Meanwhile, Jarāsandha again attacked Mathurā, this time with bigger divisions of soldiers, numbering twenty-three akṣauhiṇīs.
Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa wanted to save Mathurā from the eighteenth attack of the great military divisions of King Jarāsandha. To prevent further killing of soldiers and to attend to other important business, Lord Kṛṣṇa left the battlefield without fighting. Actually He was not at all afraid, but He pretended to be an ordinary human being frightened by the immense quantity of soldiers and resources of Jarāsandha. Without any weapons Kṛṣṇa left the battlefield. Although His lotus feet were as soft as the petals of a lotus flower, He proceeded for a very long distance on foot.
This time, Jarāsandha thought that Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma were very much afraid of his military strength and were fleeing the battlefield. He followed Them with all his chariots, horses and infantry. He thought Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma to be ordinary human beings, and he was trying to measure the activities of the Lord. Due to this pastime Kṛṣṇa is known as Raṇacora, which means “one who has left the battlefield.” In India, especially in Gujarat, there are many temples of Kṛṣṇa known as temples of Raṇacorajī. Ordinarily, if a king leaves the battlefield without fighting he is called a coward, but when Kṛṣṇa enacts this pastime, leaving the battlefield without fighting, He is worshiped by the devotees. A demon always tries to measure the opulence of Kṛṣṇa, whereas a devotee never tries to measure His strength and opulence but always surrenders unto Him and worships Him. By following in the footsteps of pure devotees, we can know that Kṛṣṇa, the Raṇacoraji, left the battlefield not because He was afraid but because He had some other purpose. The purpose, as it will be revealed, was to attend to a confidential letter sent by Rukmiṇī, His future first wife. Kṛṣṇa’s leaving the battlefield is a display of one of His six opulences. Kṛṣṇa is the supreme powerful, the supreme wealthy, the supreme famous, the supreme wise and the supreme beautiful; similarly, He is the supreme renouncer. Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam clearly states that He left the battlefield in spite of having ample military strength. Even without His militia, He alone would have been sufficient to defeat the army of Jarāsandha, as He had done seventeen times before. Therefore, His leaving the battlefield is an example of His supermost opulence, renunciation.
After traversing a very long distance, the brothers pretended to become tired. To mitigate Their weariness, They climbed up a mountain many miles above sea level. This mountain was called Pravarṣaṇa due to constant rain, for the peak was always covered with clouds sent by Indra. Jarāsandha took it for granted that the two brothers were afraid of his military power and had hidden Themselves at the top of the mountain. First he tried to find Them, searching for a long time, but when he failed he decided to trap and kill Them by setting fires around the peak. He therefore surrounded the peak with firewood and set it ablaze. As the fire spread more and more, Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma jumped from the top of the mountain down to the ground—a distance of eighty-eight miles. Thus, while the peak was burning up, Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma escaped, unseen by Jarāsandha or his men. Jarāsandha concluded that the two brothers had burned to ashes and that there was no need of further fighting. Thinking himself successful in his efforts, he left the city of Mathurā and returned to his home in the kingdom of Magadha. Gradually Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma reached the city of Dvārakā, which was surrounded by the sea.
Following this, Śrī Balarāma married Revatī, daughter of King Raivata, ruler of Ānarta Province. This is explained in the Ninth Canto of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. After the marriage of Baladeva, Kṛṣṇa married Rukmiṇī. Rukmiṇī was the daughter of King Bhīṣmaka, ruler of the province known as Vidarbha. Just as Kṛṣṇa is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vāsudeva, Rukmiṇī is the supreme goddess of fortune, Mahā-Lakṣmī. According to the authority of the Caitanya-caritāmṛta, the expansion of Kṛṣṇa and that of Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī are simultaneous: Kṛṣṇa expands Himself into various viṣṇu-tattva forms, and Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī expands Herself into various śakti-tattva forms, by Her internal potency, as multiforms of the goddess of fortune.