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April 27, 2021 8:00 am
Today on Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhardt challenges you to become a fully functioning follower of Jesus Christ pagans in Jericho work, their hearts melted. They were in care that Israel, Israel would seem all the plagues of the they had seen a experienced the night of the Passover, they went through the Red Sea saw the Egyptian army and then they were.
They had a walk that followed him in the wilderness in a manner forty-year and they're still worried about going the promise shows you how weak our faith and possibly joining us today on this additional Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhardt Fellowship in the Words the radio ministry of Fellowship Bible church located in Metairie, Louisiana. Let's join Pastor Bill Gebhardt now is once again he shows us how God's word are John Gardner wrote these words he said we are faced with a series of great opportunities brilliantly disguised as unsolvable problems when we are faced with a series of great opportunities really disguised as unsolvable problem. Just imagine what Joshua faced Moses is now dead and he finds it has to lead a nation of refugee slaves who spent the last 40 years just wandering around the wilderness and he has to leave them into a land that is occupied by extremely evil warmongering people and the first thing for him on the agenda is that he has to deal with the distinguished opportunity to conquer one of the most well fortified cities of the ancient world. Jericho meanwhile in Jericho and that very city there's a prostitute and she's having a huge disguised opportunity but from her point of view look like an unsolvable problem she'd heard about the God who delivered his people out of the land of Egypt, the most powerful country on earth at that time.
She also heard that this nation, Israel had already defeated and annihilated to powerful kings on the eastern side of the Jordan River and she knew that her city, Jericho would be next. The question is how does a pagan prostitute handle a problem like this.
Open your Bibles to Hebrews chapter 11 will go there first to show you the answer Hebrews chapter 11 in verse 31 to very famous chapter in the Bible we call it the Hall of Fame of faith you have these tremendous examples of by faith, by faith, by faith what people accomplished by faith. Some of them accomplish great things and had great deliverance and great victories and some of them. By the way just had to endure great persecutions and even death. But they did it all by faith and chapter 11 verse 31 Rahab is introduced as is by faith Rahab the harlot did not perish along with those who were disobedient after she had welcomed the spies in peace better solution. She welcomes the spies in peace know it's interesting how she's described.
She's Rahab the prostitute. She's Rahab the harlot. In fact, the name Rahab is used eight times in the Bible and five times she's called the harlot to think one would've been enough. Why would you keep scone or the harlot over and over again becomes a problem and it's really become a proper lot of Christians. Ever since the Reformation.
A lot of commentators struggle with this idea. Rahab the harlot Christian seed in a different way affect many Christians say you have to translate the will work harlot to innkeeper okay and that's what they wrote but the Hebrew words clearness innkeeper. In fact, AW Pink gray commentator pink said this, he said they were divinely directed to a particular house that is not likely that they were personally conscious of the fact the first piece of the house in which they were shelter was owned by harlot name Rahab, but not that she was plying her evil trade, but that formally she had been a woman of ill fame, and the stigma seem to still cling to her. That's wishful thinking. I do say the least.
The Jewish historian Josephus in antiquities said that she was in innkeeper. The fact that she's a prostitute very important to us to everybody to everyone on this planet. That's a very important fact. I love the way Max Decatur says it is a master caterer said he gets in Rahab, it's okay if you're not okay understand it's okay if you're not okay and that's a Rahab represents for everybody.
It's okay that she's not okay now let's go look at her story in Joshua chapter 2 in the first seven verses of Joshua two Rahab is going to demonstrate her faith.
She can be able to demonstrate that she is a believer. Verse one of chapter 2 of Joshua Ben Joshua the son of nun sent to men, spies secretly from 15 single view the land, especially Jericho, and so they went and they came in the house of a harlot whose name was Rahab, and they lodged their this important Joshua sends out spies not understand what spies do you base by right, that's the idea. If I'm asking the question, is an element of the seat and being a spy or user show up as a white guys, I gotta tell you I'm a spy see what could be done and God tell Josh we saw this last week of chapter 1 did God tell him I'm giving you the land, don't take it take what is yours.
Go get it why Josh was sending in spies that like he's a man of faith to just one in their right not necessarily numbers chapter 13 the first time they got to the Jordan, God told Moses to send in 12 spies that was God's idea is a just going to the land and take it.
