noticeable change takes place as we move from praise into worship where we linger in the intimate presence of God.  It is almost like riding in a raft over the white water rapids of a river and then the raft suddenly, yet not so subtly changes its course onto to a placid stream where you float swan-like downstream. Many times those directing praise and worship will lead the congregation into a number of spontaneous acapella worship songs that will usher us into the very presence of God.

The Verse of the Day from John 4:24 speaks of true worship and God’s desire that we worship Him in spirit and in truth.” This “spirit of worship,” however, is to be maintained outside the confines of the church, as each believer should endeavor to develop “a lifestyle of worship.”

In reflecting upon worship as an expression of the most intimate relationship with God, we recognize and come to know the value of this deepest intimacy, which is the title of a poem also inspired by John 4:23-24:

The Value of Deepest Intimacy

Worship is a lifestyle which reveals God’s worth.  

 James Cook

23But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true

worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit

and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.

 24God is a Spirit: and they that worship him

 must worship him in spirit and in truth.

John 4:23-24

 

Beyond the price of passion when two lovers meet:

You are my treasure, and I am yours furthermore,

More precious than anointing oil compounded to pour

Upon Aaron’s head and running down to his feet.

Costly are aloes that perfume our bed, a token.

How precious is the balm that soothes and allays all fears:

Whispered words tenderly express to caress the ears,

Endearing words of affection constantly spoken.

Though satisfied for now, our love is yet to be fulfilled

To quench the deep thirsting in my soul for more of you.

Though each time that we are together our love seems new,

Only in eternity will true love be revealed.

What is the worth of true worship in the highest degree?

Priceless is the value of this deepest intimacy.

 

Among the many worship songs that speak in terms of an intimate relationship with God is “Here I am to worship”:

Just as we are earnestly seeking a true worship experience with God, the Father is seeking just such people as these as His worshipers.

A living sacrifice: Expression of worship

October 29, 2013

Romans_12-1

In this case, the Amplified Bible offers this expanded rendering of the Verse of the Day for October 29, 2013:

I appeal to you therefore, brethren, and beg of you in view of [all] the mercies of God, to make a decisive dedication of your bodies [presenting all your members and faculties] as a living sacrifice, holy (devoted, consecrated) and well pleasing to God, which is your reasonable (rational, intelligent) service and spiritual worship.

I recall a quote heard frequently in the early days of my realizing what it meant to accept Jesus Christ as savior and to make him Lord: “We are born to live, and born again to serve.”

Romans 12:1 reminds us that serving God is an expression of worship.  In his encounter with the Samaritan woman at the well, Jesus Christ in a discussion about the place of worship spoke these words:

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 New King James)

One expression of worship involves our offering praise and thanksgiving unto God, that is the “sacrifice of praise . . . the fruit of our lips,” whereby we declare that He is worthy of our worship and adoration. The Alleluia Singers offer an illustration of this kind of worship in “We Bring the Sacrifice of Praise.”

Another expression of worship involves doing or serving, as we follow God’s command and make a sacrifice to do His will, to serve Him alone. A musical illustration of Romans 12:1 is “Take My Life—A Living Sacrifice” offered by Chris Christian:

The Verse of the Day reminds us of our “reasonable (rational, intelligent) service and spiritual worship.”  Listen to the Romans 12-1-2 Song “A Living Sacrifice” (Christian Scripture Praise Worship Song with Lyrics).