Monday, June 27, 2011

What's in a name

Do you ever wonder why some parents give certain names to their children. I mean the ones that make you say "What in the world could they have been thinking." Over the years I have heard some doosies. Some I cannot even pronounce. There are some that you never hear. Or least Ive never heard them. Jezebel is one. Surely no one would go there. But then again I did meet Gomorrah one night. Yep, I sure did.
Come to think of it I never heard of Rahab either. But why not? If you knew her character you might wonder as well.
Rahab lived in the town of Jericho. She was a woman of the night in a culture of darkness. A wicked town with wicked people. And nobody cared because everybody was involved.
But change was in the air. God's people the Israelites were just across the Jordan river. The people of Jericho were afraid. They had heard stories how God had delivered His people from mighty Egypt and from other enemies on their way home. And Jericho was now in the cross hairs.
One evening two men came to the city. They were strangers and wound up in Rahab's house. They were Israelite spies sent to search out the land. The king sent his men to look for them but Rahab knew she had one chance to save herself and her family. She hid the spies and told the king that the men had already fled the city.
She told the spies how her people dreaded them. She herself knew that destruction awaited the city and all that were in it. When the men finally did escape she was told to put a scarlet line in her window so when the city fell she and all that were in her house would be spared.
And that is exactly what happened. The city was overrun and every person in the city was put to the sword. Everyone except for those found in one house. That was the house with the scarlet line.
It was not that she was better than her neighbors. She wasn't. It was not that she went to church or gave to missions or sang in the choir. She didn't.
Just how did she escape? She did all she could have done. She did all she should have done. She believed. That was all. She trusted that the One who was about to destroy would also have mercy on those who would believe.
My friend, Christ waits to show you mercy as well. If you will do what Rahab did. She believed. Will you place your trust where God has placed your sin? On the Lord Jesus Christ. If you will you will be saved.
Oh and about her name. Well it seems she was quite famous from then on. She is spoken of in James and Hebrews as being a person of great faith. In the book of Matthew we find her as a great grandmother of the Lord Jesus Himself. That is a pretty good name after all.  

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