As I was reading through the beginning of Joshua something stuck out at me. Joshua 1:21 “I accept your terms,” she (Rahab) replied. And she left the scarlet rope hanging from her window. Notice that she did not wrap the rope back up to then let down in three days when the Israelis attack was imminent on her homeland. She “left” it there.
WOW. She was not ashamed, frightened, deterred or otherwise led to do anything less than wholeheartedly obey the command given by the spies of their Hebrew God. She had heard of the marvelous things their God had done, as word had traveled all through her land, and everyone inside of Jericho was scared stiff.
She must have had a glimpse of something even the majority of the Israelites, despite their forty year, day to night leadings by God, ever truly realized. Merely “hearing” the word of what Jehovah had done for them was enough for her to believe. She had never personally witnessed the Red Sea parted, or the two Amorite kings slaughtered, yet she knew it must be true. She honored God by taking him at his word and believing that he was indeed who he said he was. She’d even risk her old, defiled life at a chance to live a new life, to become a new creation, living more intimately and becoming more closely acquainted with the Israelis God. Simply, she wanted him to be her God too!
What faith it must’ve taken to believe the spies and leave her scarlet rope alone! I wonder how many times she paced back and forth in her inn, while her family cried out in despair, reassuring each everything would indeed work out. How many times did she rehearse her sins before this God she was so anxious and happy to meet face to face? I don’t know, but I find her faith so inspiring. At any time a native could have reported her to the authorities. She and her entire family could have seen a treacherous act unfold against them for the help she provided, but somehow, someway God ensured that no other mention of that cord came up, except as a tribute to him. It became a holy marking unto the Lord to permit destruction to pass, much like the blood on the door posts found in Egypt the night of the Lord’s great slaughter.
I find it equally interesting that she is mentioned in Jesus’s lineage in Matthew. That a foreign prostitute was grafted into the holy Judean branch, married to Salmon, no not the fish ;) and forever mentioned with the highest honor and respect. Who knows maybe Salmon was one of those spies she spared?! We never know who we may be entertaining in life; perhaps even your future husband, ladies! I love how God uses ordinary, foolish no-bodies to confound the wise. That all along God sees the extraordinary value and purpose he has laid in each, and how he tenderly watches his plans to use each mightily unfold.
Yes, that is the God I serve, one full of wonder and hope, awe and inspiration. He never wastes a drop of anything, and for that dear woman to leave her cord hanging out of that window “publically proclaiming” her allegiance to a God she had previously only heard stories of, well, that my friends to me, is the epitome of the power of the Gospel we all so dearly treasure and preserve. I am spending my morning admiring the miracle God gave Rahab. What a living testament of fortitude, grace and faith! May your day be filled with peace, joy and love to overflow in this man God we love so, Jesus Christ. So be it.