Worship Leaders — Samaritans and Syncretism
Jesus, when speaking to the Samaritan woman, made several astonishing statements about true worship. He said, “You Samaritans, do not know what you worship!” Yet they thought they did. Digging deeper we can come to understand why Christ made this bold statement. History reveals the startling truth about the origins of the Samaritans And this has great significance to us today. Ezra in writing about the time of the Assyrian captivity explains the nature of the Samaritan people and how they “did not know the God of the land” of Israel. The Assyrians to resolve the dilemma sent a priest, a worship leader, from the Israelites who had been exiled from Samaria, to teach the people. The people in turn appointed priests in every region, but were they true worship leaders, teachers of the truth?
Worship Leaders — The Jew’s Advantage
Jesus affirmed that the Jews knew about the true worship of God, and the apostle Paul explains the advantage they had over the rest of the nations because they had the “logion,” the oracles of God. The author of Hebrews (perhaps Paul) explains further that the priest, the worship leader, is one who having the oracles of God is able to discern between good and evil. He is one who hears the Word and obeys, acting on the authority of Christ to perform his duties. He is a leader who is obedient to the Father, having an authentic connection to the source of truth.
Worship Leaders — Reality or Delusion
Jesus made it clear that true worshippers must worship in spirit and truth, according to reality. Jesus’ dinner at Simon’s house highlighted the connection between our affectionate relationship with God and true worship. While Paul warns Christians about counterfeit worship leaders, he admonishes those who would lead God’s people to speak the truth in love. So as true worship leaders we must examine ourselves and ask the important questions. Are we following the Samaritan approach as leaders, mixing delusion and deceit with reality? Or, are we obeying God in spirit and truth, and leading others to do so, too?
Worship in Spirit and Truth
Christmas with the Irish Rovers
Who was the Original Christmas Grinch