Grace For Your Day March 27

In his radio program entitled “The Bible Study Hour,” the Presbyterian Pastor James Montgomery Boice once said:

When you begin to think of Rahab, you realize that not only was her salvation miraculous but it was also courageous because it was exercised at great danger to herself. Just think what she did. First of all, she put her life on the line because Jericho wasn’t a nice city. This wasn’t a pleasant suburb somewhere; it was a military outpost. And in a military outpost, especially in war time, you do not take the existence of traitors lightly. If the messengers of the king had not believed her answer that the spies had left the city before the gates were closed, when they had searched her house and found the spies, imagine what would have happened to Rabab. She and probably her family would have been arrested on the spot, taken before the king, undoubtedly tortured, and killed perhaps in the cruelest way possible. Yet still she put her life on the line. Rahab risked it all in order to identify with what she perceived by the work of God in her heart to be the truth concerning the Jewish God.
Secondly, Rahab turned her back on her own people. Now, this was war time; the Israelites were set against the inhabitants of Jericho. And this was a war to the death. The inhabitants of Jericho knew that if the Jews succeeded in overrunning the city, they would kill everybody. And by contrast, if the citizens of Jericho had won, they would have killed all the Jews. And yet, here was Rahab the Amorite, the citizen of Jericho, who nevertheless was willing to turn her back on her entire past and upon her people because of her conviction of who God really was and what God required of her. 

The third thing Rahab did was to identify with the Jewish people. She well could have said, as Ruth said to her mother-in-law, Naomi, “Your people shall be my people and your God my God.” Now think about that because when God took Rahab into Israel, God did not bring her in as a second-class citizen. Hers was not a second-class salvation. Apparently, Rahab was received from the beginning with full standing in the Jewish camp. And, moreover, she also married into it, and by the grace of God, through that marriage, she actually became an ancestor of our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.

There was a prince in Judah among the Jews whose name was Salmon. Salmon married Rahab, and the son born to them was Boaz. And Boaz was the one who married Ruth. Then from them came Obed, who begot Jesse, who was the father of King David. And we know that eventually from King David came the Lord Jesus Christ. Isn’t it marvelous that God took this woman—a Gentile, even an Amorite prostitute—and saved her simply through hearing about the Jewish God?  From there, He took her out of her environment and incorporated her among the company of His people so that she actually married into a line that produced the Lord Jesus Christ.

James Montgomery Boice is right because Rahab had a truly remarkable faith. She stands out in the Bible as someone who trusted in God in spite of overwhelming odds. If you think about it, she had the wrong race, the wrong religion, and the wrong occupation when the people of Israel met her. She possessed the wrong skin color, the wrong country, and the wrong background and yet they welcomed her in because she believed. She put her faith in Yahweh and became a child of God in order to demonstrate that there is hope for anyone today who wants to do the same, which is what we are going to talk about this week in the Book of Hebrews.

This Sunday, we are continuing our study of the Hall of Faith by looking at the tenth person in the list and that is Rahab, the harlot of Jericho. She is a good reminder that no one is too lost for God to reach. No matter what you have done, the Lord can still save you if you call out on His name even if you come from a place like Jericho.

Rahab is also a wonderful encouragement for us because she is the second woman listed in this chapter behind Sarah and the two of them could not be any more different. Sarah was a housewife while Rahab was a prostitute. Sarah was a Jew (or she was the "mother of the Jews") while Rahab was a Gentile. Sarah was married to Abraham while Rahab’s husband is not mentioned when we first meet her in the Bible. However, both of them are mentioned in

 the Hall of Faith in order to remind us that the Lord redeems people from every walk of life.
I look forward to studying that with you in detail this weekend. Our service begins on Sunday morning at 9:30. See you then!

- Jeremy Cagle