John 4:23 Prophecy

But 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.
-John 4:23

It was a custom of the Jews to separate themselves from the nations around them as commanded in the law of Moses. This commandment encourages them to stay away from assimilating the practices and traditions of the the heathens (Jeremiah 10:2). Their neighboring nations worship various strange gods accompanied with idolatry, whoredom and even human sacrifices. Typically, Jews rarely engaged in conversations with hem and that also includes the Samaritans. Jesus, however, once had a conversation with a Samaritan woman and she was amazed with his words. On this occasion, Jesus told the woman that they are worshiping on high places which is prohibited according to the law of Moses. Furthermore, he also confessed to her that the true way of worship should be done through the spirit and truth, which will about to change the old practices of Jewish Temple worship.

The Hour Cometh and Now Is

Jesus revelation to the Samaritan woman signifies that the time has come when worshiping the Father may not necessarily be done in the Jewish Temple. For the first covenant that God made with the children of Israel was already replaced (Hebrews 7:18-19, 22) by the new covenant (Hebrews 10:9) he made to the children of promise. This time, however, not only the Jews has the right to be called as the children of God but also the Gentiles, who believed and accepted the Son of God as their Lord and Savior.

The True Worshipers

The true worshipers of God are those people who were not given to idolatry (Deuteronomy 5:7-9), to spiritual whoredom (Hosea 4:12), worship of angels (Colossians 2:18; Revelation 22:8-9), worship of men (Acts 10:25-26), neither through men's crafts and graven images ( Acts 17:24-25, 29) nor on temple sacrifices (Hebrews 10:4-6). The true worshipers as emphasized by Jesus, are those who worship the Father in the spirit and in truth.

Worship in the Spirit and in Truth

Worshiping in the spirit means to glorify God through faith, for he is a spirit (John 5:24), thus, he is invisible in our naked eyes (1 Timothy 1:17). They who pray, give praise and glorify God not by means of idolatry nor intercessions of the dead, are true worshipers indeed. For there is only one mediator between men and God (1 Timothy 2:5; Hebrews 12:24) and there's only one in whose name whereby we must be saved (Acts 4:10-12), that is through Jesus Christ alone.

Samaritan woman in the well
The conversation with the Samaritan
woman in the well.

Worshiping in truth means following the words of God and not the commandments of men nor their traditional way of worship (Mark 7:6-9, 13). When Jesus was praying to the Father, he confessed, "sanctify them through your truth, your word is truth (John 17:17)." Even the Psalmist proclaimed that the truth is the law (Psalms 119: 142), commandments (Psalms 119: 151) and the Word of God (Psalms 119:160). Therefore, true worshipers are known for their hunger and deep love to the Word of God (Bible), keeping their faith firmly rooted to its words.

The Father Seeks True Worshipers

The Father in the beginning, already seek after those people who will worship him in spirit and in truth. As it was ordained in the days of the prophets that he will no longer requires the sacrifice of the lambs, goats and calves (Psalms 40:6; Hebrews 10:5-6). For he desire mercy and knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings (Hosea 6:6).

Temple sacrifices may cleanse the sins of the people but there is a need of continuous offering to be done. Since it is impossible for the blood of animals to take away the sins permanently, thus, there is a need of doing it all over again (Hebrews 10:4-6). That is why God ordained in old time, that a sacrifice is necessary to be made once and for all (Hebrews 10:89-10, 14). A prophecy fully realized in the days of the Messiah as the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ became the turning point of establishing the new covenant (Hebrews 12:24). Therefore, the Father was not anymore worship in the Jewish Temple by burnt sacrifices. Instead, he was now worshiped all over the world in spirit and in truth by Christians through his Son who became the sacrificial Lamb of God (Revelation 5:12).

Prophecy Status: Fulfilled.
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