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Summary: Rahab and the Spies. (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request - email: gcurley@gcurley.info)

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Reading: Joshua chapter 2 verse 1-24:

Quote:

• A pastor was speaking to his people on the relationship between fact and faith.

• He said, "That you are sitting before me in this church--is fact.

• That I am standing here, speaking from this pulpit--is fact.

• That I believe anyone is listening to me--is faith!"

Quote:

“If you tell a man that there are 300 billion stars in the universe, he'll believe you. But if you tell him a bench has just been painted, he has to touch it to be sure”.

Ill:

• The African impala is an animal that can jump to a height of over 10 feet;

• And cover a distance of greater than 30 feet.

• Yet these magnificent creatures can be kept in an enclosure in any zoo with a 3-foot wall.

• The animals will not jump if they cannot see where their feet will fall.

• They are creatures without faith.

• Faith is the ability to trust what we cannot see,

The most important thing I want you to note about Rahab; was her faith!

• Ultimately that is the most important thing about any person,

• For “without faith it is impossible to please God” (Hebrews chapter 11 verse 6).

Ill.

• There once was a rather rough, uncultured man;

• Who for some reason fell in love with a beautiful vase in a shop window.

• Eventually he bought the vase and put it on the mantelpiece in his room.

• There it became a kind of judgment on its surroundings.

• He had to clean up the room to make it worthy of the vase.

• He changed the curtains because they looked dingy beside it.

• The old chair with the stuffing coming out of the seat would not do.

• The wallpaper and the paint needed redoing.

• Gradually the whole room was transformed.

• Because of the presence of the vase!

Note:

• When you put Christ on the mantel of your heart,

• Your whole life starts to be transformed!

• And if we are not experiencing the work of God in our lives;

• Is it because he is not on the mantel, the centre point!

• At the start of this chapter Rahab is a prostitute; a woman in a house of shame,

• She was engaged in a wicked lifestyle whereby she sold her body to men for money.

• At the end of the chapter - as we will see - she will be a different Rahab

• Someone who will be greatly honoured in God’s hall of fame (Hebrews chapter 11).

Question: What made the difference?

Answer: Her faith!

• Ultimately that is the most important thing about any person,

• For “without faith it is impossible to please God” (Hebrews chapter 11 verse 6).

• This chapter brings to our attention 3 demonstrations of faith,

• And show us that Rahab was a woman of true faith!

(1). Courageous faith (verses 1-7).

1Then Joshua son of Nun secretly sent two spies from Shittim. “Go, look over the land,” he said, “especially Jericho.” So they went and entered the house of a prostitute named Rahab and stayed there.

2The king of Jericho was told, “Look! Some of the Israelites have come here tonight to spy out the land.” 3So the king of Jericho sent this message to Rahab: “Bring out the men who came to you and entered your house, because they have come to spy out the whole land.”

4But the woman had taken the two men and hidden them. She said, “Yes, the men came to me, but I did not know where they had come from. 5At dusk, when it was time to close the city gate, the men left. I don’t know which way they went. Go after them quickly. You may catch up with them.” 6(But she had taken them up to the roof and hidden them under the stalks of flax she had laid out on the roof.) 7So the men set out in pursuit of the spies on the road that leads to the fords of the Jordan, and as soon as the pursuers had gone out, the gate was shut.

(a). Joshuas plan (vs 1):

1Then Joshua son of Nun secretly sent two spies from Shittim. “Go, look over the land,” he said, “especially Jericho.”

Ill:

• One story has dominated the news over the past week;

• A British army informer codenamed "Stakeknife".

• Real name: Alfredo "Freddie" Scappaticci.

• Has for the past 20 years been working inside the Irish Republican Army.

• He was the deputy head of the Provisionals' internal security unit.

• He went into hiding following allegations;

• That he was paid £80,000 a year for 25 years by military intelligence.

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