Numbers 10:35 explains that as the children of Israel traveled from Egypt to the Promised land they would follow the cloud or the fire as it rested over the Ark of the Covenant. Whenever the ark set out, Moses said, “Rise up, O LORD! May your enemies be scattered; may your foes flee before you.” Psalm 68 begins with the affirmation that this is exactly what will happen. The occasion of this Psalm is traditionally accepted as the time the Ark was returned to Jerusalem after being held captive by the enemy. David sings, “ God shall arise, his enemies shall be scattered; and those who hate him shall flee before him!” But there is even a stronger illusion to the Ark. The presence of God was smoke and fire. Smoke in the day time and fire at night. The second verse says, “As smoke is driven away, so you shall drive them away; as wax melts before fire, so the wicked shall perish before God!”

The Bible uses the image of “melting” a lot. God sends his word and melts the ice (Ps. 147:18); Filthiness is melted from within (Ezek 24:11), Mountains melt before the Lord (Ps 97:5), The hills melt (Nahum 1:5), The Lord touches the land and it melts (Amos 9:5), The earth melts at Gods’ voice, (Ps 46:6), Gold and Silver will melt in God’s furnace (Ezek 22).

All of us face mountains of problems, hills of difficulties, hard sinful hearts, and what is often a very unforgiving world. FDR (Franklin Delano Roosevelt) once said, “ I doubt if there is a problem—political or economic—that will not melt before the fire of a spiritual awakening.” When God takes His rightful place in our lives, as He did in Jerusalem, all His enemies will flee from our lives!

“Rise Up, Oh, Lord!”

The godly will rejoice in the Lord and find shelter in him. And those who do what is right will praise him. (Psalm 64:10)