Friday, August 16, 2019

Spirit, Truth & Emotions?

But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father seeks such as these to worship him. -John 4:23

Have you ever considered what Jesus meant by worshiping in spirit and truth? Weather people consciously put it this way or not, I dare say many equate this with emotion. We see this most predominantly, but not exclusively, in the contemporary worship movement. It’s all designed to provoke a positive feeling, and those who go are often motivated by the emotional boost that they offer. However, if catering to our feelings is our primary goal, are we not worshiping self, instead of God? That is definitely not worshiping in anything resembling truth. I also contend that if truth is a qualifier for worship, emotion cannot be, for the simple fact that emotion is not necessarily truth. This is why I say that.

• Facts and truth are constant, but emotions are inconsistent. Feelings often swing back and forth with the seasons of our lives. So how can emotions be an absolute truth?

• Emotions are easily manipulated. When a manipulative person strikes, they always attack your emotions. Unless you believe manipulative people are always right; emotions can't always be truth.

• Fear is an emotion, so if emotions were always true, all our fears would always materialize. That is clearly not the case, so emotions are not necessarily truth.

 We can just as easily have an emotional reaction to a lie as we can a fact. How can we call emotions truth, when they are sometimes based on inaccurate information. 
Consider this also. Most of the people who have betrayed you, which you took so personally, were probably just following their emotions blindly. It works the other way to, when people accuse you of betrayal.

Don't think that I'm promoting the opposite extreme of emotions are inherently false. Or that I'm telling you to suppress your emotions as stoicism teaches. I'm saying our feelings need to be tempered in spirit and truth, not replace spirit, and truth. That worship needs to be about honoring God, and not our own feelings.

A woman attacking a man with words, so he attacks back with his fists.
click to enlarge