Rahab was a prostitute living in Jericho when Joshua led the people of Israel to march against the city and destroy it.
She had the opportunity to meet the spies before D-day, hid them, and made a deal with them, saving not only herself but her entire family. Side note: Isn’t it amazing that the ‘black sheep’ of the family became the savior of the family?
Why did Rahab go into prostitution? Maybe she started as a temple prostitute (a revered position in idol nations of old) or maybe she chose the profession. We have no idea, and that’s okay. As a matter of fact, her past became of little consequence in the unveiling of her future.
Like every other person in Jericho and the larger Canaan region, Rahab had heard about the Israelites. But more importantly, she had heard about their God. And in a moment of destiny, when she saw the chance for a better life, she took it.
Now, that her story has been rewritten and included in the Hallmark of Faith, Rahab has a few things that she wants you to know:
1. Be a true believer.
Like everyone else in Jericho, I had heard about the Israelites and their God. Travellers brought the news to the city wall where I lived. People whispered about it at the temples. Women gathered in wonder at the market. And the more I heard about Him, the more I believed. He had to be supreme God of the heavens above and the earth below.
Which other god had done such terrible things? I heard He brought Egypt to her knees. He parted the Red Sea and then the Jordan. And destroyed great kings like King Og of Bashan and King Sihon of the Amorites. Oh, He had to be the Almighty God.
So, I believed because I had heard about Him.
No, I didn’t see the miracles, I only heard about them. But that was enough for me.
You have heard about Him, too, haven’t you? Then you need to believe that He is God and that He is Almighty. Don’t be like His own people who didn’t just hear but also saw the miracles of the ten plagues and the Red Sea, and yet still doubted Him.
2. Let your posture match your desire.
Have you ever wondered how I thought to identify the two Israelite spies when they came to Jericho? The whole city was locked up in terror; no one was coming in and going out at will. The spies outwitted the watchmen and soldiers but they could not escape me. I knew who they were because I was watching out for them and waiting for them.
My desire was for a new lease of life. And that meant that I had to throw myself at the mercy of the chosen, special people, the Israelites. So, there was no way I was going to miss any opportunity I got.
You may be afraid and uncertain, like I was. But you need to make yourself ready for the opportunities that could come your way, the opportunities that could deliver your desires right into your hand. Don’t be passive or unbothered. Let your posture match your desire.
3. Dare to ask.
I was a prostitute, an outsider, from an enemy nation. A person couldn’t get more disqualified for a favour than that. But I wanted something from the people of Israel and from their famously powerful God. So, I took the biggest risk of my life to save the spies and then I dared to ask a favour in return. What would it hurt? If they refused, it only meant that I would die with all my people in Jericho, a fate that was already waiting of me.
Like me, you may be the least qualified for a request or a favour from someone. This doesn’t mean that you should self-reject. Take a chance. Go all out.
4. Your past does not disqualify you from God’s best in the future.
How did a prostitute with a sordid past become a hero of faith named with Abraham, Moses, Joshua and other mighty people of God? How could someone who has done the despicable things that I had done become an ancestor of the Holy One, the Messiah of the world?
God changed my story. I gave Him a chance and He gave me a chance. I wanted salvation and life for myself and my relatives. I wanted it so desperately that I took the risk of hiding the Israelite spies and making a bargain. I acted based on what I believed. And God responded.
If you give Him a chance, He will respond to you, too. He can change your story. He can unfold a beautiful new story for you that would not be limited by your past.