Joshua 2: 1-21 – The World Behind the Text

This week we are looking deeper at Joshua 2: 1-21.  This is the story fo the spies in Jericho and Rahab. She is mentioned in Hebrews 11 as a hero of the faith; this week we will look closer at her story and see what she can teach us about faith.  Today we’ll look at the world behind the text of this passage.  

Jericho in that point of time would have been seen as an impenetrable fortress.  It is one of the oldest cities in human history and the walls there date back centuries before the Israelites were there. I’ve been blessed enough in my life to have seen these very walls, and it is quite impressive.   

We read the story of Joshua and if we aren’t careful, we will come away a little unimpressed.  They had much success in battle, but never conquered the entire Promised Land, which would be a problem for them throughout the rest of scripture.  But remember who they were, not who we see them as.  They were a nomadic people with no established homeland, going against cities and people who have been established for centuries.  

Now they did have the advantage of respect/fear.  The people of the Land knew the Lord was on their side.  

Let’s talk about Rahab for a second as well, since she is the hero of faith who we are looking at this week.  Scripture tells us that she was a prostitute, so she would have been looked down upon many, but it interesting that she seems to have some respect within her community, as her family seems to be present within the conversation and she is summed to the king to talk, seemingly with some level of respect.  

This passage shows us that good can be done by “unlikely” persons and is a call to remember that God’s grace is available to all, and all persons are able to be agents of that grace.  This passage is a call to remember that truth, for Rahab becomes a part of that very family. This passage also shows us that God’s grace always in graphs all who become a part through faith.  

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