40 Days of Discipline

40 Days of Discipline: Day 17 – Worship


Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”

The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water so that I won’t get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water.”

He told her, “Go, call your husband and come back.”

“I have no husband,” she replied.

Jesus said to her, “You are right when you say you have no husband. The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have just said is quite true.”

“Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet. Our ancestors worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.”

“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. (John 4:13-23)


Over the next four days we will focus on the Discipline of Worship.  We will continue our theme of considering the Disciplines through the lens of love.

Making a strong connection between love and worship should not be very difficult.  What is more difficult is to rescue worship from traditional church divisions based on style preferences and from limiting worship to the confines of church services and concerts.  As we consider this Discipline we will seek to come back to the heart of worship as a songwriter has said.   Again, our deliberation will be based on some powerful passages from the Bible; the first being an excerpt from the encounter between Jesus and the Samaritan woman at the well (see passage above).

As always, Jesus gives us the greatest insights on the Disciplines.  Please prayerfully read the passage and answer the questions below.

Today’s Questions for comments:

  • What is the essence of what Jesus told the Samaritan woman about worship?
  • How does this inspire you to practice the Discipline of Worship?

Make this entire week a special week of worship (recognizing God’s worth).



8 thoughts on “40 Days of Discipline: Day 17 – Worship

  1. I believe Jesus is saying that worship is not about going through the motions, in a place or format, but about an attitude of the heart, requiring personal knowledge of the object of one’s worship. He is saying that true, authentic worship requires the revelation of truth, the truth of the immeasurable gift of salvation as the ultimate expression of God’s love for us. He is saying that such revelation only comes about through the Holy Spirit, and that it is by the Father’s will and not of our own. I believe Jesus is saying that true worship is ultimately our response to God’s love for us, as demonstrated by what He has done for us in rescuing us.

    I also believe that in telling her this and in this way, He is revealing truth to her personally and directly, offering her salvation, and teling her that the Father has chosen her – what a glorious day!

  2. I think Jesus is telling the woman that worship is a form of communication with God on a spiritual level, that can occur anytime and anywhere. Some people worship only on Sundays or Saturdays, and only in their church. They limit themselves when it comes to worship.
    Worship of our Lord should be constant and expressed anywhere and everywhere we feel the Spirit of God move within us to do so.

  3. What is the essence of what Jesus told the Samaritan woman about worship?
    Jesus revealed to her who she should worship as He revealed Himself as the Messiah and the giver of living water. He also revealed to her the reason for worship as the Messiah is the one to bring salvation – “salvation is from the Jews”. Jesus also revealed to her how she should worship – “in Spirit and in truth”.
    How does this inspire me to practice the discipline of worship?
    When I think of this story of the Samaritan woman at the well it amazes me. Jesus “needed” to go through Samaria for this special appointment with the Samaritan woman at the well. This unknown Samaritan woman who was an outcast in her own town had the privilege of this intimate conversation with Jesus and He preached to her one of His most powerful “sermons” on worship. He pursued this Gentile woman for her salvation and for the salvation of her whole village. In the same way the Lord pursues and has pursued all of us for our salvation. He died for me while I was still His enemy. How could I not worship?

  4. What is the essence of what Jesus told the Samaritan woman about worship?
    I think Jesus was talking about a religious tradition when he said “You Samaritans worship what you do not know…” Many religions base their concept of God (or Gods) on the mysteries of the earth, including things like weather, the elements and ancestors who have passed on. In this way, they are unsure of the results to be had, and unsure of whether the worship must be tied to a specific location, or specific practices. If you’re basing your faith on mystery, then you will be anxiously pursuing some spiritual gratification without true knowledge of what you need to be doing. Like the water in the well as opposed to living water, you have to keep coming back to the physical location, knowing full well that you will have to return again and again, never truly being satisfied. It seems to me that Jesus was saying worshiping The One True God means not having the search and the mystery anymore, and not having to go to a specific location. Knowing the ultimate source of satisfaction means going directly to the source from where true satisfaction comes. Because it is a heart thing and not a physical thing, it does not involve going to a specific location, but rather having that knowledge that tells you where to look.

    How does this inspire you to practice the Discipline of Worship?
    This inspires me to remind myself daily that it doesn’t matter where I am, I can offer my worship to God. If I know the One True God, then I have access to Him wherever I am, and I can offer my worship there.

  5. To worship in spirit I connect with being ‘poor in spirit’, TOTALLY and UTTERLY destitute before God in spirit, which is the appropriate and pleasing position and why such a person is blessed and theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven. To worship in truth is to give worth to God’s truth, His principles and promises, i.e. elevate His truth about ourselves in Christ, above our feelings and circumstances by faith which will enable us to stand firm and bring honour and glory to Him in this world when we will have trouble. The Father’s Son was with the Samaritan woman in truth and love, drawing her into a personal relationship with Him, the ultimate expression of love known to humanity.

  6. Many thanks commentators! Your insights have certainly brought us back to the heart of worship.

  7. What is the essence of what Jesus told the Samaritan woman about worship?
    Jesus’ comment about a spring of water within us conveys an image of the Holy Spirit for me. Building the premise of our bodies being the temple. Later He tells her that neither this mountain or Jerusalem would be the designated temple.
    How does this inspire you to practice the Discipline of Worship?
    I needed the reminder that worship isn’t about the music, the church, the Pastor, the format but my heart. It’s about how I fellowship with a holy God that loves me.

  8. What is the essence of what Jesus told the Samaritan woman about worship?

    I believe Jesus was telling the woman and us that worship is not to be done with a sense that the worshipper must be confined to a place and time. Worship is to be expressed with a sense of freedom, with a knowledge that, because of the relationship that exist between us and Him, in light of what he has done, we are free to express our love, joy, gratitude, praise, where ever and whenever we are motivated to do so.
    How does this inspire you to practice the Discipline of Worship? I am reminded that worship is not something I do at a specific time or place; it’s not an aspect of my relationship with Christ that is to be compartmentalized. It’s an active ongoing part of my relationship with Him.

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