(Click here for a video of John reading this Catch.)
Rahab the prostitute … was shown to be right with God by her actions when she hid those messengers and sent them safely away by a different road. James 2:25
Rahab was a woman who heard from God. Not too terribly different than Mary, or Tamar, or my wife, or any other woman for that matter, because women hear from God just as easily as men. The thing that set Rahab apart was that she not only heard from God, she acted on what she heard. That’s what got her into not only the Hall of Faith in Hebrews and the lineage of Jesus in Matthew 1, it got her into the Book of James where faith without works is dead. She had heard that God was with these people. She knew about the miracle crossing of the Red Sea, and their defeat of two Amorite kings, Sihon and Og, and she had an idea her town of Jericho was next. So when she ran into the two spies who were checking out the city, she hid them and then, when the authorities came looking, she told them they had been there but they had left by another way. In other words, “They went thataway!”
“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 your God is the supreme God of the heavens above and the earth below” (Joshua 2:9-11).
That’s a pretty blanket statement of belief, i.e., the supreme God over heaven and earth. That’s coming from an individual with no former history in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Forget whatever god she worshiped prior to this. She has encountered the true God, feared Him, believed in Him and acted on that belief. This was greater faith than many of the men already following that God who got wet feet at the sight of Canaanites in whose sight they appeared as grasshoppers.
And forget that she was a prostitute. That was no big deal. Evangelical Christians always make a big deal about fact that she was a prostitute. Hey, we’re all sinners — just different flavors. The bigger deal was that she was a woman. A common fallacy among evangelical Christians is that God doesn’t speak to women, especially when there are plenty of men around. Except that, with plenty of men around, God chose to speak to and through this woman. Herein lies the lesson for us today: Believe the witness of women who are following Christ.
My wife hears from God. God speaks to me through her. She is gifted. Her words are true. This is my beloved daughter, says the Lord; Hear her.