There is a fleshly mind and a spiritual mind (Colossians 2: 18, 1: 9). There is a will of the flesh, and a will which is of God working by His Spirit (John 1:13; Philippians 2:13). There is a worship which is a satisfying of the flesh, because it is in the power of what flesh can do (Colossians 2: 18, 23), and a worship of God which is in the Spirit. It is this worship Jesus came to make possible, and to realize in us, by giving a new spirit in our inmost part, and then, within that, God’s Holy Spirit.
‘In Spirit and in Truth.’ Such a worship in Spirit is worship in Truth. Just as the words in Spirit do not mean internal as contrasted with external observances, but Spiritual, inwrought by God’s Spirit, as opposed to what man’s natural power can effect, so the words in Truth do not mean hearty, sincere, upright. In all the worship of the Old Testament saints, they knew that God sought Truth in the inward parts; they sought Him with their whole hearts, and most uprightly, and yet they attained not to that worship in Spirit and Truth, which Jesus brought us when He rent the veil of the flesh. Truth here means the substance, the reality, the actual possession of all that the worship of God implies, both in what it demands and what it promises. John speaks of Jesus as ‘the Only Begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.’ And he adds, ‘For the Law was given by Moses; grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.’ If we take truth as opposed to falsehood, the law of Moses was just as true as the Gospel of Jesus; they both came from God. But if we understand what it means, that the law gave only a shadow of good things to come, and that Christ brought us the things themselves, their very substance, we see how He was full of truth, because He was Himself the Truth, the reality, the very Life and Love and Power of God imparting itself to us. We then also see how it is only a worship in Spirit that can be a worship in Truth, in the actual enjoyment of that Divine Power, which is Christ’s own life and fellowship with the Father, revealed and maintained within us by the Holy Spirit.