Notice, the message for them to flee came from God! Does God expect us to flee, or does He expect us to stay put and let Him put an invisible shield around us so that we are impervious to what is happening around us? No, God Himself sent a message by an angel to Joseph, and he fled immediately by night.The implication of those two scriptures is that he hopped up out of bed, gathered Mary, Jesus, and their things, and took off for Egypt while it was yet dark. Apparently, he did not even wait until morning to leave. Joseph, hand-picked by God to be the surrogate father (or stepfather) to His own Son, had enough spiritual know-now to flee. There is nothing cowardly about fleeing.
Why would God want us to flee? Obviously, there are things to be learned from fleeing that cannot be learned if God is always protecting us from the damage that we may sometimes bring on ourselves.
John W. Ritenbaugh
A Place of Safety? (Part 2)
Other Forerunner Commentary entries containing Matthew 2:13: