home speaking schedule bookstore contact

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Jesus and the Samaritan Woman – New Way of Worship -- Part 4


The Samaritan woman has been honest with Jesus about the man she is now living with. She may have gotten uneasy because Jesus knew all about her sinful life, so she changes the subject. “Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet. Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.” This Samaritan woman first saw Jesus as a Jew.  Now she sees Him as a Prophet of God.  As Jesus speaks His word to her, she is growing in the knowledge of Him.

When the kingdom of Israel divided, Jereboam, king of the northern tribes, built a rival temple on Mount Gerizim. (see 1 Kings 12: 24-32) Jews and Samaritans had a long-standing argument over which of the temples was the true place of worship. She wanted Jesus to answer this for her. Perhaps she wanted to know where God can be found!  Because of the two temples, there is some confusion.

Jesus gives her the answer. It is not the temple in Jerusalem or the one on Mount Gerizim. Jesus will teach her a “new” way of worship. No more outward ritual. Now a person is to worship within in Spirit and in Truth. “Believe Me, Woman, 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 Spirit and in Truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is Spirit and His worshipers must worship Him in Spirit and in Truth.” John 4: 21-24

Please allow me to break this answer of Jesus down for you.

Woman

Jesus didn't call  this Samaritan woman by name. He called her “woman.” Adam when he was holy named his God-given bride “woman.” The “woman” in Genesis was also holy because she came out of a sinless, holy man. It was after the original sin that Woman had a name change to Eve.

Woman is an honorable title. It is a title of respect and honor. It means “queen.” The first Woman was the bride of a king – Adam. The law of first mention applies here. The first Adam called his holy bride “Woman.” The Second and Last Adam (Jesus) called His Bride “Woman.” Jesus referred to women many times in the New Testament but He only used “Woman” as a title five times in the Gospel of John and once in the Gospel of Luke. As Adam called his God-given bride “Woman,” Jesus calls His God-given Bride “Woman.” When Jesus used that title in addressing a particular woman, He was speaking to His Bride who is made holy by His righteousness.

  •  Luke 13:12: “Woman, you are loosed from your infirmity.” Those who are set free belong to King Jesus as His Bride-to-be.
  • John 2:4: “Woman, what does your concern have to do with Me? My hour has not yet come.” Jesus is speaking to His earthly mother who was the first to know that her Son is the Messiah before He was even born. She too is a part of His Bride-to-be. She was with her Son Jesus from the beginning to the end.
  • John 4:21: “Woman, believe Me, the hour is coming and now is when you will neither on this mountain, nor in Jerusalem worship the Father.” Jesus is speaking to the Samaritan woman at the well to whom He had just revealed Himself as the Messiah. This woman believed in Him and brought a whole town to Jesus. She too is a part of His Bride-to-be. Christ's Bride will worship in Spirit and in Truth. God is Spirit and Truth and the Holy Spirit is the One who will lead us into all Truth.
  • John 19:26: “Woman, behold your son.” Again Jesus is talking to His earthly mother. He is giving John -- the disciple who drew closest to Jesus when He walked the earth -- to His earthly mother as her son. The Bride of Christ is made up of males (sons) and females (daughters) who truly believe in Jesus and His finished work on the cross, and worship Him in Spirit and in Truth. We are His soon-to-be Bride.
  • John 20:15: Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?” Jesus was speaking to Mary Magdalene. She was weeping because she could not find Jesus after He had died and was buried. She was seeking Him but couldn't find Him! She didn't realize that He had been resurrected from the dead. Jesus called her “Woman” first and then called her by her name “Mary.” When He called her by name, she recognized Him. Mary Magdalene was also a committed follower of Jesus who followed Him right to the end. She too is a part of His Bride-to-be.
  • In light of all of this, I can only come to the conclusion that Jesus was referring to His Bride when He used the title “Woman” in speaking to these  particular women. Jesus, like Adam when he was first created, is holy and will have a holy Bride based upon His righteousness, not her own. The first Adam's bride was also holy because of his righteousness. She was formed from a piece of a holy man as Christ's Bride comes from a holy Man and is shaped and formed by Him into a "new" creation. All of these women believed in Jesus and followed Him. He says, “Believe Me.”  He wants her to know and trust His Word that there will be a "new" way of worship. 
A Time is Coming

Jesus is speaking about the time of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit after His death, resurrection and ascension to the Father. God is Spirit and Truth. Therefore, true worshipers will worship God in Spirit and in Truth (Jesus). Jesus had to die to pay the penalty for sin and make us holy so the Holy Spirit could reside in us. The blood of Jesus cleansed us of all unrighteousness in preparation of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon flesh. What is holy cannot reside in an unholy place.   Jesus had the fullness of the Holy Spirit. He gave us the Holy Spirit without measure. However, we still have sin.  Sin reduces the power of the Holy Spirit in us.  The more we allow His cleansing, the greater and fuller Jesus and the Holy Spirit reside in us.

