No risks in Judea

So, when he heard that Lazarus was ill, he stayed two days longer in the place where he was. Then after this he said to the disciples, “Let us go to Judea again.” The disciples said to him, “Rabbi, the Jews were just now seeking to stone you, and are you going there again?” Jesus answered, “Are there not twelve hours in the day? If anyone walks in the day, he does not stumble, because he sees the light of this world. But if anyone walks in the night, he stumbles, because the light is not in him.” John 11:6-10
Jesus doesn’t take the path of least resistance. He doesn’t hide from dangerous situations. He had come under threat in Judea with people looking to stone Him. And now He takes what appears to be a massive risk, going back to an area where people were out to kill him. But with Jesus there are no risks. He is omniscient – he knew how things would play out. And for us there are no risks when we follow Christ for we know to live is Christ and to die is gain. They can take our body but they cannot take our soul. We need to follow the example of Jesus and go into the dangerous situations, the places where people are seeking to stone us. That might not be literal. But it could be. There are many places in the world where Christians routinely come under attack. Are we bold enough to go there? Will we go where there is need rather than where there is comfort? It is relatively easy to go to church on a Sunday. There is no major cost for us. Around the world our Christian brothers and sisters face severe hardships and even death. As Christians in the UK/USA we won’t face any major persecution for going to church. We are safe there, just as ships in a harbour are safe. But ships aren’t made to stay in the harbour. They are made to cross oceans. What will really change the world is not what we do on a Sunday but what we do the rest of the week. What will really change the world is how we follow Jesus when it isn’t easy. What will really change the world is us witnessing to people who don’t want to hear what we have to share. What will change the world is when we go to our own personal Judeas, walking out in the faith that to live is Christ and to die is gain. When we have that mentality that our comfort is less important than the advance of the Gospel and our lives on earth are temporary and death just means being united with Jesus in Heaven we will be prepared to take what seems like massive risks in the world’s view, knowing that with God it is no risk but rather a win-win situation.

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