This psalm gives the reader a powerful imagery. It depicts the effect of the breaking forth of God’s power upon the unredeemed world. After the Exodus and the deliverance of God’s people — in the Passover and by Jesus’ death on the cross— the Jewish people as well as Christian believers were sent out to conquer the spiritual and physical land. As the physical promised land the Israelites were supposed to conquer was filled with giants, the spiritual land which the Christians are to conquer is the land of sickness, death, demons, and sin.
Both Jews and Christians are sent to show the power and love of God to non-believers, and to carry God’s presence and light into darkness. The glory carried by a believer who enters into pagan territory is powerful — so powerful that mountains of trouble and grief tremble and quake. Seas of sickness, sin, and ignorance seek to escape. Why? Because God lives in the middle of His people. As the saying goes, “God With us” Jews and Christians have God’s presence in earthen vessels. Think of how glorious this is!
The earth -- which has been pining for the redemption of the sons of man-- saw the earthly redeemed Israel and was in awe! The people carried God’s glory! Consider how much the faith-filled church, an entirely new creation -- redeemed not from an earthly oppressor but from the devil, sin, and sickness itself—even more portrays God’s glory.
1When Israel went out of Egypt, the house of Jacob from a people of strange language; 2Judah was his sanctuary, and Israel his dominion.
3The sea saw it, and fled: Jordan was driven back.
4The mountains skipped like rams, and the little hills like lambs.
5What ailed thee, O thou sea, that thou fleddest? thou Jordan, that thou wast driven back?
6Ye mountains, that ye skipped like rams; and ye little hills, like lambs?
7Tremble, thou earth, at the presence of the Lord, at the presence of the God of Jacob; 8Which turned the rock into a standing water, the flint into a fountain of waters.