Do you not consider it naivety and sheer foolhardiness for Rahab (A most unlikely helper) to have endangered her life and that of her loved ones by hiding strangers who may never keep to their own end of a mutual agreement?
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Is it a risk worth taking?
Our story continues…
One fateful evening, frenzied commercial traders were in a hurry to exit the city gates before they were shut for the night. Rahab was not the least perturbed. She would gladly play hostess to as many who could not make it past the gates before 6:00 pm. This would mean more money to her coffers!
However, she noticed there were 2 scarcely-masked strangers nosing around her tavern like stray men, as though they sought for someone with an unsure description. Rahab watched them closely and observed that they were foreigners, suspecting they must be Jews. She gave them a signal: an invitation.
They soon found themselves in her tavern, unsure of their fate, while she slowly ruminated over the import of her actions, unsure of her next line of action.
At this time, the town soldiers had gotten wind of the news of two Israelite foreigners in town and were already combing every available closet, whilst breathing threats. Rahab acted quickly, she took the spies to her house… up on the casemate wall.
The King got the word, it was clear that there were Jewish spies amongst them. He dispatched the most gallant of his warriors who combed the city in a frantic frenzy. The chief warrior and assistants made their way to Rahab’s house on the wall.
Dinner at Rahab’s house was interrupted by stomps of angry feet advancing towards her domain. Her house was well spaced and virtually had no defined hideout for the spies.
Almost immediately, she took them to the rooftops, directly under the stalks of flax drying out in the open air. The stocks of flax were quite soggy, with a suffocating stench, but they had to remain there…
In split seconds, many hearts were panting! The sound of a pin could be heard as a deafening silence enveloped the room. However, it was not enough to neutralize the sounds of several hearts pounding at alternating frequencies. She had a message from the King!
Rahab feigned boldness, her quivering lips almost gave her away. The wariors looked intently at her eyes as though the answers were located therein!
And the king of Jericho sent unto Rahab, saying, Bring forth the men that are come to thee, which are entered into thine house: for they be come to search out all the country
And the woman took the two men, and hid them, and said thus, There came men unto me, but I wist not whence they were:
And it came to pass about the time of shutting of the gate, when it was dark, that the men went out: whither the men went I wot not: pursue after them quickly; for ye shall overtake them.
Quite honestly, Rahab was one devious woman, but they had to take her for her words. Why would she want to help the spies at the expense of her life, and everyone else’s in Jericho? Indeed, she was a most unlikely helper! They left almost immediately for the city gates.
Rahab let down a volume of saliva. Heaving a sigh of deep relief, and being carefully convinced that the soldiers were out of sight. She tiptoed to the rooftops to release the men whose clothes were now damp from the huge stalks of smelly flax heap over them. Then she made a passionate appeal!
Joshua 2:9-13 (KJV)
And she said unto the men, I know that the LORD hath given you the land, and that your terror is fallen upon us, and that all the inhabitants of the land faint because of you.
For we have heard how the LORD dried up the water of the Red sea for you, when ye came out of Egypt; and what ye did unto the two kings of the Amorites, that were on the other side Jordan, Sihon and Og, whom ye utterly destroyed.
And as soon as we had heard these things, our hearts did melt, neither did there remain any more courage in any man, because of you: for the LORD your God, he is God in heaven above, and in earth beneath.
Now therefore, I pray you, swear unto me by the LORD, since I have shewed you kindness, that ye will also shew kindness unto my father’s house, and give me a true token:
And that ye will save alive my father, and my mother, and my brethren, and my sisters, and all that they have, and deliver our lives from death.
The trio struck a deal, and she let them go, for she suspected the soldiers might be back. Morestill, her house was no safe haven due to the nature of her business!
Rahab planned on a more tactful mode of escape back to the Israeli campsite!
They reached a mutual agreement: she took heed to certain instructions in order for she and her loved ones to stay alive.
The harlot let them down the wall using the ropes and bade them a hushed farewell. In a matter of minutes, they fled through the mountains, till totally out of sight!
Any sane person would have thought Rahab was insensible, as she was loose. Having hid the very men of whose mission would spell utter doom on her town. Yet she went ahead to play hostess to them.
We must always realise that God uses the foolish things of this world to confound the wise. The 2 spies would never have thought of ending up in the house of a woman…at least, not this particular woman.
The Christian walk is a walk of faith. Our hearts must be open to receive God’s help, in terms of safety and deliverance from the vilest of men. Refusing Rahab’s help would have greatly endangered their lives, as death may be their sad lot.
Rahab was smart enough to have reached a consensus with them before their departure. Unfortunately, some of us have allowed our helpers slip through our fingers, even whilst we had very close contact with them.
Although, Rahab had not known the Lord, yet she had so much faith in Him. Hence, she took this great risk…
Do you know the Lord? If your response is yes, how much risk can you take for His sake?
To be continued…
Thanks for reading, God bless you!!!
IT IS IN BEING SAVED THAT YOU ARE SAFE!