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Summary: Just because you have been brought up in an Apostolic church. Sat on the pew to hear praise, prayer, preaching of the Pentecostal message. So you’ve been a part of the body for a long time. So what? It seems God will tolerate more from one who has not

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Joshua 2:1 And Joshua the son of Nun sent out of Shittim two men to spy secretly, saying, Go view the land, even Jericho. And they went, and came into an harlot’s house, named Rahab, and lodged there.

JERICHO (Jee rih’ koh) Place name meaning “moon.” Apparently the oldest city in the world and the first city Israel conquered under Joshua. Their first test of strength after their 40 years of wandering in the wilderness. Jericho is situated in the lower Jordan Valley, which, according to Genesis 13:10, “was well watered everywhere like the garden of the Lord.” The Old Testament town lies beneath tell es-Sultan near one of Palestine’s strongest springs. Jericho was an oasis situated in a hot plain, living in its own world with no major settlement in sight, and lying between the two focal points of Jerusalem and Amman in the mountains to the west and east. It is mentioned in the Bible usually in association with some movement from one side of the Jordan to another—the Israelite invasion, when Ehud takes tribute to the Moabite king, when David sends envoys to the king of Ammon, when Elijah and Elisha cross the Jordan, or when Zedekiah attempts to escape the Babylonians.

Here the Lord ordains the new leader Joshua and gives him the same promises of Moses, sending him out to begin the possession of Cannaan. While sending out spies to observe the city a harlot by the name of Rahab realizes that God is with the Jews and hides the men. RAHAB a Personal name meaning, “broad.” Which was slang for “loose woman”. Also used to depict Egypt and Babylon as the Idol worshippers and ungodly people they were. Her only request was when God gives you the city please save my family and I. Thus the scarlet rope hanging out her window was a sign not to destroy anyone in that house. NOTE her actions saved her and her family. She was not the right race, she was not the right nationality, and she certainly was in the wrong profession. Her life was a shame, her sins were many, but she was accepted into the Lord’s earthly family. Married into the tribe of Judah (praise) from which eventually the Messiah would come. She is even mentioned in the great book of the Faithful Hebrews 11:31By faith the harlot Rahab perished not with them that believed not, when she had received the spies with peace. James in his writing to the church likened her actions to “faith without works is dead”. Because she took action to preserve the spies and save her family. James 2:25 Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers, and had sent them out another way? 26 For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.

God’s grace was great to this harlot Rahab not because of anything she was but because of her faith and acting on her faith. I am so glad that God is merciful to those who do not deserve it. God will allow his great grace to shine into anyone’s heart who is hungry, open, and willing.

NOTICE: Let’s go now to the next great battle after the miracle at Jericho and the victory for God’s people. They were pumped, ready, and eager to conquor the next city Ai. AI (ay’ i) means “ruin” (or possibly “heap”) in the Hebrew language. The city was almost the ruin of Joshua’s leadership (Josh. 7:1-9); it was the ruin of Achan and his family (Josh. 7:16-26); and it suffered complete ruin (Josh. 8:1-29). At Ai, Israel learned they could not take a city known as the ruin if they disobeyed God. Victory did not lie in military strength or wise leadership. It lay in God’s presence. Israel also learned they had hope after defeat. Israel learned to live with a punishing as well as a promising God. One man’s sin caused a ruin for many. Not only lost lives, lost time, lost respect, but a total disregard of God’s law.

Joshua 7:1 But the children of Israel committed a trespass in the accursed thing: for Achan, the son of Carmi, the son of Zabdi, the son of Zerah, of the tribe of Judah, took of the accursed thing: and the anger of the LORD was kindled against the children of Israel.

Achan was with the right people, of the right tribe, (Judah-praise), going in the right direction until he looked, lusted and looted the things from Jericho. It was commanded that all the spoils from Jericho would go into the treasure of the tabernacle and not to the families of Israel. It was the firstfruits of Cannan that belonged to God. Achan saw a garment, gold, and silver that he took and hid in his tent. Really, you can’t hide from God. It caused defeat, death, and dismay for the forces of Israel as they werer sorely whipped at Ai. Joshua cried out to God and God revealed to him the method in which the culprit would be found out.

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