Know who is one of the unsung heroes of the Bible? The prostitute Rahab, she’s simply not talked about enough in sermons today.
We’re working our way through the book of Joshua at my church right now and just covered chapter two last weekend. Rahab has been on my mind all week.
Here’s a woman who makes her living sleeping with the men and visitors to the city of Jericho. Even in today’s society she’d be looked down upon. But the Israelite spies show up at her door.
What was she thinking in that moment? More customers?
They tell her who they are. Now, she would have known that their presence within the walls of her city meant that the Israelites were coming to destroy Jericho. Common logic is that she should have summoned the authorities, screamed, spit on them.
But Rahab has heard of the works their God has done, from parting the Red Sea to favoring them in war, and she wants what they have. She asks them to spare her and in a move that most Christian fiction publishers wouldn’t print, the prostitute brings the men into her house and hides them. When Jericho officials show up at her house she bold-face lies in order to save God’s people.
After the spies leave, Rahab could have gone back on her word and reported them. She knew where in the hills they were hiding. But she didn’t, she chose to have faith in God. Believing that the Israelites would come back to Jericho and save her. They did. When they took Jericho they killed everyone but Rahab and her family.
So why all the talk of this prostitute? Well, the thing is Rahab understood something in two minutes that many of us Christians struggle with for years.
God could care less about your past. The bad stuff, the sin in your past is never an obstacle to God.
I’ve heard “I’m not good enough” from people too many times. We never have this moment from Rahab, she gets the chance to be one of God’s children and doesn’t give a second thought to her prostitute past. Within the first minutes of being a Christian she sins again by lying, but God knows her heart.
This lady of the night goes on to be mentioned three times in the New Testament. In the faith chapter (Hebrews 11:31), among the likes of Abraham and Jacob, Rahab is praised for her faith. James (2:25) tells us that Rahab the prostitute was considered righteous by God from the moment she hid the spies onward. And the greatest mention falls in the book of Matthew (1:5) because God blessed Rahab by placing her in the lineage of Jesus.
Yes, one of Christ’s ancestors was a lady of the night.
God can use anyone. Your baggage doesn’t scare Him – it scares you. Don’t let it be an obstacle for his blessings in your life