Even the best soldiers and most courageous avoid death. The best armies in the world would do anything possible to minimise death of their officers. Even Jesus avoided death. How comes Jesus avoided death yet He had come to die for us?
After this, Jesus went around in Galilee. He did not want to go about in Judea because the Jewish leaders there were looking for a way to kill him.
Jesus is one hundred percent God and one hundred percent human, John 1:14. Jesus did not have to fear death for He has power over death, John 11:25-26 and Revelation 1:18. Therefore if Jesus was avoiding death it was not for fear of dying but for purposes of setting an example for us who must face death. The life of Jesus set an example for us on how to live, 1 Peter 2:21. The life of Jesus was our example of how to live. The death of Jesus was our substitute so that we do not die. Therefore from the example Jesus set, there are times we are supposed to avoid death. Jesus avoided death!
Jesus came purposely to die for us. Death was to be the climax of His earthly ministry, yet He avoided death until then. Jesus encourages us to be faithful even if it means dying because of our faithfulness, Revelation 2:10. Death will come but we shouldn’t seek it. Death will come but we shouldn’t invite it. Death will come but we should not go looking for it. As much as possible we should stay clear of risks to death unless it puts our faith in jeopardy. Jesus who came to die avoided death until the right time. Jesus who set an example for how we should live lived a life of avoiding death. Jesus avoided death!
It was time for the feast of Tabernacles. People were congregating in Judea and Jerusalem where the temple was. Jesus was expected to be there since His disciples were there. The enemies of Jesus were determined to kill Him this time. Jesus heard about it and He changed His plans. Jesus did not go to Judea in order to avoid death. Jesus stayed at home in Galilee in order to avoid death. Jesus avoided death!
Suicide is killing yourself. Suicide is going for death. When you go where you are most likely to be killed you are suicidal. You are exposing yourself so that you are killed. It is as good as killing yourself. If Jesus avoided death, it means Jesus wasn’t suicidal. We must pray against the spirit of suicide and thoughts of suicide. If you harbor such thoughts, talk to someone today in confidence. Such thoughts are contrary to the example Jesus set. Jesus avoided death!
We too should avoid death. Careless driving of motorbikes and any vehicle that puts us at risk of dying is contrary to the way of life of Jesus who avoided death. The use of narcotics, drug abuse, alcohol, and tobacco are things that put our lives at risk. Jesus wouldn’t risk His life, he didn’t go to Judea He stayed in Galilee to avoid death. Why are you risking? Jesus avoided death!
We shouldn’t risk with trial and error medication touted to heal, yet we have more reliable medications in the hospitals. Whichever way we shall still die, therefore do not put yourself at risk as if you are looking for the herb that grants eternal life. Whatever choices you make, do not put your life at risk. Jesus avoided death!
If you are challenged by weapons wielding criminals and you are unable to resist the attack, do not put your life at risk by attempting to fight back. During demonstrations and riots, do not challenge the police and threaten them yet they are carrying weapons. Do not provoke the police to shoot. Jesus avoided death!
If there is a pandemic around the world you should keep yourself safe. Avoid exposure which subsequently leads to death. There is an HIV/AIDS pandemic still killing more people. We now have Covid-19 which is airborne. In the spirit of Jesus, we should avoid death. We should wear masks, sanitize and keep a social distance. We should avoid death. Jesus avoided death!
If staying in Galilee meant avoiding death, Jesus avoided death and stayed in Galilee yet He had wanted to go to Judea and join His friends and disciples. Jesus would therefore take a vaccine and avoid death than listen to fables that are informally shared on social media. Jesus wasn’t gullible. Jesus avoided death!
Staying in a violent relationship that puts your life at risk is not faithfulness to anything or anyone. You are neither faithful to the marriage which needs you alive nor to Jesus who commands us by His example to avoid death. Provoking fights or staying around an angry person is suicidal. Walking away, running away, and keeping off is avoiding death. Jesus avoided death!
Provoking people by a poor choice of words while preaching is not martyrdom it is idiocy. Abusing other religious organizations will not win people to your faith. The Bible teaches that while preaching we should do it lovingly even while condemning sin, Ephesians 4:15. If you have an arrangement at work with colleagues that help you avoid working on the sabbath, use it, rather than writing letters and challenging your bosses that you can’t work on the sabbath. It is not fear, it is strategy. Jesus sent us to preach but warned us to be strategic in avoiding death and winning people, Matthew 10:16. My father would tell us, do not trouble trouble before trouble troubles you. Jesus avoided death!
If death comes our way, we must fearlessly face it and it may pass or we may die in a manner that brings glory to God. Until death itself comes our way, we shouldn’t cause it to come our way by foolish courage or careless conduct. We must be on our guard. The fear of death can cripple us from doing anything. Believers are fearless, we are not cowards, Revelation 21:8, but strategic in avoiding death while achieving our goals. Jesus avoided death!
The feast of Tabernacles was a religious event, yet Jesus avoided it to avoid death. Jesus told His brothers that He would not go for this festival, John 7:8. If worshipping from another place would help you to avoid death, so be it. God is omnipresent. God can be worshipped anywhere if fellowship for some reason is not possible. If congregating in a religious feast would put His life at risk, Jesus stayed at home. What about us in times when Covid-19 is spreading? Are we like Jesus or trying to act smarter than Him? Smarter than God? Jesus avoided death!
May God grant us wisdom to know when to confront death and death threats, and when to avoid them, in Jesus name, Amen!
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