…In Truth (#worshipshort)

God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”
John 4:24 NKJV

The first sphere our worship is to take place in is “spirit” and the second is “truth.”  We will consider the second of these in this meditation.

There are two basic forms of “truth” as it is both communicated and perceived by us as humans.  One way to define these is as “linear” and “non-linear.”

Linear truth is the form expressed in written and verbal language.  It is linear because the details being communicated follow in succession one after the other in a “train of thought” or “line of reasoning.”  This is the form of truth you are engaging with right now as you read this post.  At this point you know part of what I am seeking to express and shortly you will know more as you continue on in this linear form of communication.

Non-linear truth, however, is a form where the particulars contained in or concerning a certain matter exist simultaneously and may be comprehended all at once.  This form of communication is generally sensory in nature and doesn’t involve the use of linear language.  If you were to look at the header picture at the top of this post, for instance, a multitude of particulars would be communicated to you all at once without any language involved.  This is why it is said, “A picture is worth a thousand words.”

Both linear and non-linear forms of communication have their unique advantages and also certain limitations, and so the best way of expressing truth often employs them both.  For instance, this is why we put captions under pictures and look at maps to augment driving directions.  In either case, the perception of truth is enhanced by linear and non-linear forms of communication synergizing together to give a more complete understanding of what is knowable and true.

These dynamics have a spiritual application as well.

God is the embodiment of all Truth.  In His Person, all of the particulars of wisdom and knowledge exist simultaneously in perfect unity, fullness, and living reality.

If all the truths contained in and concerning God were to be expressed in linear, written form, the entire universe would most likely not be able to contain the volumes that would be written.  Concerning the earthly life of Jesus alone, John said, “Jesus did many other things as well.  If every one of them were written down, I suppose that even the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written.” (John 21:25 NIV)  We can extrapolate from there what it would take to contain a linear expression of all of the wisdom, wonders, works, and ways of God from eternity to eternity!

The God of Truth, however, is not merely a vast conglomeration of linear expressions of Truth.  Rather, in Him all Truth exists simultaneously in one, integrated, all-at-once, non-linear Reality.  Within the shoreless Ocean of Truth, whom God is, an infinitude of particulars of wisdom and knowledge “swim”, interrelate, and may be expressed both linearly and non-linearly, but all Truth is essentially and inherently one in His Person.

For us to worship God “in truth”, then, we must not only encounter and engage with the linear truths of God, but also be led through them to behold and bow down before the non-linear God of Truth.  This process begins with the meditation (“grazing”) of our heart upon the truths of God as they are revealed through the written/spoken Word of God.  It consummates in the contemplation (“gazing”) of our heart upon the God of Truth as He is revealed by the indwelling/overshadowing Spirit of God.

As we enter into worship in this way, we will become like Job who not only knew God linearly (“My ears had heard of you…”), but also came to know Him non-linearly (“but now my eyes have seen you.”) which resulted in Job’s ultimate transformation (“Therefore I despise myself and repent in dust and ashes.”  Job 42:4-5)

The highest, purest, and most transformative form of worship “in truth” involves these dual dynamics and this progressive development.  As we enter into worship, then, may we allow the linear rays of light that radiate out of the Scriptures to lead us to gaze upon the non-linear Source of Light in Whom all Truth abides in resplendent glory!  Then we will truly become the kind of worshipers the Father seeks, who worship not only in “spirit”, but also in “TRUTH!”


Next: Get Real (#worshipshort)

Previous: …In Spirit (#worshipshort)

About David Bolton

Following Him who is the Way; learning of Him who is the Truth; living by Him who is the Life. - John 14:6
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5 Responses to …In Truth (#worshipshort)

  1. errollmulder says:

    Nailed it, as usual, David. Thanks for the balance.

    I also like the ‘grazing’ and ‘gazing’ bit, and want to share some thoughts about that some time in the future with our house group. I think most ‘Christians’ today are so bombarded by social media, even so-called Christian media with ‘instant solutions’ to problems, that they have lost the art of grazing and gazing altogether. Something I also have to work on constantly, personally.

    Liked by 1 person

    • David Bolton says:

      Thank you, Erroll. I agree that “grazing and gazing” is becoming a lost art and that our “instant solution”-social-media world is hugely to blame. It has even been proven scientifically that our brains are being rewired by our constant use of digital media. I can certainly see its effects in my own life (even wrote about it years ago here) and in the overall lack of spiritual depth in the Body of Christ. We need to contend for these things more than ever. Thanks for your encouragement unto this end!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Allan Halton says:

    This is a new thought to me, David, I’ll be ruminating on it.
    I wonder if Paul’s words in 1 Corinthians 13 can be considered this linear/non-linear way.
    “For we know in part… but when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.”

    Like

    • David Bolton says:

      Thanks for your comment, Allan, and for bringing in that portion of Scripture to consider in this way.

      Certainly “now we know in part”, and that partial knowledge comes through incomplete linear and non-linear knowledge that we have of Him in this age (i.e. from Scripture, Creation, the Incarnation, Holy Spirit ministries/gifts, Sovereign acts, spiritual senses, etc…) When we are with the Lord in the age to come, however, a perfect and complete, non-linear knowledge of Him will define our reality. We will see Him “face to face” and “know even as we are known”, which is certainly non-linear in nature. (That’s how we are known by Him now!)

      Maybe that is also why Paul said in that passage that “where there is knowledge, it will pass away”, and that in the sense of the limitations of linear knowledge in this age being overwhelmed and superceded by the perfections of non-linear knowledge in the coming age. Just a thought.

      Thanks again for stimulating further meditation along this line. If you (or anyone else) have anything to add, please do so! I’d be interested and glad to hear! “As iron sharpens iron…” 🙂

      All blessings!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Lloyd says:

    Amen, David!

    Liked by 1 person

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