THE GREAT FAITH OF rahab
Joshua 2:1–21, 6:15–25; Hebrews 11:31; James 2:24–26
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
Rahab was a temple prostitute and an innkeeper. But when she heard the report of how God dried up the Red Sea, she declared to the Hebrew spies, “The Lord your God, he is God in the heavens above and on the earth beneath.” She took a great risk and hid the spies. If the king had discovered the spies in her home, it would have cost her life and the life of her family. But she trusted God even at the risk of losing everything.
Charles Blondin (1824–1897) was one of the greatest circus acrobats of all time. He performed many dangerous feats during his career, but the most outstanding were his exhibitions on an 1,100-foot-long tightrope stretched 160 feet above Niagara Falls. He crossed the Falls several times, always with different theatrical variations: blindfolded, on stilts, pushing a wheelbarrow. Once, he even sat on the tightrope and cooked an omelet.
But his first crossing stands out above all the others. After successfully crossing Niagara, Blondin asked the gathered crowd, “Who believes I can cross back over the Falls?” The crowd roared as one, “We believe!” “Then who,” Blondin said, “is willing to get on my back while I cross?” The crowd was silent. Finally, one brave man stepped out of the crowd and said, “I will.” He climbed on Blondin’s shoulders, and they both walked successfully over Niagara Falls.
The crowd at Niagara Falls mentally assented to Blondin’s ability to cross, but the brave man who climbed on his shoulders believed from his heart.
Great faith trusts God even at the risk of losing everything.
God uses situations to reveal to us that what we thought was faith was only mental assent. What situations have you been in last year that showed you how much mental assent you had? What did God teach you through those situations? What does it mean to respond in true Bible faith and not with mere mental assent?
People of faith make quality decisions based on the Word of God. What situation are you facing right now that requires a quality decision? What are the obstacles hindering you from making the decision, and how will you overcome them?
Confession of Faith
Adapted from Numbers 6:24–26; Psalms 5:12; Ezra 7:28; Luke 1:28, 2:52; Mark 11:22–23; James 1:17; Luke 12:32; Psalms 23:6.
The Lord blesses me, and keeps me; the Lord makes his face shine on me and he is gracious to me. The Lord lifts up his countenance upon me, and gives me peace.
He blesses the righteous and surrounds me with favor like a shield. I take courage, for the hand of the Lord my God is on me. The Lord is with me. I keep increasing in wisdom and stature and in favor with God and man.
I have faith in God. I speak to mountains and I do not doubt in my heart, but believe that what I say is going to happen, and it shall be.
Every good thing and every perfect gift is coming to me from the father of lights. I am not afraid for my father has gladly chosen to give me the kingdom. Surely goodness and lovingkindness will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. Ephesians 2:8–9
“The doer is he who from the heart embraces God's word and testifies by his life that he really believes, according to the saying of Christ, ‘Blessed are they who hear God's word and keep it.’”
—John Calvin, French Theologian and Protestant Reformer