No comments yet

Notes and Questions – November 29

I’ll Be Hope for Christmas

Wk 1 Rahab: Hope from the Least Likely

Joshua 2:1-14

Joshua 2:1-14
​Then Joshua the son of Nun sent two men as spies secretly from Shittim, saying, “Go, view the land, especially Jericho.” So they went and came into the house of a harlot whose name was Rahab, and lodged there. It was told the king of Jericho, saying, “Behold, men from the sons of Israel have come here tonight to search out the land.” And the king of Jericho sent word to Rahab, saying, “Bring out the men who have come to you, who have entered your house, for they have come to search out all the land.” But the woman had taken the two men and hidden them, and she said, “Yes, the men came to me, but I did not know where they were from. It came about when it was time to shut the gate at dark, that the men went out; I do not know where the men went. Pursue them quickly, for you will overtake them.” But she had brought them up to the roof and hidden them in the stalks of flax which she had laid in order on the roof. So the men pursued them on the road to the Jordan to the fords; and as soon as those who were pursuing them had gone out, they shut the gate. Now before they lay down, she came up to them on the roof, and said to the men, “I know that the LORD has given you the land, and that the terror of you has fallen on us, and that all the inhabitants of the land have melted away before you. For we have heard how the LORD dried up the water of the Red Sea before you when you came out of Egypt, and what you did to the two kings of the Amorites who were beyond the Jordan, to Sihon and Og, whom you utterly destroyed. When we heard it, our hearts melted and no courage remained in any man any longer because of you; for the LORD your God, He is God in heaven above and on earth beneath. Now therefore, please swear to me by the LORD, since I have dealt kindly with you, that you also will deal kindly with my father’s household, and give me a pledge of truth, and spare my father and my mother and my brothers and my sisters, with all who belong to them, and deliver our lives from death.” So the men said to her, “Our life for yours if you do not tell this business of ours; and it shall come about when the LORD gives us the land that we will deal kindly and faithfully with you.”

God Saves People with a Past.

Joshua 2:1
Then Joshua the son of Nun sent two men as spies secretly from Shittim, saying, “Go, view the land, especially Jericho.” So they went and came into the house of a harlot whose name was Rahab, and lodged there.

Joshua 2:9
“I know that the LORD has given you the land, and that the terror of you has fallen on us, and that all the inhabitants of the land have melted away before you.

Joshua 2:10
For we have heard how the LORD dried up the water of the Red Sea before you when you came out of Egypt, and what you did to the two kings of the Amorites who were beyond the Jordan, to Sihon and Og, whom you utterly destroyed.

Joshua 2:11
When we heard it, our hearts melted and no courage remained in any man any longer because of you; for the LORD your God, He is God in heaven above and on earth beneath.

1 Timothy 1:13-15
even though I was formerly a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent aggressor. Yet I was shown mercy because I acted ignorantly in unbelief; and the grace of our Lord was more than abundant, with the faith and love which are found in Christ Jesus. It is a trustworthy statement, deserving full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, among whom I am foremost of all.

God Uses People with a Past.

Joshua 2:4-7
But the woman had taken the two men and hidden them, and she said, “Yes, the men came to me, but I did not know where they were from. It came about when it was time to shut the gate at dark, that the men went out; I do not know where the men went. Pursue them quickly, for you will overtake them.” But she had brought them up to the roof and hidden them in the stalks of flax which she had laid in order on the roof. So the men pursued them on the road to the Jordan to the fords; and as soon as those who were pursuing them had gone out, they shut the gate.

Joshua 2:12-14
Now therefore, please swear to me by the LORD, since I have dealt kindly with you, that you also will deal kindly with my father’s household, and give me a pledge of truth, and spare my father and my mother and my brothers and my sisters, with all who belong to them, and deliver our lives from death.” So the men said to her, “Our life for yours if you do not tell this business of ours; and it shall come about when the LORD gives us the land that we will deal kindly and faithfully with you.”

Joshua 2:21
She said, “According to your words, so be it.” So she sent them away, and they departed; and she tied the scarlet cord in the window.

God Redefines People with a Past.

Joshua 6:25
However, Rahab the harlot and her father’s household and all she had, Joshua spared; and she has lived in the midst of Israel to this day, for she hid the messengers whom Joshua sent to spy out Jericho.

Hebrews 11:31
By faith Rahab the harlot did not perish along with those who were disobedient, after she had welcomed the spies in peace.

Bottom Line

Your Present Hope is not based on Your Past Behavior, but on God’s Grace.

Notes:

 

Small Group Questions:

  1. Read Joshua 2:1, whenever Rahab is mentioned in scripture she also keeps the designation of harlot. Why do you think that is so?  Do we also carry along some of our former selves before we surrendered to Christ?  Is this a “bad” thing?
  2. Read Joshua 2: 2-7, Rahab tells a lie here to protect the Israelite spies. Do you think it’s ok to lie to achieve a greater good? Did Rahab have any other options? Can you think of some scriptures that give God’s point of view?
  3. Read Joshua 2:8-11, how do you think the people in Jericho heard all these things regarding the Israelites? Do you think this was part of God’s plan for the Israelites to take over the land? Does Rahab seem to know God’s plan?
  4. Read Joshua 12-21, Rahab seems to have a heart for her family and particularly asks for them to be saved. Do you think she may have had a tough time convincing them to come over to her house once the city would be under attack? Why do you think God often uses people with a checkered past to do his will? Why would God honor her to include her in the lineage of Jesus? Once God gives us a task to do is there any way we can fail at it?
  5. Has there been anything God has put on your heart to do but you’ve found it hard to carry out? Is there something he’s asking you to do now?

Please continue to pray for the Church and that God will put in on people’s hearts to want to know Him.