March 8th Blog (Joshua Chapters 1-12)
OBSERVE: In chapter 2, two spies had made their way across the Jordan River and into Jericho to scout out the enemy territory. There, to avoid any kind of suspicion, they spent the night in the house of a prostitute name Rahab. Rahab had heard about the Israelites and their journey. But more significantly, we read that Rahab had heard about the God of the Israelites.
“I know the Lord has given you this land,” she told them. “We are all afraid of you. Everyone in the land is living in terror. For we have heard how the Lord made a dry path for you through the Red Sea when you left Egypt. And we know what you did to Sihon and Og, the two Amorite kings east of the Jordan River, whose people you completely destroyed. No wonder our hearts have melted in fear! No one has the courage to fight after hearing such things. For the Lord you God is the supreme God of the heavens above and the earth below. Now swear to me by the Lord that you will be kind to me and my family since I have helped you.” (Joshua 2: 9-12)
INTERPRET: The spies agree, telling Rahab to leave a scarlet rope hanging form her window so that she and her family would be spared when the Israelites overtook Jericho. In the New Testament, the writer to the Hebrews revealed that though Rahab was a notorious sinner, her grabbing hold of the promises of God revealed that she was a woman of great faith. She believed in the power of God and was willing to risk everything to become a part of the people of God (Hebrews 11:31). Rahab was delivered from the judgment that fell upon Jericho because she knew that Yahweh was the true and living God, and she believed he would succeed in leading his people into the land as he had promised.
APPLICATION: Not only did Rahab desire to be saved from the judgement of God about to fall on Jericho, she wanted to get in on the promises of God that belong to those who live by faith. Because Rahab was justified through faith and her sins were forgiven, she lived the rest of her life as a citizen among God’s people. Not only that, she married among these people and is included in the family line of Jesus Christ (Matthew 1:5), the One whom all of the promises of God are ultimately fulfilled. For all who have faith in Jesus Christ, God has promised safety from judgement and to be a member of God’s family forever.
QUESTION/REFELCTION: God promises that all who live by faith in Jesus Christ will have more abundant life now and eternal life with God. Have you grabbed hold of these promises?
PRAYER: Holy God, in your sight I stand in the Rahab’s place. I deserve your judgement. But because I believe you will fulfill your promises, you have given me a scarlet rope and grafted me into the people of God. AMEN.
SONG: Jericho (Andrew Ripp)
In 2023, each week's blog is a follow-up reflection written by the preceding Sunday’s preacher to dig deeper into the sermon topic and explore engaging discussion questions.