Today we are going to talk about Rahab, but before we get to her I want to tell you some fascinating things about her hometown, Jericho. Jericho is likely the oldest city in the world and is thought to be the oldest to have a protective wall around it. It has been rebuilt three times and to this day is inhabited by about 18,000 people. It sits 800 feet below sea level, which causes the climate to be more temperate and it has been used as a holiday destination in the winter for those looking to escape the cold of the Judean countryside. One of the times that it was rebuilt was naturally after the incident that we read about this week in the book of Joshua.
After the Israelites defeated the people of Jericho, Joshua said this; “Cursed be the man before the Lord who rises up and builds this city Jericho; he shall lay its foundation with his firstborn, and with his youngest he shall set up its gates (Joshua 6:26).”
We have to go all the way to 1 Kings 16:34, many, many, many years later, to find out the rest of the story. About the time of Elijah, someone decided to finally test that curse and rebuild. “In his days Hiel of Bethel built Jericho. He laid its foundation with Abiram his firstborn, and with his youngest son Segub he set up its gates, according to the word of the Lord, which He had spoken through Joshua the son of Nun.” Isn’t that amazing? God always keeps His Word.
The interesting thing about Rahab is that she was living in this beautiful, protected city but when the Israelite spies sought shelter with her, she risked her own life to save theirs. It doesn’t make a bit of sense unless you carefully read her reason. “I know that the Lord has given you the land, that the terror of you has fallen on us, and that all the inhabitants of the land are fainthearted because of you. For we have heard how the Lord dried up the water of the Red Sea for you when you came out of Egypt (ch. 2, v 9-10a).”
She had “heard” about the parting of the Red Sea? Rahab probably wasn’t even born when it happened- it had been 40 years! After that, from an outsider’s perspective, the people had been meandering through the desert eating manna while the men dropped like flies. That shows the power of our story. All of these years later, the story of what God had done for His people was enough to strike terror into the entire population of a city.
Revelation 12:11 says that Satan will lose because of the blood of the Lamb and the word of our testimony. Our testimony is the story that we have to tell about the great things that God has done in our lives. They are meant to be told and they are powerful! They are so powerful that they can change a harlot into a heroin and bring salvation not only to her, but to her entire household.
If you have a story of God’s grace to you (and you do!), tell it over and over again. Tell it so many times that your teenager starts rolling her eyes as soon as you start. Let your story give God glory.
(For those who have missed any of the previous lessons, you can go to https://comethirstyministry.com/blog/ and view all previous postings.)
Day 1: Joshua 2:1-24 (Rahab)
Day 2: Joshua 3:1-17 (Hebrew Women)
Day 3: Joshua 4:1-24 (Hebrew Women)
Day 4: Joshua 6:1-27 (Rahab)
Day 5: Judges 4:1-24 (Deborah and Jael)