He said you send in 12 spies Caleb and Joshua were the only two that that they should wait and take the land so this element of deceit as her leads me to this principle. Faith utilizes wisdom whenever it's possible is not always the best thing to do to just let go and let God. I'm just believing God, I don't, but I'm not applying any wisdom at all. I think you should apply the wisdom, the going into Jericho. As I said earlier, probably the most fortified city in that part of the world 5 miles on the other side of the Jordan River is a beautiful city and it's the center of life of the Canaanites, the Canaanites, if you take that city you right in the middle of Canaanite territory and you have tremendous control over them and so noticed a run into Rahab the harlot right there. Now how did they meet. I don't know the Bible doesn't tell me. Likely they met on the street that's were she would be when she does her trade. I believe it was a divine appointment that God orchestrated between the spies and Rahab and then Rahab takes them back to her place now. There's a lot of good sense in this by the way do men always freak when a place of a harlot are always men coming and going all the time. That's why your harlot. You see, even a foreign man, someone would recognize as a foreigner when they be in and out of the house of the harlot. Of course they would in any city, even in our city here is a consequently it made good logical sense know what I find interesting about it is with the verse two was told the king of Jericho, saying, behold, men from the sons of Israel have come here tonight to search out the land, the king has his own men going out and they recognize people aren't Canaanites, and they said there men from Israel here and Jericho. We know they're there. Men not only they know they're in the city they know where they went. That's what you find in verse three it interesting. It says in the king of Jericho sent word to Rahab and said bring out the men who have come to you who have entered a house for they have come to search out the land. Now this is a little bit interesting at first. If you were the king. Is that what you would do would you just born the house and take a minute to make sense. But they don't discuss it with her. The reason for it has to do with the culture under the laws of Hammurabi, which by the way the Canaanites follow to degree under the laws of Hammurabi. There were two things are evident. One is you never violate a woman's place of residence showed great reverence. Even if she's a prostitute so you would just barge and secondly if there was a woman in her own residence, or even a prostitute can she do something that violates the security the kingdom she hired someone she gets the death sentence and so consequently he will be this good Canaanite woman. She wouldn't do that. It says, but the woman had taken the two men and hidden and said yes. The men come to me. I do not know where they're from and it came when it was time to shut the gate at the dark of the men went out. I do not know where the men went pursue them quickly and you overtake them know what is that that's a whole series of what She's lying.
Okay she just flat out lying is a bit she had brought them up to the roof, and hidden them in his box of flax in order that she could hide them when the roof deceit.
Now that's interesting me. She demonstrates her faith. First she conceals the spies.
Secondly, she lies to protect the spies and then thirdly, she sends the men of the king when a wild goose chase and she's on her for that. As I said, Hebrews 1131 by faith Rahab the harlot did not perish along with those were disobedient after she had welcomed the spies in peace but also in the book of James. That's important James chapter 2 in verse 25.
James is the Lord's brother and he is the one who writes faith without works is dead. He is the one. It's as if you have true saving faith works the following.
That's the point of his book and James uses her and he says this in 225 and in the same weight was not Rahab the harlot also justified by works when she received the message in and sent them out another way.
That's what you done now that's interesting that she demonstrates her face. She clearly has faith, she believe what you heard about God. She put her life on the line for what you believe, and she lied to somebody the fact that you like it does here in good company. A lot of people been bothered by that Donald Campbell used to be. These not of the Lord was is in a Dallas theological seminary. He says this to excuse Rahab for indulging in the common practice is to condone what God condemns the lie of Rahab was recorded but not approved. The Bible proves her faith demonstrated by good works, but not her five false underlying no longer says Rahab's life course is morally wrong. AW Pink said she failed to fully trust God and the fishermen brought the snare of the lie but I'm sure that I don't necessarily believe that all this is warfare. Now the whole idea is the very people that she lied about her spies. The whole point of being aspires to be deceptive.
That's the whole point.
That's what spies do. Just imagine take something like the day the Normandy invasion. The ally spent an enormous amount of time deceiving and trying to make the Germans believe that the landing in France Would Take Pl. in Calais. That's where it would be and that's where the Germans fortified, not Normandy.
