Scripture: Joshua 2:1-21
Joshua 2:11-13 “…and as soon as we heard it, our hearts melted, and there was no courage left in any man, because of you; for the Lord your God is he who is God in heaven above and on earth beneath. 12 Now then, swear to me by the Lord that I have dealt kindly with you, you also will deal kindly with my fathers house, and give me a sure sign, 13 and save alive my father and my mother, my brothers and sisters, and all who belong to them, and deliver our lives from death.”
Rehab, a single female, a foreigner living in Jericho, and a harlot spoke these words. She really could not have a lower status in the community, yet she was very independent and reported to no man. Why do you think she is worth mentioning in the Old Testament and then again in the New Testament, Hebrews 11:31? Why did God choose her to help Joshua’s spies stay safe and evade capture by the king and allow the Israelites to take over?
We should not be surprised that God would choose the least likely woman to preserve Joshua’s line and assist in the take over of Jericho. Was the Messiah really all that different - Son of a carpenter who was never respected for who he was by His people until after he was crucified? She lived on the edge, literally her house was on the wall of the city and Jesus was born in a barn surrounded by animals.
Marginalized by society with no social standing, Rahab used her intelligence and courage to conceive a plan to save her family and herself in the inevitable battle. Her belief in the power of the Lord was so strong that she bravely negotiated this agreement. Women of her time did not broker deals. She risked her own life to shelter Joshua’s spies in order to save her family and generations to come.
In Hebrews 11:31, Rahab is mentioned again: “By faith Rahab…did not perish with those who were disobedient, because she had given friendly welcome to the spies.”
As we enter into the season of Advent help us to recognize the strength and humanity of our friends, family and those who may be marginalized in our community. Help us to open our eyes to recognize how God would have us see and act with the bravery and belief of Rahab. Free us of stereotype judgments and blindness and through our faith give us strength to see Christ in the people we encounter everyday. Prepare our hearts and minds to do the work, which you would have us, do to welcome our Messiah into our daily lives.
About the Contributor:
Muffet Chapman serves on the Session as a liaison with Faith Initiative to End Child Poverty, on the Local Missions Committee and with EPIC food delivery assisting families of children living in homelessness in school District 7. She has been married for 30 years to Norman, a life long member of the church, and they have two fantastic daughters who are both Clemson graduates.