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So where do we worship now?

    In recent days churches across the world are shut down or at best meeting underground in homes. The question is then, when the pandemic orders are redacted, where shall we worship? Do we return to the church we were attending prior to the quarantine; do we continue to meet in homes or online? What is the answer. When examining this question, does it matter to us that the church that we were so faithful to attend just buckled under pressure of the government and the spirit of fear and locked the world out? Does that affect our hearts, our belief in or our trust in what the pastor says? I say yes. I say that we absolutely must be aware that the person that we listen to teach us the gospel may be engaged in the fear of man and may have just “shown their hand” as it were. So if it bothers you at all that the people who drill into your head that Jesus is the healer and that we obey the Lord our God just ran in fear of a government suggestion in which the devil was active, then you need to reevaluate your worshiping of the Almighty. 

    In the time of Jesus’ ministry, there were two groups of people who fought vehemently about where they were to attend synagogue, pay tithes, make sacrifices, etc. They were the Jews and the Samaritans. The Jews believed that the only place from which God would accept sacrifices and worship was at the temple in Jerusalem on Mt. Moriah. The Samaritans believed that it was in Samaria at Mt. Gerizim. In fact, Jesus met a woman at a well in Samaria in John 4 and she brought this dispute up to Him for His opinion. Jesus responded to her in John 4:24

But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth; for the father is seeking such to worship Him. God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and in truth.”

Here Jesus- God in the flesh says that the time of only going to one place to worship the Father was over because true worshipers would now be able to worship Him in spirit and in truth. That meant then and it means now that to worship God, one will worship Him where His word is being spoken and they will do it with their spirit toward His spirit. At that moment in time, God set up heart to heart worship. No longer was God some distant being that was so high above us that we could not possibly have an intimate connection with Him. Now He was right in our face, right in our heart. 

    For so long, there was always an actual building to go to, whether in Jerusalem or elsewhere, that the worshipers of God paid their tributes to the Almighty, but now Jesus was changing it up…. did that mean that God changed? Isn’t He the same, yesterday, today, and forever? The answer is yes He is, and no God didn’t change. Look at Deuteronomy chapter 12:

    Deuteronomy 12:5- 

“But you shall seek the place where the Lord your God chooses, out of all your tribes, to put His name for His dwelling place; and there you shall go."

    Verses 6 & 7 go on to explain that the place where they were to “go” was where they were to take their sacrifices, tithes, firstborns, and break bread with the Lord. This is where God wanted to be worshiped. So way back in the old testament, the heart of God was that wherever He chose and placed His name as His dwelling place- that is where worship would be conducted. Incidentally the reason that before Jesus came there were specific buildings was because the Spirit of the Living God was not living inside of people. Essentially, “His name” was not on people as it is today. John 14:23 says:

 “Jesus answered and said to him,’ if anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him. He who does not love Me does not keep My words; and the word which you hear is not Mine but the Fathers who sent Me.’"

  Jesus clearly stated that those who love Him keep His word and it is those who keep His word that He and the Father dwell inside. Therefore, wherever a true follower, a disciple, of Jesus goes, there the Lord may be worshiped! That can be in the bathroom, in the car, in the office, at the grocery store, at the bowling alley, on the back of a horse, you get the point…. anywhere there is a real disciple of Jesus, worship can exist. But how does this knowledge influence our decision about where to go to church after the Covid-19?  That’s simple….. look at the Lord’s direction in Deuteronomy again: “you shall seek the place where the Lord your God chooses….” We must ask God where He wants us to go to worship Him. We must believe that He gives us this wisdom and then we must act on what He tells us. Anything other than this is precisely what the Lord says not to do in Deuteronomy 12:8-

    “You shall not at all do as we are doing here today-every man doing whatever is right in his own eyes”

Seek God for this, and every answer, do what He instructs you and you will walk securely without fear of evil!

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