Now what this along with that right they should just phone number coming right here. You see, this is the way this works, but not necessarily in war all there is there. There's a very big difference in this not only apply to your own lives. Whenever you go on vacation in the time for week so Micah you ever have certain lights come on your house at night, or even if you're clever enough. Different lights come on at night, or maybe the TV even while you do that you're lying. You know you're not there why you doing that you wanted to see people might look at your house and think that you are there. So I think we have to be very careful and we identify and say this about Rahab and whether she lied or not Rahab demonstrates her faith and now Rahab speaks her faith.
Notice beginning in verse eight it says not before they lay down. She came up to them on the roof and said to the men I know that the Lord is giving you the land and that the terror of US following us that all the inhabitants of the land of melted away before you, for we have heard how the Lord dried up the water the Red Sea before when you came out of Egypt, and what you did to the two kings of the Amorites who were beyond the Jordan and shine on a nod whom you utterly destroyed when we heard in our hearts melted. We have no courage remained in any man longer because of you, for the Lord your God, he is the God he said, she said, in heaven and above and on the earth.
Think of that statement she makes.
She says these three things it's her conclusion.
She says that I know you're the covenant people. I know you belong to God. She said already know that I know that 40 years ago, God delivered you out of the hands of the Egyptians and I believe that to be true.
I also know that you've already destroyed two powerful kings on the easement. I know this and that's most important verse 11. You're the only guy that is the only God in heaven, and he only got on earth she makes a tremendous statement of faith.
And then she shows concern for family and 12 and 13 now therefore, please. Swear to me by the Lord since I have dealt kindly with you, that you also deal kindly with my father's household and give me a pledge of truth and spare my father, my mother, my brothers and my sisters with all who belong to them and deliver our lives from death really an interesting thing for her to say.
Please take care my family is important to me to see is very like the whole family became believers as well is this place on reminds me in the book of acts when the Philippian jailer comes the Christ.
When Paul and Silas ate him believe the Lord Jesus Christ to be saved and it's is any believing the practices he and his whole household were saved. He went back and did it.
She has a deep concern for family what so ironic about this tomato is what James Boyce writes James boy says what an irony here. The inhabitants of Jericho were looking at Israel's God and they were shaking in their sandals, the Israelites, who I'd seen all the mighty works of God over and over again were looking at their problems rather than a God, and they were terrorized by their own unbelief. The pagans in Jericho work, their hearts melted. They were in terror, but Israel's coming Israel would seen all the plagues of Egypt.
They had seen and experienced the night of the Passover, they went through the Red Sea saw the Egyptian army and then they work. They had a rock to follow them in the wilderness and ate manna for 40 years and they're still worried about going in the promised land.
So you how we got faith can possibly be. So Rahab demonstrates her faith and she articulates her faith and now Rahab's faith delivers her and we see that starting in verse 14 is so so the man said to her our life for yours. If you do not tell us this business of ours, and it shall come that when the Lord gives you land that we will deal kindly and faithful with you.
Then she let them down by a rope through the window for house was on the city wall so that she was living on the city wall and it said, and she said to them, go to the hill country so that the pursuers will not happen upon you hide yourself there for three days into the pursuers return and afterward you may go your own way.
The men said there we shall be free from this oath, which we have sworn you have made us which you have made us aware and less when we come into the land you tied a cord of scarlet thread in the window through which you let us done and gather to yourself he said in the house of your father, your mother and your brothers and all your father's household and it shall come about that anyone goes out of the doors of your house and into the street, his blood shall be in your head, and we shall be free, but anyone who was with you in the house, his blood shall be on our head. The hand is laid on. But if you tell this business of ours, then we shall be free from the oath that we are made us wear. This is interesting.
They were let down with the court wrote and it just happens to be. Coincidentally, scarlet which is kind of interesting becomes a most important thing.
Think of the reminders of what it's like, how are people protected from the noetic flight by the arc right if you're in the art are good if you're not, you're not. But the only way you get in the art is how by the door going to the door. It's interesting you get to the New Testament in Jesus as I am the door. If anyone enters through me to be saved on the door.
Think of Israel's history they experience the night of the Passover, when the angel death killed all the firstborn unless right there under the blood of the lamb and then you were safe.
John the Baptist sees Jesus for the first time he starting his ministry and says behold the Lamb of God, it takes away the sins of the world. There's no doubt my mind that when you see this that's what you see with the scarlet cord.
