“…Rahab the harlot and her father’s household and all she had, Joshua spared;” Joshua 6:25a; NASB
The end of another year is here. It has been an interesting year for all of us. I always like to set aside extra quiet time at year’s end to reflect on the previous year and pray about the new one. Reflection can be a powerful practice when done in prayer. Without God’s guidance, however, reflection can lead to emotional ups or downs that come from our own understanding of things. When left to our own devices, we can fool ourselves into thinking things are one way when they are actually another. In prayer, we will see things from God’s spiritual perspective, which can differ greatly from what we see in the natural. For Rahab, this was certainly the case.
Scripture tells us that Rahab was a harlot. Some believe she was an innkeeper, but it was more likely a brothel. She was also a Gentile who did not worship the God of Abraham but had heard about Him. She lived in Jericho at the time that Israel was about to conquer it. The future could not have looked very promising to her and the people of Jericho. They already heard about God parting the Red Sea and Israel defeating two kings of the Amorites. It was only a matter of time before Israel would turn their attention toward them.
Joshua, Israel’s leader, sent two spies to check out the area before their invasion. We are told, “they went and came into the house of a harlot whose name was Rahab, and lodged there” (Josh. 2:1b). We’re never told why they picked that house. They probably had their reasons, but we can easily surmise it was God that led them there. We can conclude this because of what resulted from their decision. No man could have predicted the result. Rahab would give birth to Boaz, the great-grandfather of king David. She became part of the bloodline of our Savior Jesus Christ (see Mt. 1:5-16).
Regardless of how things appear on the outside, God has a plan for the good of those who love Him (see Rom. 8:28). Our job is to be available for and obedient to His will, faithfully following His Holy Spirit’s guidance. In faith, we should pray, believing the Lord hears and answers our prayers. In Hebrews 11:31, we read, “By faith Rahab the harlot did not perish along with those who were disobedient, after she had welcomed the spies in peace.” The Gentile prostitute knew the God of Israel was more powerful than the gods of the Egyptians and the Amorites. He also proved Himself faithful to His people. That was enough for her to put faith in Him, and that faith saved her.
Spend some extra time in prayer as we usher in the New Year. Examine the past years with humility; seeking the lessons He is providing through those experiences. Then have faith the Lord will use the lessons learned in years past to bless others through you in the years to come.
Happy New Year and God bless you all!!