Worship can get carried away. Sometimes that’s ok; sometimes it isn’t.
I have had moments of worship in my life that if others saw or heard it they would no doubt be offended. I have sat through many other people’s worship that I deemed offensive.
Is our offense at worship merely personal preferences, or is there truly offensive worship?
2 Samuel 6 contains two instances of people doing “bad worship.”
The first is when the Ark of the Covenant was being brought back and Uzzah reaches out to steady the Ark that shifted on the cart. Seems like a logical thing to do, might have even just been a reactionary movement.
God struck him dead. The New American Standard says, “God struck him down there for his irreverence.” He violated the rules of worship for Israel.
Later, when the ark is being brought into Jerusalem, David dances before the procession and his wife despises him. “How glorious was the king of Israel today, who uncovered himself today in the eyes of the handmaids of his servants, as one of the vain fellows shamelessly uncovereth himself!”
In the first instance God is the one who is “offended.” In the second it’s a guy’s wife. The passage makes it clear that David’s wife was wrong in her judgment as she went childless after that.
Although it is possible to offend others by your worship, it doesn’t really matter. It’s just an opinion.
However, when we violate God’s rules for worship, now we might get in trouble.
It is interesting how many Christians have justifications for why it’s OK to violate God’s rules for worship in the church. Read the NT and note how often we violate God’s rules on this issue.
Take fasting as one example. The Bible says that when you fast, don’t tell anyone, don’t make a show out of it, go out of your way to show how non-fasty you are.
Then note that we are entering the period of the church calendar called Lent, where everyone and their mother has to tell everyone that they are fasting and what they are fasting from.
Hmmm. That’s just one example of many.
Following God’s rules for worship is a really good idea. he is the one being worshiped, after all. Supposedly. Yet when we get interested more in our ideas on worship, it seems we worship ourselves more than Him. This is a bad idea.
It is a good idea to lighten up on how others worship if there are no biblical commands being broken by the worshiper. Lighten up. So they like different music, chill.
Worship, ultimately, is for God. It’s adoration and thanks for Him being who He is. He doesn’t need it. He’s not desperate for it. But He is also clear about what He considers to be true worship. I think we should be interested in that.
He wants to know if we are truly interested in Him, or just in us feeling special about ourselves. You decide.