John 4:23

John 4:23

But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers,
&c.] The worshippers of the true God, and who worship in a right manner, whether Jews or Samaritans, or of whatsoever nation:

shall worship the Father;
the one true God, the Father of spirits, and of all flesh living:

in spirit;
in opposition to all carnal conceptions of him, as if he was a corporeal being, or circumscribed in some certain place, dwelling in temples made with hands, or was to be worshipped with men's hands; and in distinction from the carnal worship of the Jews, which lay greatly in the observation of carnal ordinances: and this shows they should not worship with their bodies only, for bodily exercise profiteth little; but with their souls or spirits, with their whole hearts engaged therein; and by, and under the influence and assistance of the Spirit of God, without whom men cannot perform worship, neither prayer, praise, preaching, or hearing, aright:

and in truth;
in opposition to hypocrisy, with true hearts, in the singleness, sincerity, and integrity of their souls; and in distinction from Jewish ceremonies, which were only shadows, and had not the truth and substance of things in them; and according to the word of truth, the Gospel of salvation; and in Christ, who is the truth, the true tabernacle, in, and through whom accent is had to God, prayer is made to him, and every part of religious worship with acceptance: so Enoch is said, (ajvwqb xlp) , "to worship in truth", before the Lord, in the Targums of Jonathan and Jerusalem, in ( Genesis 5:24 ) . And it may be that the worship of all the three persons in the Godhead, as more distinctly performed under the Gospel dispensation, is here intended: for the words may be thus read, "shall worship the Father, with the Spirit", and with the truth; so the preposition (en) , is rendered in ( Ephesians 6:2 ) ; and elsewhere; and then the sense is, they shall "worship the Father"; the first person in the Trinity, who is the Father of Christ, his only begotten Son, and together and equally with him "the Spirit"; the holy Spirit, as the Ethiopic version reads; and Nonnus calls it the divine Spirit: and the rather he may be thought to be intended, since it follows in ( John 4:24 ) , "the Spirit is God"; for so the words lie in the Greek text; and are so rendered in the Vulgate Latin, Syriac, and Ethiopic versions; and therefore is the proper object of religious worship, whose temples the saints are, with whom they have communion, to whom they pray, and in whose name they are baptized: and also together "with the truth"; with Christ the way, the truth, and the life; who is the true God, and eternal life; and who is equally to be worshipped as the Father and Spirit, as he is by the angels in heaven, and by the saints on earth; who pray unto him, trust in him, and are also baptized in his name, as in the name of the other two persons: and the rather this may be thought to be the sense, since Christ is speaking, not of the manner, but of the object of worship, in the preceding verse:

for the Father seeketh such to worship him;
it being agreeable to him to be worshipped in the manner, as above related; and his desire is, that the Son and Spirit should be honoured equally as himself; and such worshippers he has found, having made them such, both among the Jews and Gentiles; and such only are acceptable to him; see ( Philippians 3:3 ) .

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