Did God create men and women to be equal in the sense of “interchangeable?” Are male/female differences something to be enjoyed or downplayed as being irrelevant? If they are both equal before God, does this mean their responsibilities in the home or in the church are identical in His sight? Today’s passage may provide us with some answers.
It’s far less important where we worship than that we worship – and it’s also important how. A Samaritan woman once brought up to Jesus the issue of location. Christ responded as follows, de-emphasizing place altogether:
Jesus said to her, ‘Woman, believe Me, the hour is coming when you will neither on this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, worship the Father … 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 4:21, 23-24 (NKJV)
The fact that worship may be valid in all places at all times does not automatically mean that we can worship in any old way we want. God gives us two prerequisites:
The first is worship in spirit: This excludes all worship in the flesh. Every church musician knows what it’s like to focus more on his music than on his Maker, more on the sound than on the Savior. Examples like these touching all of us could be multiplied. It’s really rather easy to focus on the creature more than the Creator during praise, but this we should never do.
There’s also worship in truth: This implies that there is such a thing as false worship – worship that is fake, make-believe, hypocritical. And since Jesus is “truth personified” (John 14:6), true worship also excludes all worship that excludes Him.
Worship the Lord often today, wherever and whenever you can. And may the Father find a true worshiper when He looks at you.