It is now a common experience in many parts of Nigeria for bandits to storm the roads,stop vehicles at random,hijack and kidnap travellers and hold them hostage and release them in exchange for ransom.
This has made traveling a fearsome experience for many road users.
It is instructive to note that although banditary and kidnappings are common place in Nigeria,they are however not new.
ln Bible days,there were occasion some people were waylaid on their ways,whilst traveling, were attacked with their valuables taken from them.
Proverbs 1:10-15 speaks of activities of bandits and kidnappers this way:
(10)"My son,if sinners entice thee,consent thou not.
(11)lf they say, Come with us,let us lay wait for blood,let us lurk privily for the innocent without cause:
(12)Let us swallow them up alive as the grave; and whole,as those that go down into the pit:
(13)We shall find all precious substance,we shall fill our houses with spoil:
(14) Cast in thy lot among us;let us all have one purse
(15)My son,walk not thou in the way with them; refrain thy foot from their path"
In the Bible days,some people fell victims of the activities of bandits,robbers and kidnappers.Some however escaped.
If we must escape the activities of bandits, robbers and kidnappers, we must examine the steps such people of old took and follow suit.
A ready example we can use as case study is the step that Ezra took when he needed to take a large number of the Jews from Babylon to go and rebuild the house of God in Jerusalem,on the orders of Cyrus, the king of Persia.
There was also concerns in the heart of Ezra and other lsraelites how he and his contigents were going to make it through their rout to Jerusalem to build God's house because of fear of bandits, robbers and kidnappers whose activities was a threat to travelling in those days.
Before Ezra embarked on that journey,he gathered the people together:
(1)They set aside a day to fast;
(2)They prayed that the Lord will grant them safe passage as they embarked on their trip;
(3)God granted their request and they made it safely to Jerusalem.
Ezra 8:21-22,31 say thus:
(21)"Then l proclaimed a fast there,at the river of Ahava, that we might afflict ourselves before God,to seek of him a right way for us, and for our little ones, and for all our substance"
(22)"For l was ashamed to require of the King a band of soldiers and horsemen to help us against the enemy in the way: because we had spoken unto the king, saying,The hand of our God is upon all them for good that seek him;but his power and his wrath is against all them that forsake him"
(23)" So we fasted and besought our God for this: and he was entreated of us."
(31)"Then we departed from the river of Ahava on the twelfth day of the first month,to go unto Jerusalem: and the hand of our God was upon us, and he delivered us from the hand of the enemy, and of such as lay in wait by the way".
If we want to embark on a safe journey and escape bandits,robbers and hijackers and kidnappers on the road,we should always seek God's help in fasting and prayers to grant us help and deliverance as Ezra and lsraelites did in their days.
Thanks for reading this piece.
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