Rahab the Rescuer (Joshua 2:1-21)
– When someone asks you to describe yourself, what is the first thing that you say?
– Your Job? Your Race? Your past experiences? Where you came from? Likes or Dislikes?
– I remember the 1st time my kids introduced me as “a Pastor”, instead of a Firefighter.
– What would your moniker be? I like “The Korean Zombie” Chan Sung Jung.
– He was “The Zombie” but when he went international, a commentator added “Korean”.
– I guess that’s how they saw him. Not as an “unstoppable fighting machine”, but as a “Korean” unstoppable fighting machine.
– How do you think others would describe you? What is the first thing they would say?
– How do you want to be remembered?
(Read) Joshua 2:1-21
– Rahab, prostitute and innkeeper living in Jericho, in the land of Canaan. (Gentiles, sinners, pagans)
– An outcast in society, seen as damaged goods. (How do we see prostitutes in our culture today?)
– Her house was connected to the wall, and near the gate, easy access for “visiting” men.
– Even though Rahab knew the men were spies, and plotting the destruction of her town, and going to conquer the whole land, she rescued them, because she believed in the power of their God!
- Anyone who trusts in God will never be dis-graced. (Be apart from God’s unmerited favor.)
– There are many scriptures in the New Testament showing the Lord’s redeeming power for the outcast. But this is not a NEW concept!
– Hebrews 13:8, Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.
– The same God redeemed the immoral woman, as redeemed Rahab the Prostitute.
– God’s has ALWAYS shown grace and mercy to anyone who calls upon his name!
– Verse 11, Rahab says, “For the Lord your God is the supreme God of the heavens above and the earth below.”
– She had heard of the miracles that God had done and battles they had won, and believed!
– Rahab should have been disqualified, but she wasn’t. God’s grace is magnified in the lives of the broken and disenfranchised! (This story is a witness to this fact.)
– God can use anyone, at any time, who has faith:
– Hebrews 11:31, It was by faith that 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 chapter 11 is a “who’s who” of great examples of faith!
– Other people listed are: Noah, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, Moses, David, and Samuel.
– Father of the Faith, Kings, and Prophets …not prostitutes. Rahab made the list too!
* Faith demonstrated is faith remembered.
- Faith without deeds is like a rope without an anchor.
– Rescue rope has 9000lbs of strength to carry a 300lbs load. But if it is not properly anchored, it cannot rescue anyone.
– James 2:14, What good is it, dear brothers and sisters, if you say you have faith but don’t show it by your actions? Can that kind of faith save anyone? (Faith of mere words, not heart change…)
– Example: Rescue Rope System: Every part has redundancy, and is “safety-ed” by a Tech. How can I believe that you trust the system if you won’t volunteer to be the “patient”?
– James 2:25-26, Rahab the prostitute is another example. She was shown to be right with God by her actions when she hid those messengers and sent them safely away by a different road. 26 Just as the body is dead without breath (meaning “the Spirit”), so also faith is dead without good works.
– Rahab’s actions displayed her faith. (You can’t have one without the other.)
– She could have used the scarlet rope to save herself, but she didn’t. Instead, she used it to save the people of God.
– “Saying something” and “Doing something” are not the same thing.
– Example: Facebook makes us feel like we are doing something, but we aren’t really. We “share” articles without reading them, and make videos of ourselves “talking” about issues instead of actually “doing” something about them.
– ORH 22 campaign: 100 shares, 1000 newsfeeds, not one donation! (Even from me!!) (Maybe they should have asked us to dump ice water on our heads?)
– George Toles: Literacy school in Cambodia (Ultra-liberal, Bernie Sanders, Unjust war…)
* Words relay your intentions. Actions display your impact.
– The Bible is very clear about Grace vs. Works:
– You are saved by Grace alone, through Faith alone, in Christ alone. (Indisputable)
– Good Works are the “outward testimony” of an “inward transformation”.
- Rahab was a homewrecker, but now she is a family member.
– Rahab was rescued and brought back to live with the Israelites.
– A refugee rescued from an enemy war-torn country, different race, culture, and heritage.
– She was accepted in, and not treated like an “outsider” because she was different.
– She became family! Not a Servant, a Sister!
– Romans 8:15-17a, So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. Now we call him, “Abba, Father.” 16 For his Spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are God’s children.17 And since we are his children, we are his heirs…. (Prince & Princess)
– She is Included in the genealogy of the Messiah, in Matthew 1:5.
– Rahab is King David’s Great, Great G-ma. & Jesus’ earthly Great G-ma to 30th power.
– Praise God that He restores us and gives us grace!
– You are NOT the sum of the choices you’ve made. They do not make you who you are.
– What describes you is not what defines you. Not “Who you are”, it’s “Whose you are”.
* Why is it always “Rahab the Prostitute”? (It’s not “Moses the Murderer” or “David the Adulterer”)
– Highlighting her sinful history only further magnifies the power of God’s mercy.
– It breaks the illusion that if someone is doing something great for God it must be because they are great. Not true!
– She went from “Rahab the Prostitute” to “Rahab the Rescuer”, but that’s not the name that anyone remembers. (People who met her would say, “Oh yeah! You’re the prostitute, right?”)
– “Prostitute” became her moniker. Not who she was, just the name people remembered.
– Like “The Korean Zombie”. It’s just a name. His legacy is being a humble but fierce fighter! (Most people don’t even know his real name anyway.)
– Don’t let the world define you. Don’t use “the world’s standards” as a benchmark for your life.
– The world is broken, so it is a “standard for failure”.
– Just because the broken clock has been right twice, doesn’t mean you should set your watch to it.
I’ve got Good News:
– Lamentations 3:22-24, The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease. 23 Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning. 24 I say to myself, “The Lord is my inheritance; therefore, I will hope in him!”
– God’s mercies abound for those who would believe in Him, and put their faith into action!
– Believer: You are a Child of God! Rescued and Redeemed! Is that how people see you?
– Is that how YOU would describe yourself?
– How do YOU want to be remembered?
– prayer –