“The same day there came certain of the Pharisees, saying unto him, Get thee out, and depart hence: for Herod will kill thee.”
Satan could not defeat the Saviour. He tried to tempt Him in the wilderness only to fail. His next attempt to defeat the Saviour was by using the ruling religious class of Jesus’ day to try and get Jesus to flee in fear. The Pharisees told Jesus that He needed to get out of the city because Herod was going to kill Him. These Pharisees did not care about the life of Christ, and Jesus knew it. The only thing the Pharisees wanted was to validate their accusations that Jesus was a fake, and the only way they could validate this was to get Him to flee in fear.
This reminds me of another incident in the Scriptures. Nehemiah was building the wall around Jerusalem, and the enemies of the Jews wanted nothing to do with this wall. These enemies tried everything in their power to stop Nehemiah, but he would not surrender to their attacks and ridicule. One thing these enemies had not tried was to get Nehemiah to fear for his life. They sent him a letter that said that they would tell the king that he was going to rebel. The enemies’ solution was to hide in the temple “for they will come to slay thee; yea, in the night will they come to slay thee.” Nehemiah realizing this was a battle of faith responded to them by saying, “Should such a man as I flee? and who is there, that, being as I am, would go into the temple to save his life? I will not go in.” (Nehemiah 6:11)
There is one time a man of God fled in fear, and that man was Elijah. He fled because a contract had been put on his life. Certainly, fleeing seemed to be justifiable, but God didn’t justify it because it was an act of fear and not a response of faith.
My friend, fear will always give you a reason to hide or flee. What fear tells you may sound real, but what you fear is not fact. Fear distorts the facts and magnifies the lies that it creates to get you to leave the life of faith to run in fear. Just because fear’s message sounds real doesn’t mean it is true. Even if what fear says is true, you have still been commanded by the Scriptures to live by faith. Certainly, living by faith will put you in the minority with man, but you will please God.
Moreover, responding to the message of fear validates to the enemy that your faith is false. You can preach a message of faith, but faith’s message is tested when the megaphone of fear seems more real than the message of faith. People are watching you when fear is being publicized to see if what you have said about faith throughout the years is real. If you run and hide when fear has the bully pulpit, you are telling your enemy that the object of fear is bigger than God.
My friend, the time to stand the strongest is when faith is attacked by fear. I know that it can get lonely when you stand with faith, but you are standing where the saints of old have stood when they are threatened with the message of fear. When you realize that Hell is real, you will find a reason to stand when the object of fear seems real. When you realize that the work you are doing is great and essential, you will have no choice but to stand by faith when the object of fear demands that you isolate yourself. The work of God must always go on in spite of what the object of fear tells you to do. It is not a matter as to whether the object of fear is right; it is a matter that Hell never stops taking people when you hide in fear.