Entering the promised land, God chose Israel’s place to worship in Jerusalem. The temple was the only place permitted for making offerings of worship to the Lord. And now worship is everywhere, any time, and just as unique and set apart. Why? Because Jesus…
5 You are to seek the place the Lord your God will choose from among all your tribes to put his Name there for his dwelling. To that place you must go; 6 there bring your burnt offerings and sacrifices, your tithes and special gifts, what you have vowed to give and your freewill offerings, and the firstborn of your herds and flocks. 7 There, in the presence of the Lord your God, you and your families shall eat and shall rejoice in everything you have put your hand to, because the Lord your God has blessed you.
13 Be careful not to sacrifice your burnt offerings anywhere you please. 14 Offer them only at the place the Lord will choose in one of your tribes, and there observe everything I command you.
19 “Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet. 20 Our ancestors worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.”
21 “Woman,” Jesus replied, “believe me, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. 22 You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. 23 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. 24 God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.”
25 The woman said, “I know that Messiah” (called Christ) “is coming. When he comes, he will explain everything to us.”
26 Then Jesus declared, “I, the one speaking to you—I am he.”
When Jesus met the Samaritan woman, she asked him about this place of worship. Her ancestors worshiped on the mountain, and not in Jerusalem. Jesus’ answer was that a time was coming in which worship will not be location-based – worship is to be heart-based, truth-based, spirit-based, Jesus-centred…
Worship in spirit and truth is the true and acceptable way of God now. And just as God wanted the worship of Israel to be unique and not reflect the practices of the surrounding nations, worshiping Jesus in spirit and truth is similar.
Worshiping Jesus is the fulfillment of being set apart for God in worship. Why?
Because there is no one like Jesus. There is no other person or thing which we could worship which is anything like worshiping the Lord Jesus, who was fully God when he came to earth as a babe, grew to be a man, lived a completely sinless life, died and brutal death in which he assumed penalty for our sins, rose again on the third day in victory over sin and death, and ascended to sit at the right hand of the Father in heaven.
There is no one like Jesus!
So just as God was extremely prescriptive with Israel on where they could worship and how they could worship in ancient times, Jesus is the fulfillment of all of it in his identity and fulfilled mission. We don’t need to follow a recipe or go to a place because we know the person. We know the Saviour. We know the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Jesus.
Acts 4:12 provides that there is no other name than Jesus, given under heaven, by which we must be saved. Only Jesus. No other name. No other way. And Jesus can be worshiped everywhere. All the time. Right now.
Whom are you worshiping?