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Saturday, April 30, 2016

Sunday Snippets: Rahab, Woman of Faith


Hebrews 11:31 "By faith the harlot Rahab perished not with them that believed not, when she had received the spies with peace."

I hesitate to start writing about Rahab, because her story is honestly almost my favorite in The Bible, and I don't know if I'll be able to stop once I begin. The first thing that amazes me about her is that she believed in God when she knew almost nothing about Him. Literally, all that she knew about God, (as far as we know), was that He had parted the Red Sea, and that He had helped the Israelites to defeat the great kings Sihon and Og. That's it. I mean, yes those are incredible things that God did, but to turn to a foreign God with her whole heart, when she had only heard a few stories about Him through word-of-mouth? That is some unbelievable faith.

Secondly, she didn't just believe God and then do nothing...she acted out her new found faith by risking her very life to shelter the spies from Israel. As of yet, Israel had done nothing for her except arrive in the land and threaten to destroy her city. And yet, Rahab trusted that God knew what He was doing, and that in His mercy, He could rescue her and her family from destruction. She humbly asked the spies to make her a promise: whoever was in her house with her at the time Jericho was overthrown, would be saved. As a sign, she kept the scarlet rope hanging in the window. We know the story...when the walls of Jericho came down, only Rahab and those with her escaped with their lives. 

One of the biggest things I love about this story, though, is what happened after that. Rahab could have simply been glad to have survived, hung around Jericho, perhaps started to rebuild her life, but no. She chose to join herself to the people who had, from afar, introduced her to the God she now served. Do you realize how difficult it must have been for her, those first few months or even years? She knew nothing of Israelite customs, laws, or beliefs, except the core faith in the One True God. She was an outsider, and not only that, she was a harlot. In essence, she was the epitome of what the Israelites would have turned away from in disgust. And yet, through God's grace, she did not let her past life define her! Though there were still consequences from it, she did not let that stop her from being used of God. Rahab eventually married an Israelite leader named Salmon. They had a son named Boaz, who married Ruth and had Obed, who was the father of Jesse, who was the father of King David. So from Rahab's great-great-grandson came the line that went down through the generations, preserved by God, to Jesus, the Saviour of the world. I can guarantee you, if you had asked anyone in Israel if a woman like Rahab could be used of God to bring the Messiah to earth, they would have laughed at you. And yet, her legacy of unwavering faith still lives today! Wow. I thank God for the incredible example of Rahab, and I pray that I will be as filled with faith in God as she was!
Mykaela
P.S. For those of you who enjoy reading, there is a book about Rahab called "Pearl in the Sand" by Tessa Afshar. I HIGHLY recommend it!! Obviously we know only little about her life, but Ms. Afshar did an amazing job of speculating without going out of the confines of what COULD have happened. :) 

2 comments:

  1. Elizabeth WilliamsMay 2, 2016 at 7:15 AM

    It's encouraging to know that God can use ANYBODY! He can totally turn a life around!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So true!! He turned mine around! :) Praise The Lord!

      Delete

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