Updated: Jul 14, 2020
The House of God is a place of worship, fellowship, and engagement. This spectrum has caused some to treat it as a circus platform, where ministers behave like performers. Theatrics is the feel good fuel and playing church is a normality. The primary reason Jesus flipped tables in the Temple was because a space that was dedicated to worship was occupied with distracting activity. This is why He defended His actions by saying, "My house shall be called a house of prayer" (Matthew 21).
Reverence is key. Without it our worship and service is dulled. Playing church, performing at church, or un-repented sin only dulls the atmosphere and can hinder a move of God. However, Reverence does not mean having a somber, lifeless, joyless attitude while attending church. We come to the house of the Lord with gladness (Psalm 122:1), with joy (Psalm 84:1-2 ), with dancing and shouts of praise (Psalm 150), and most importantly with a heart of expectation!
Reverence is to approach anything associated with the worship and glory of God with deep respect and admiration (Psalm 89:7). If it is preaching or teaching, reverence is with a pure heart and humility. If it is ministering worship, it is with direct focus on His Glory. If it is through service it is without complaining. If it is to receive, it is to open your heart to God and become engaged with a holy expectation.
Playing church and a lack of reverence are symptoms of conformity (Matthew 15:8). Breaking the monotony is not in a performance, it is in the heart of truly surrendered worshipers (John 4:23). On the platform and in the pew when there is heart surrendered worship and a holy expectation there will be a Move of God. The Glory of God fills the house and His fire consumes sin, breaks chains, heals the sick, gives peace to the weary, joy to the downcast, revival to the conformed, and breakthrough to the warriors!"
NIV Study Bible, 2011, Grand Rapids: Zondervan.