A. W. Tozer, in Whatever Happened to Worship, talks about the true fear of God and its counterfeits:
. . . [W]e are talking about the awe and the reverence of a loving and holy God. That kind of a fear of God is a spiritual thing and can only be brought by the Presence of God. . . .
The Presence of God in our midst–bringing a sense of Godly fear and reverence–this is largely missing today.
You cannot induce it by soft organ music and light streaming through beautifully designed windows. You cannot induce it by holding up a biscuit and claiming that it is God. You cannot induce it by any kind or any amount of mumbo-jumbo. . . .
A true fear of God is a beautiful thing, for it is worship, it is love, it is veneration. It is a high moral happiness because God is. . . .
True worship is to be so personally and hopelessly in love with God that the idea of a transfer of affection never even remotely exists.
That is the meaning of the fear of God.
Because worship is largely missing, do you know what we are doing? We are doing our best to sew up that rent veil in the temple. We use artificial means to try to induce some kind of worship.
I think the devil in hell must be laughing, and I think God must be grieving, for there is no fear of God before our eyes. (pp. 32-34)