Daily Devotions – Who is Rahab?



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Joshua 2:8-14 (NIV)

Before the spies lay down for the night, she went up on the roof and said to them, “I know that the Lord has given you this land and that a great fear of you has fallen on us, so that all who live in this country are melting in fear because of you. 10 We have heard how the Lord dried up the water of the Red Sea for you when you came out of Egypt, and what you did to Sihon and Og, the two kings of the Amorites east of the Jordan, whom you completely destroyed.11 When we heard of it, our hearts melted in fear and everyone’s courage failed because of you, for the Lord your God is God in heaven above and on the earth below. 12 “Now then, please swear to me by the Lord that you will show kindness to my family, because I have shown kindness to you. Give me a sure sign 13 that you will spare the lives of my father and mother, my brothers and sisters, and all who belong to them—and that you will save us from death.” 14 “Our lives for your lives!” the men assured her. “If you don’t tell what we are doing, we will treat you kindly and faithfully when the Lord gives us the land.”

Another peculiar name in the genealogy of Jesus is Rahab, the great-great grandmother of King David and the mother of Ruth’s second husband Boaz. Rahab was a prostitute. But she was from the city of Jericho which was an enemy of God’s people, Israel. This is not a woman you would expect to included as an ancestor of Jesus! But in this passage Rahab shows that she fears God far more than anything else and is willing to help the people of Israel. This fear, similar to Isaiah 11:3, is not simply being afraid, but caring far more about what God thinks and what God wants than anything else. That “fear” of God allowed Rahab to become part of God’s family and play a major role in the coming of Jesus! In a world where people want to do great things to make a difference we do not often start from a place of fear. That does not mean we should be afraid of what might happen, but have a mind and heart that cares far more about what God wants and desires than anything else.

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