The Scarlet Cord

“By faith Rahab the prostitute did not perish with those who were disobedient, because she had given a friendly welcome to the spies.” Hebrews 11:31

I admire Rahab’s faith. Joshua 2 tells she was a prostitute, her house in the wall of Jericho, who received two Israelite spies who came to view the land. She hid the men from pursuing authorities under stalks of flax on her roof, saying, “I know the LORD has given you the land.” She had heard accounts of God’s mighty deliverances and victories for Israel, and they awakened bold faith in Israel’s covenant God. “The LORD you God, he is God in the heavens above and on the earth beneath.” She bravely asked that they guarantee when they returned to take the land that they spare her father’s whole family.

They agreed: she keep quiet about their reconnaissance mission, and they would deal kindly and faithfully with her and all she gathered in her house. When they returned, she must tie a scarlet cord in the window through which she let them escape. They parted, according to her plan that they hide in the hills until their pursuers returned to the city, “and she tied the scarlet cord in the window.” She not only kept her end of the oath, but in expectant faith prepared for their attack immediately.

And her faith influenced the spies’ confidence! They returned to Joshua, reporting, “Truly the Lord has given all the land into our hands. And also, all the inhabitants of the land melt away because of us.”

How expectant am I that God is Who He says He is, and will do what He says He will do? What scarlet cords of confident faith do I tie to my prayers, my plans, my involvements, my acts of service? How does my trust in “the God of the heavens and the earth” influence that of those I encounter? Rehab’s faith was active and evidenced by her works when “she received the messengers and sent them out by another way.” (James 2:17-18,22,25)

O Lord, “I believe, help my unbelief!” The scarlet of Your blood has won my deliverance. May I tie a cord as a reminder of Your faithfulness on each decision of my days: You saved me, I live by Your mercy, I live for You. (Mark 9:24)

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