I think the scarlet cord is very very close to the Crimson of the blood of Jesus Christ.
She is saved because their AC. The scarlet cord just as you and I are so Rahab demonstrates her faith and Rahab articulates her faith and Rahab receives deliverance because of her faith and she's Rahab she's a Canaanite Gentile woman prostitute it's okay if you're not okay. That's the whole point of the story we go to Hebrews chapter 11 and you see it. Only two women are in the chapter, Sarah, and Rahab nor the women just goes to Sarah and Rahab, there's a reason I think for that what God's trying to tell something about that when he shows us is this think of God's concern for one individual, no matter where they live, what they do or who they are.
Here is a woman who believes the stories but it and God make sure that woman is saved, it's amazing that shows you the reach of the grace of God he reaches everybody worldwide is exactly what Paul says in Romans that if you really believe there is a God, you have a conscious pharmacy creation.
He said I'll make sure you find out no one falls through the cracks when it comes to God and this woman has a horrific past as a prostitute may be your own pastor's checkered you see much of my past is a very good will welcome your really good company because the truth of the matter is from God's point of view.
No one here has a good past there is anybody here with a good past James said if if you violate one aspect of the law. The ability of the whole Jesus said from God's point of view. If you've ever been angry at anybody your murder. If you have lust for anybody. Your adulterer is if you thought the thought that to you are so in one sense were all harlots. We all have checkered past, but the real wonderful message of the story and that is God can turn the mess of your life into the most beautiful music possible. Just think of where she was and who she was and what she was and end up thinking what she becomes. James and Billy boy says this Rahab became more Jewish than almost all the Jews who were born Jewish. That's Rahab she's a Gentile Canaanite how to become so Jewish while Scripture tells us she married Solomon's Jewish a Jewish man married to Canaanite prostitute is wonderful story of them stop. They had a son, the son's name is Boaz. Now Boaz is really famous for Mary's roof. The whole book of Ruth.
Boaz is the hero, so they have a son named Boaz and he marries Ruth then they have a son and his name is Obed. We don't know a lot about Obed except he's a son, but also it has a son and his name is Jesse, and Jesse has a son and his name is David is amazing to think about others. Absolutely amazing in the lineage. The great King David is Rahab the harlot's an amazing thing when you think about this, but there's more.
Go with me to Matthew chapter 1 for a moment how we a few verses of verses usually skip is a lot to be getting in and you don't want to deal with that.
You just think it's fine to move on verse one says this, the record of the genealogy of Yeshua the Messiah.
The record of the genealogy of Jesus Yeshua the Messiah of Israel, the son of God. Listen, I know how much money is being made now and you probably of sector sampling and stuff and everybody wants to know about the genealogy site. Everybody wants to know where I come from and who I am and all that and some of you probably have really impressive genealogies and then some of you probably don't know from that human point of view I can tell you this is no genealogy in the history of mankind. It's this important is the most important genealogy and all humankind. Nothing compares to it. This is the genealogy of the God man, Jesus Christ. Okay this is the Messiah of Israel. This is the incarnation.
It's is the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah, the son of David, the son of Abraham. Abraham was the father of Isaac.
Isaac was a father Jacob. Jacob was the father of Judah and his brothers. Judah was the father Perez and Sarah at by Taymor Perez was the father has one. His mom was the father mom mom was the father of a been a Daba Benedek was the father may Sean Mason was the father of Solomon Selman was the father of Boaz by Rahab. Boaz was the father of Obed by Ruth and Obed was the father of Jesse, and Jesse was the father of David, the king did not want to say this Rahab was one of the two women named in the Hall of Fame of faith in Hebrews 11, but she's the only woman in the history of the world that you find in Hebrews 11 in Matthew chapter 1. Her name is mentioned twice how honorable is that God would mention her name. The only one in the whole world.
She's a harlot she's a prostitute she's mentioned in Matthew one in Hebrews 11 and you know why God did that because it's okay if you're not 02 pastoral gift card on the radio ministry and fellowship more if you ever miss one of our broadcast or maybe you just like listen to the message one more time. Remember, you can Google a great website called one place.com that's one place.com and you can listen the fellowship and the word online that website you will find on with today's broadcast but also many of our previous audio programs at Fellowship in the Word.
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