When the Holy Spirit is poured out upon us, we will then worship in Spirit and in Truth from the heart. Without Jesus and the Holy Spirit, our spirit is dead in sin. In order to truly know God, we must know Jesus.

Father – a “New” Name used for God

There are many names in the Older Testament for God, but none as intimate as “Father.” Jesus called God His Father. There is no love that can match the love of a parent for a child except the agape love of Our Heavenly Father for His Son and for His sons and daughters who believe in His Son. The other names for God in the Older Testament revealed a particular character or trait of God, but Jesus' name for His Father revealed the love and close intimate relationship that He and the Father shared, and that those who love Him share also. Jesus instituted a “new” Law – the Law of love. God is our Heavenly Father who loves us as He loved His only Begotten Son.

Jesus didn't call God El Shaddai, or Jehovah, or Jehovah Jireh, etc. He is so intimately connected to the Father in love and purpose that they are One. No one called God “Father” until Jesus His only Begotten Son. It was prophesied in the Older Testament that God is Israel's “Father” but no one addressed God by that name in the Older Testament.   God called Himself the Father of Israel (see Jeremiah 31:9), and in the prophetic Psalm 89, it says, "He will call out to Me, 'You are My Father, my God, the rock of my salvation." v26  Jesus did this in fulfillment of all of the Older Testament prophecies. He is the only pure, spiritual Son of God.  The prophet Isaiah said that God is the "Father" of the Israelites but the Israelites didn't address Him with that title. (see Isaiah 64:8)  This was reserved for Jesus.  Luke 10:22:  "All things have been delivered to Me by My Father, and no one knows who the Son is except the Father, and who the Father is except the Son, and to whom the Son wishes to reveal Him."  Jesus and the Father are One.  He is in the Father and the Father is in Him.  Only the holy Son can reveal His holy Father in heaven.

Jesus made it clear throughout the Gospels that God is our spiritual Father.
Jesus calls God Father, and He wants us to know Him as our Heavenly Father who is as connected to us as He is to His Son Jesus. Because of Jesus, we become the Lord's spiritual sons and daughters.
(Galatians 3:26; 2 Corinthians 6:18) Before Jesus, God had not been reproduced – He had no pure, spiritual Son. After Jesus, God has many sons and daughters who are made righteous through the blood sacrifice of His Son.

Worship Neither on this Mountain or in Jerusalem – a “new” place of worship

This woman is seeking the truth. She has been taught that God's presence is in the temple on Mount Gerizim. No doubt she is surprised at Jesus' answer. She is focused on the place of worship, but Jesus wants her to focus on the heart of worship.

Jesus wants this Samaritan woman to know that a time is coming when the place where people worship isn't important. The spirit of worship will come from the heart. Jesus' death on the cross and His resurrection and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit supplied a “new” temple in the hearts of those who worship in Spirit and in Truth. He arose to establish a new and better temple – an eternal temple in the hearts of believing humanity. The temples made of stone were destroyed. Jesus is the Living Temple of God in the flesh and in the spiritual Promised Land in heaven. He was not destroyed and lives eternally in the heavenly throne room, as we will live eternally with Him. This Temple is made by the power of God not man. The temples of the Older Testament were a foreshadowing of the reality in Christ and the hearts of His followers. Instead of a temple, Jesus calls it “My Father's house.” This is a more intimate name for His dwelling place. The Bible says that we who belong to Christ are to be built up into a spiritual house for the dwelling place of God.

Jesus could have answered this Samaritan woman very differently. He could have quoted scripture that said that God's dwelling place was to be in Jerusalem. But Jesus tells this woman that God can be found in the hearts of humanity through Spirit and Truth. God will be everywhere not in a set place. And those who have Jesus and the love of God in their hearts – no matter what nation, tribe or tongue – will be in the eternal New Jerusalem forever. In the New holy Jerusalem, God won't see Jews and Gentiles. He won't see denominations. He will see ONE NEW MAN just as He began with one new man in Adam. When Adam was created, there were no Jews or Gentiles, males or females just one newly created holy, spiritual man with flesh. All offspring were in this one man. All spiritual offspring are in the One New Man – the Body of Christ. It will be the same in the New spiritual Jerusalem in heaven. We will all be One with the Father, Son and Holy Spirit -- one "new" man.

After Jesus died and was resurrected, the earthly temple in Jerusalem was destroyed. When Jesus was resurrected, the true and Living Temple arose. The earthly temple was the “heart” of Jerusalem. God's presence in the shekinah glory was there. Jesus, the Eternal and Living Temple where the presence of God resides, is now in the hearts of His followers. He is the very presence of God in our hearts and minds who is living and active. With Jesus and the Holy Spirit within us, we are the eternal dwelling place of God.

No comments:

Post a Comment