"Woman," Jesus replied, "believe me, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth." John 4:21-24
What words come to your mind when you hear the term "worship"? Maybe you think about a place, like church. Maybe you think about a style, like music. Maybe you think about people, like those who raise their hands. If we are not careful, we can make worship about anything and everything other than what it is truly meant to be. Worship is all about God and God alone. It is not about a place or a style or a people. I love this passage of Scripture in John. A Samaritan woman saw Jesus face to face, and worship was the topic of discussion. Ed Young, Jr., said this about the Samaritan woman: "Jesus was going to use this encounter with a Samaritan woman to change her from a wanderer to a worshiper!" In this passage, God shows us that worship takes place from the inside out. Worship happens in the heart and flows from inside a person's soul. Jesus started the conversation with this woman. She had questions. He had answers. Jesus knew her, and she responded to him with honesty. She really thought that worship could only take place on the mountain or in Jerusalem, but Jesus told her worship is not about the place; worship is about the Savior! She knew about the Messiah, but she didn't realize yet that He was sitting right in front of her. Jesus tells her in verse 26, "I, the one speaking to you - I am he." At this moment, the Samaritan woman finally understood what (or Who) worship was all about. In verses 28-30, she left her jar of water and went back to her people rejoicing. Her comment was, "Come, see a man who told me everything I ever did. Could this be the Messiah?" And then we find in verses 39-41 the powerful conclusion of salvation and worship that happens from the inside out. "Many of the Samaritans from that town BELIEVED IN HIM because of the woman's testimony, 'He told me everything I ever did.' So when the Samaritans came to him, they urged him to stay with them, and he stayed two days. And because of his words many more became BELIEVERS." As Christ followers, we must make worship about Jesus. We must worship Him in Spirit and in truth. When that kind of worship takes place...worship from the inside out...people's lives will be changed forever! Come, see a Man...and worship Him!