“If I Perish, I Perish”
There are times when God’s people must take a stand for God. There are even some times when this means being willing to give up one’s own life for God. Let’s look at some of the many examples of this in his word:
Willingness to die so that others might live
(Esther was willing to risk her life in order to save the lives of all of the Jews)
Go, gather together all the Jews that are present in Shushan, and fast ye for me, and neither eat nor drink three days, night or day: I also and my maidens will fast likewise; and so will I go in unto the king, which is not according to the law: and if I perish, I perish.
Willingness to die rather than to disobey God
(Three men were willing to die rather than worship an idol)
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, answered and said to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer thee in this matter. If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.
Willingness to die rather than to stop serving God
(The Apostle Paul was willing to die serving God)
Then Paul answered, What mean ye to weep and to break mine heart? for I am ready not to be bound only, but also to die at Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus.
Willingness to die because death will come anyway.
(Four lepers were willing to risk their lives because they would die anyway)
And there were four leprous men at the entering in of the gate: and they said one to another, Why sit we here until we die? If we say, We will enter into the city, then the famine is in the city, and we shall die there: and if we sit still here, we die also. Now therefore come, and let us fall unto the host of the Syrians: if they save us alive, we shall live; and if they kill us, we shall but die.
II Kings 7:3-4
Although these four lepers may not have been motivated to take action out of a desire to serve God, there is a valuable principle that we can learn from their example. This life is short. Why sit we here until we die? God has a purpose for everyone. His primary purpose is for all to be saved from their sin by being born again. For those who are saved, his purpose is to obey and glorify him, and to love others.
Jesus was different.
He was not a man willing to risk his life,
He was God who came to earth for the express purpose
of giving up his life so that you and I might live.
Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again. No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father.
My Saviour gave up his life for me. I may never be called upon to die physically in order to honor my Saviour (but given the current trends in our society, that time may very well come in the not-too-distant future). The Apostle Paul said, "I die daily". This is a daily submission to God's will instead of ours. This is something that all Christians are called upon to do and it is only our reasonable service. It is an honor to do so, and....
lf I perish, I perish.