It’s interesting that one of the first characters we encounter in the book of Joshua is Rahab, who protects the two spies Joshua sends ahead of the congregation. She was no where near the unwitting player one might have suspected she’d be. Her proximity to the margins of the camp not only made her profession as prostitute or “sexual technician” easier but, as she provided housing to passers by, she also garnered the latest news and gossip they readily shared. So when she was approached to provide safety for the Israelite spies she knew exactly who they were. She had heard about their flight from Egypt to escape the bondage their families had endured for a few generations now. She’d heard about their God, sometimes called the desert God because of Moses’ initial encounter with him. She’d heard about how this God chose these people and had exercised his grace and his generosity on their behalf throughout their journey.

“I know that the Lord has given you the land, and that your terror Is fallen upon us, and that all the inhabitants of the land faint because of you.
“For we have heard how the Lord dried up the water of the Red Sea for you,…and what you did unto the two kings of the Amorites, that were on the other side Jordan, Sihon and Og, whom you utterly destroyed.
“And as soon as we had heard these things, our hearts did melt, neither did there remain any more courage in any man, because of you: for the Lord your God, his is God in heaven above, and in earth beneath.” {Joshua 2:9-11}

She was happy to spirit them away, hiding them on the roof of her dwelling, covering them with stalks of flax. She was happy to get their promise to equally protect her whenever that protection might be needed for herself and for her family members. She let them down with a cord through the window and admonished them to hide for three days before resuming their journey. This would give the king’s search party time to return. They agreed to her wishes and requested only that she hang the same line of scarlet thread from the window from which they’d escaped so they would know their protection extended to everyone in that household.
Not only was she blessed because of her fearlessness and generosity, her story prevails with the “now faith” people listed in the New Testament book of Hebrews.

“By faith Rahab the prostitute was not destroyed with the people in her city who refused to obey God. For she had given a friendly welcome to the spies. {Hebrews 11:31}

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