By Faith, Rahab Transforms from Harlot to Heroine

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Episode #13: By Faith, Rahab Transforms from Harlot to Heroine


Today’s show looks at the role Rahab, a woman of ill repute, played in conquering Jericho. And also how God’s incredible mercy helped her turn her life around and become an ancestor of kings. Author Tessa Afshar once said, “He wiped out Jericho, and He saved a harlot. What kind of God was this? He seemed at once impossibly holy and ridiculously merciful. How could you tie those two incongruities together? Rahab.”


Rahab lived in the great fortified city of Jericho. As the people of Israel began taking possession of the Promised Land, Jericho stood in their way. As we learned the story of Joshua, Jericho’s stone walls towered high into the sky and surrounded the city – its gates were locked up tight. No one went in or came out of the city undetected by the guards.


To scope out the city to see what obstacles lay ahead, Joshua sent two spies with instructions to come back and give him a full report. To keep from being discovered, the spies took refuge in the house of Rahab. According to the Biblical Archeological Society, the first-century C.E. historian Josephus reports that she kept an inn, so it would appear that Rahab was also a landlady. This likely is why the spies took cover in her home.


After the walls of Jericho had fallen, Joshua told the Israelites to spare Rahab and her entire family, just as the spies had promised Rahab when she hid them. She and her family were the only people in the whole city to be spared. Rahab and her family then became part of the nation of Israel. When Rahab left Jericho, she left behind her life of sin, giving it all up for good. Her decision changed the course of history. In return, she and her family obtained salvation, and she was given a place of honor in God’s story.


Next week- Please join us next time when we discover that even the strongest man who ever lived had a fatal weakness. Tune in to get the inside scoop!


Resources referenced or recommended for further study:


Scripture references:

  • Joshua Chapter 2 through 6
  • Romans 11
  • Matthew 1:5
  • Romans 10:13-14
  • 2 Corinthians 5:20a
  • 1 Samuel 16:7
  • Romans 3:23; 6:23; 10:9, 13


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