For ye shall not go out with haste, nor go by flight: for the Lord will go before you; and the God of Israel will be your rereward. (Isaiah 52:12)
Jesus died in order to deliver us from this present evil world according to the will of God (Gal 1:4). Peter told his listeners, “Save yourselves from this untoward [crooked and perverse] generation” (Acts 2:40). And “true and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father is this: to visit the fatherless and widows in their afflictions and to keep himself unspotted from the world” (Jas 1:27).
The posture of the people of God will always be in a stance of fighting, defending, warring, escaping and looking for deliverance. This posture, however, is not done after the flesh and it is not one of defeat. In other words, Christians are not to be known for quitting, running and hiding and neither are they to be known for seeking confrontation or picking fights with those who contradict. Instead the “will of God” for them is “that with well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men” (1 Pet 2:15).
Their is one account when, after preaching the truth, Jesus was pressed to the edge of a cliff that His oppressors would throw Him headlong to His death, “but He passing through the midst of them, went His way” (Lk 4:30). God had provided a way of escape and His enemies had no power over Him except that which was given from heaven – which at that time was none. Jesus didn’t have to fight, nor did He have to take flight. He simply went His way. This is the manner of His kingdom and a demonstration of His reign.
On the contrary, when Israel came out of Egypt they were to eat in haste and with their loins girded. They left Egypt in haste and in flight and the Lord Himself, as it were, taking them by the hand to pull them out. But this is not the way of things now. When the disciples of Christ find themselves in a place of persecution or in a tempest of temptation or in an arena of opposition – they do not need to flee in haste. They can trust in the Lord to accomplish all His will and for the king of glory to have His way. They can walk through the midst of the enemies as the Lord Himself goes before them and as their God is their rereward.
This is not to say that their won’t be times when the Christians are killed or imprisoned for the gospel’s sake – as many souls under the altar can testify – but it is to say that they do not need to fear and quake at the threats and hands of men. They can go their way boldly and with confidence that the Lord is before them and behind them, whether that place be their death or their deliverance – the Lord is there.
So, fear not, child of God. When it is time to “go out from among them” and “be separate” you can go out boldly and without fear – for the Lord is with you. When you “take flight” or “make haste” it will be to flee TO Jesus not from men and make haste to obtain salvation not to escape the wiles of men. Christ Jesus has been given the kingdom and He is ruling over it well.
Therefore thus saith the Lord God,
“Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste.” (Isaiah 28:16)