4 visits. 4 opportunities. 4 lessons.
The year was around 1273 BC. Rahab lived in a city called Jericho and was known publicly as Rahab the prostitute. It is quite obvious that in order to get a label like that you’d have to be practicing prostitution for a long time. Long enough for most people in the city to know.
Visit #1. Opportunity #1.
People would visit her house for her services.
Here’s an opportunity - a financial opportunity.
For her services, she would be paid. And she was paid. Paid by people long enough for her to be known publicly as Rahab the prostitute. Chances are, she was abused.
Lesson#1: Certain 'opportunities' create labels.
Visit #2. Opportunity #2.
One day, two men came to visit her. These were not her clients.
There was a story developing outside Jericho. This story was about a move of God. God was leading a group of people to occupy land by displacing nations and Kings that were mightier than them.
Here’s a short version of the story in Rahab’s own words quoted from a conversation with the two men who came to visit her:
“I know that God has given you the land. We’re all afraid. Everyone in the country feels hopeless. We heard how God dried up the waters of the Red Sea before you when you left Egypt, and what he did to the two Amorite kings east of the Jordan, Sihon and Og, whom you put under a holy curse and destroyed. We heard it and our hearts sank. We all had the wind knocked out of us. And all because of you, you and God, your God, God of the heavens above and God of the earth below”
These two men who came to visit her hadn’t come for her services. They had come to spy out the land (Jericho) that God was about to give them. They were men who were in the middle of a move of God.
Here’s an opportunity - an opportunity to help the move of God.
Rather than giving up these two men, she welcomed them and protected them. The reward? When Jericho was eventually destroyed, she was spared. Not only was she spared, she eventually became part of the people of God who were enjoying a move of God.
Lesson #2: When you help the move of God, you become part of the move of God.
Visit #3. Opportunity #3.
It had been a few weeks since the two men had visited Rahab’s house. One day a few people came to visit her. Her father. Her mother. Her brothers. Her sisters. All who belonged to her. Why were they there? They were there because Jericho’s destruction and Rahab’s escape was imminent.
Earlier as Rahab helped the two spies, this is how the conversation went:
Rahab: “Now promise me by God. I showed you mercy; now show my family mercy. And give me some tangible proof, a guarantee of life for my father and mother, my brothers and sisters—everyone connected with my family. Save our souls from death!” “Our lives for yours!” said the men. “But don’t tell anyone our business. When God turns this land over to us, we’ll do right by you in loyal mercy.” The men told her, “In order to keep this oath you made us swear, here is what you must do: Hang this red rope out the window through which you let us down and gather your entire family with you in your house—father, mother, brothers, and sisters and all who belong to you.”
Here’s an opportunity: as long as Rahab’s family were in Rahab’s house, they would escape too.
And escape they did.
Lesson #3: When you become part of the move of God, use the opportunity to invite others into it too.
Visit #4. Opportunity #4.
This visit is unique. Not a client. Not a spy. Not her parents. She is about to receive a visitor from her own womb. She’s pregnant. She gives birth to a baby boy called Boaz.
Here’s an opportunity: an opportunity to be a mother.
And what a fine job she must have done as a mom. Boaz grew up to be a great man and a kind man. Boaz became the father of Obed and Obed the father of Jesse and Jesse the father of King David. Eventually, even Jesus comes from this family tree.
Lesson #4: When you become part of the move of God, you have absolutely no idea about the incredible legacy that part will produce.
"By faith the prostitute Rahab, because she welcomed the spies, was not killed with those who were disobedient." Hebrews 11:31 "(By faith) Rahab the prostitute was considered righteous for what she did when she gave lodging to the spies and sent them off in a different direction." James 2:25
By faith, labels can be erased and re-written. Rahab the prostitute to Rahab the righteous.
Choose faith today. Choose to partner with the move of God today. Choose to invite others into the move of God today. Choose to leave a legacy today.