Daily Devotionals

Hall of Faith Week 7 Thursday

It was by faith that Rahab the prostitute was not destroyed with the people in her city who refused to obey God. For she had given a friendly welcome to the spies. Hebrews 11:32

The other day I was eating at a restaurant and found myself frustrated with my waiter. The food was cold when it finally came to my table, and I was unfortunately judgmental. However, my mindset completely changed after having a conversation with the waiter at the end of our meal. Before he walked away, he looked at our table and said, "Thank you for your patience and understanding. My little boy just got a life-altering diagnosis, and I have been trying to put one foot in front of the other all day." When he said those words, I felt about 1 inch tall, and my stomach dropped. We truly never understand what could be going on in another person's life. How quickly can we turn to judge someone without knowing their story or what they are walking through that day! While we humans are judgmental, God is much more patient and understanding. Where we see failure, He sees their story. He even sees potential when the rest of the world writes a person off.


When the Israelites prepared to take the land that God had promised, Joshua 2 tells us that they had an unlikely accomplice. Joshua had sent two spies to assess the situation in Jericho. He wanted to see how the Israelites could overtake the land. The news that there were two Israelite spies in Jericho traveled quickly. It also became known throughout Jericho that the spies had been to Rahab’s house. Rahab was a prostitute in Jericho. The king's men went over to Rahab's house to find these Israelite spies. At this point, Rahab had two options: she could take the king's men to the spies who were hidden on her roof, or she could risk her life by lying to the king’s men and tell them that the spies had already left her house. In an act of courageous faith, Rahab told the king’s men that the spies were no longer at her house and sent them away. When she went back to the spies, she acknowledged to them that their God, the God of Israel, was the true God. She promised to help them escape from Jericho if they would save her life and the lives of her family when they conquered Jericho.  The spies agreed and made an oath with her to save her and her family.


Although she was likely fearful about her situation, Rahab demonstrated courageous faith. She risked her safety. If the king's men discovered she lied to them, she probably would have been in serious trouble. She gave up all of the false gods that she worshiped, thus forsaking her own culture, family, and people to follow God. Although Rahab gave up much, she also gained everything. She gained life and salvation. Hebrews 11:2 includes Rahab as someone notable for her faith, telling us that Rahab’s faith is what led to her salvation.


No one would have expected for Rahab to be the heroine of this story. No one would have expected this woman with a sinful past to save the spies in Jericho and, therefore, the Israelite people. We learn from her story that God can and will use anyone. No one is too far gone. God always has a story that He alone is writing. Ask God to give you eyes to see beyond others’ outward appearance, then reach out with love and patience to those hurting.

Moving Toward Action

Is there someone in your life whom you have given up on or written off? Instead of writing them off, begin praying for them. Pray that they would have an encounter with God and that He would move in their hearts and lives. Look for opportunities to encourage and pour into them, and trust God with the results. Maybe the person you have given up on is yourself. Perhaps you think that you are too far gone and that there is no way God could do big things in your life. My friend, I assure you that God never has and never will give up on you.  Ask Him to use you to accomplish big things for Him, and believe that He will do it!

Going Deeper

Read Joshua 2:1-24 (NLT)

Then Joshua secretly sent out two spies from the Israelite camp at Acacia Grove. He instructed them, “Scout out the land on the other side of the Jordan River, especially around Jericho.” So the two men set out and came to the house of a prostitute named Rahab and stayed there that night.

But someone told the king of Jericho, “Some Israelites have come here tonight to spy out the land.” So the king of Jericho sent orders to Rahab: “Bring out the men who have come into your house, for they have come here to spy out the whole land.”

Rahab had hidden the two men, but she replied, “Yes, the men were here earlier, but I didn’t know where they were from. They left the town at dusk, as the gates were about to close. I don’t know where they went. If you hurry, you can probably catch up with them.” (Actually, she had taken them up to the roof and hidden them beneath bundles of flax she had laid out.) So the king’s men went looking for the spies along the road leading to the shallow crossings of the Jordan River. And as soon as the king’s men had left, the gate of Jericho was shut.

Before the spies went to sleep that night, Rahab went up on the roof to talk with them. “I know the Lord has given you this land,” she told them. “We are all afraid of you. Everyone in the land is living in terror. For we have heard how the Lord made a dry path for you through the Red Sea when you left Egypt. And we know what you did to Sihon and Og, the two Amorite kings east of the Jordan River, whose people you completely destroyed. No wonder our hearts have melted in fear! No one has the courage to fight after hearing such things. For the Lord your God is the supreme God of the heavens above and the earth below.

“Now swear to me by the Lord that you will be kind to me and my family since I have helped you. Give me some guarantee that when Jericho is conquered, you will let me live, along with my father and mother, my brothers and sisters, and all their families.”

“We offer our own lives as a guarantee for your safety,” the men agreed. “If you don’t betray us, we will keep our promise and be kind to you when the Lord gives us the land.”

Then, since Rahab’s house was built into the town wall, she let them down by a rope through the window. “Escape to the hill country,” she told them. “Hide there for three days from the men searching for you. Then, when they have returned, you can go on your way.”

Before they left, the men told her, “We will be bound by the oath we have taken only if you follow these instructions. When we come into the land, you must leave this scarlet rope hanging from the window through which you let us down. And all your family members—your father, mother, brothers, and all your relatives—must be here inside the house. If they go out into the street and are killed, it will not be our fault. But if anyone lays a hand on people inside this house, we will accept the responsibility for their death. If you betray us, however, we are not bound by this oath in any way.”

“I accept your terms,” she replied. And she sent them on their way, leaving the scarlet rope hanging from the window.

The spies went up into the hill country and stayed there three days. The men who were chasing them searched everywhere along the road, but they finally returned without success.

Then the two spies came down from the hill country, crossed the Jordan River, and reported to Joshua all that had happened to them. “The Lord has given us the whole land,” they said, “for all the people in the land are terrified of us.”