Saturday, September 06, 2014

Rahab: The seamless unity of believing and doing

Rahab had a house in a great stone wall. Into this house she brought her family. And they waited. They waited while the enemy crossed the Jordan river. They waited while the enemy marched around the wall, again and again and again. They waited as the enemy shouted the name of their God, and then as the terrible shaking came and crushed the city wall. They waited as the enemy stormed the city. And finally the enemy came for them and brought them to safety.

Rahab trusted enemy spies more than her countrymen. She trusted the God of foreigners more than she trusted her own gods. Not just a little trust either--no, she trusted them with her life and the life of all her family members. So big was her faith in the God of Israel that she was able to convince her family to sit in her house in the great stone wall and wait for deliverance.

All around them, people of the city went on with their lives as usual, believing they were safe behind their great stone wall. They trusted their strength would save them, their wall would save them. And by all of the facts that could be seen, it was very reasonable to believe that.

What was different about Rahab? Why did she pick the Lord of Israel over her country and her gods? What did she see that the others did not?

We who believe in Jesus are like Rahab. Our faith in Him is a house in a stone wall. We sit and wait and know with a certainty that we are safe, that everyone and everything outside the house will be destroyed but deliverance will come to us. We try to tell our family and friends to join us inside the house in a way that is not weird -- but dang! -- it IS weird! It is crazy and illogical given all that is going on outside the house. But it's TRUE.

I am like Rahab. I sit in my room and read my Bible and write. I meet with other believers and discuss the scriptures. I live my life in a way that is different from others because I have seen what others have not. And I cannot un-see it. It is there, as plain as my hand in front of me. I don't know why God has chosen to show me. I am like Rahab the harlot after all, unpure and unworthy.

But I know Jesus is real and He is alive and that makes a difference in my life. And truth be told, I hate salesmen, but I am like them too, trying to convince even you, dear reader, that Jesus is real and He is alive, and you can trust Him to save you. Jesus loves you, and in the seamless unity of loving and doing, He gave His life for you. It may look weird, illogical, and crazy even. But it's TRUE...

Come into the stone wall house with me. Let us wait for His salvation together.

Is it not evident that a person is made right with God not by a barren faith but by faith fruitful in works? The same with Rahab, the Jericho harlot. Wasn’t her action in hiding God’s spies and helping them escape—that seamless unity of believing and doing—what counted with God? (James 2:24-25)

Read about Rahab in Joshua, chapters 2 and 6 

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