A Very Shady Lady
Praise God that he doesn’t use perfect people, but weak people like us to fulfill his gracious plans.
Read Joshua 2:1-16
 Then Joshua son of Nun secretly sent two spies from Shittim. “Go, look over the land,” he said, “especially Jericho.” So they went and entered the house of a prostitute named Rahab and stayed there.  The king of Jericho was told, “Look, some of the Israelites have come here tonight to spy out the land.”  So the king of Jericho sent this message to Rahab: “Bring out the men who came to you and entered your house, because they have come to spy out the whole land.”  But the woman had taken the two men and hidden them. She said, “Yes, the men came to me, but I did not know where they had come from.  At dusk, when it was time to close the city gate, they left. I don’t know which way they went. Go after them quickly. You may catch up with them.”  (But she had taken them up to the roof and hidden them under the stalks of flax she had laid out on the roof.)  So the men set out in pursuit of the spies on the road that leads to the fords of the Jordan, and as soon as the pursuers had gone out, the gate was shut.  Before the spies lay down for the night, she went up on the roof  and said to them, “I know that the LORD has given you this land and that a great fear of you has fallen on us, so that all who live in this country are melting in fear because of you.  We have heard how the LORD dried up the water of the Red Sea for you when you came out of Egypt, and what you did to Sihon and Og, the two kings of the Amorites east of the Jordan, whom you completely destroyed.  When we heard of it, our hearts melted in fear and everyone’s courage failed because of you, for the LORD your God is God in heaven above and on the earth below.  “Now then, please swear to me by the LORD that you will show kindness to my family, because I have shown kindness to you. Give me a sure sign  that you will spare the lives of my father and mother, my brothers and sisters, and all who belong to them-and that you will save us from death.”  “Our lives for your lives!” the men assured her. “If you don’t tell what we are doing, we will treat you kindly and faithfully when the LORD gives us the land.”  So she let them down by a rope through the window, for the house she lived in was part of the city wall.  She said to them, “Go to the hills so the pursuers will not find you. Hide yourselves there three days until they return, and then go on your way.” Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
ReflectWhat caused Rahab to cooperate with the spies?
Rahab is hardly a role model for us. The book of Joshua doesn’t beat about the bush: the spies take refuge in a brothel; Rahab is a prostitute; she’s also a liar. When the king’s men come to her house to arrest the spies she tells a bare-faced lie to get rid of them. So she violates at least two of the commandments God gave to Moses. But what marks her out from the rest of the people in Jericho is her sense that the God of Israel is at work in a powerful way (see vs. 9-11): while the rest of the city shares her fear, she knows “that the Lord has given [you] this land” and that he “rules heaven and earth.” It’s that spiritual insight, rather than her behavior, which marks her out from the crowd. Rahab gives us ample evidence that our God really can use anyone, and that he shows neither partiality nor favoritism (Acts 10:34). There really is no one who cannot find themselves within the scope of his grace and plan.
Pray for the most unlikely person you know to make the same acknowledgement as Rahab (11).
Lord God, I know that You alone are God and Lord of all, and I’m thankful that You’ll use me in Your great plans.
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