Letters to the Family of God

by Joe Franzone | September 23, 2022 | Pastor's Blog

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September 23, 2022

Then Joshua son of Nun secretly sent two spies from Shittim. “Go, look over the land,” he said, “especially Jericho.” So, they went and entered the house of a prostitute named Rahab and stayed there. Joshua 2:1

Dear Friends,


There is a common line of thought strong in the bloodstream of popular Christianity in America that suggests the only kind of people God blesses or uses are those who are morally superior, who are extraordinarily skilled, all fixed up and fueled up, immune to the common disorders of life.


In other words: If you are weak, in trouble, and on the sidelines, it’s your fault—you could have avoided it if you had made better choices and taken more initiative. Dependence is then frowned upon, and strength is celebrated. Your only hope is to do better.


The Woman


The story of the prostitute Rahab calls all that line into question. Rabbinic writings on Rahab tell of a ten-year-old at the time of the Exodus from Egypt involved in prostitution during the forty years of the Israelites’ wanderings in the wilderness. It is a tragedy to think of a person spending forty years being dehumanized.


The City


The destruction of Jericho, the city where Rahab lived (Joshua 1-6), is a story full of danger and espionage. Spies survey, Jericho’s king smelling blood, deals in the dark, and God makes it so only a prostitute stood between Israel’s spies, the king’s officials, and a promise kept.


God’s Mercy


No one in Jericho deserves to live (including Rahab), yet God showed kindness and mercy to a prostitute to stress the riches of His grace. Here we find a glimpse of the gospel. Jesus, by His suffering and death on the cross, saves’ villains, malcontents, rebels, and the immoral. In almost every mention of Rahab in the New Testament (James 2:25, Hebrews 11:31), she is still called ‘the prostitute,’ which only magnifies the grace of her salvation.


In God’s wrath over a city, He remembered His mercy to the most unlikely woman. This story is the story of life. He was revealing that He is truly a merciful and gracious God and that His promise to His people was a real promise. He would keep His promise through a prostitute.


If we asked the question, what kind of person must I be for God to bless and use me? (A question I think really isn’t healthy to ask.) Still, if we took our answer from this story, it would be, the kind of person I must be for God to bless and use is—alive. It is a wonder, isn’t it?

Come behold the wondrous mystery, Christ the Lord upon the tree
In the stead of ruined sinners hangs the Lamb in victory
See the price of our redemption, see the Father’s plan unfold
Bringing many sons to glory, grace unmeasured, love untold.


Come Behold the Wondrous Mystery

May God bless you and give you some deep rest this weekend.


Pastor Joe