Last night I spoke on how Jesus saved the thief. Tonight I shall speak on how Jesus saved a bad woman. Now the Old Testament foreshadows the New Testament. Therefore the O.T. tells of Christ's coming to save sinners.
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 is a type of the world to be destroyed. This glittering Shanghai will be destroyed one day. According to God's Word in the Bible, this world will be destroyed. How dangerous it is to live in this world. We should seek to be saved when the world perishes.
Now Joshua's army is advancing, but not without sending two spies to find out the situation in the city, to see if any inside desired salvation. These two spies are a type of Christ. Who received them? No one but a woman of sin named Rahab. These two men's countenance was different from others. Christians are different in their looks from the people of the world.
Once on a train to Peking, I took a tour of the whole train from the first coach to the last. I saw the passengers were engrossed either in smoking or reading newspapers. Everyone looked like everyone. I came to the end coach. There only did I find a friend, seated serenely by himself. I asked him, "Friend, are you a Christian?" He replied, "Praise the Lord!"
These two spies would have been killed save for Rahab's hospitality. The King of Jericho knew about them and was on their track. Good people are sought after by the world to be done away with. The world cannot accept the good. Christ came into the world surely to be killed, Death, not life. But the bad are worshipped!
Vs 2, 3 "And it was told the king of Jericho, saying, Behold, there came men in hither tonight of the children of Israel to search out the country. And the king of Jericho sent unto Rahab, saying, bring forth the men that are come to thee, which are entered into thine house: for they be come to search out all the country." None in the city would receive the Lord, except a sinner. Should the Lord come today, who would receive Him? They want Rahab to hand out the two men. The Devil doesn't want money. He wants Jesus. If you don't give up Jesus, I'll kill you. Rahab refused to give up the two spies, for they were her life --- when a man has Jesus, he has life, no Jesus, no life.
Vs 4-7 "And the woman took the two men, and hid them, and said thus, There came men unto me, but I wist not whence they were: And it came to pass about the time of shutting of the gate; when it was dark, that the men went out: whither the men went I wot not: pursue after them quickly; for ye shall overtake them. But she had brought them up to the roof of the house, and hid them with the stalks of flax, which she had laid in order upon the roof. And the men pursued after them the way to Jordan unto the fords: and as soon as they which pursued after them were gone out, they shut the gate. This harlot hid the two spies in the roof but told them they were gone, that they might run after them. The Devil wants to catch Jesus, but this harlot would not hand over the two men. She'd rather die.
When I was in Rangoon, a woman sold all her goods to travel to the meetings. On the other hand there was a sister in Burma who for the love of money was willing to become a rich man's concubine. She avoided everyone of my meetings. After her marriage she thought coming to the meetings would not do any harm. Ah! She was arrested by God. The Holy Spirit worked mightily in her heart. She repented. She became a preacher. In order to come to the Bible Conference at Amoy last summer, she sold all she had. This harlot gave up everything, but not the Lord.
Vs 8 "And before they were laid down, she came up unto them upon the roof". This harlot begged to be saved. So she did not let them sleep-not to let Jesus sleep. Many today would rather let Jesus sleep day and night. She begged to be saved with her whole family when the city was destroyed.
Vs 9-11 "And she said unto the men. I know that the Lord hath given you the land, and that your terror is fallen upon us, and that all the inhabitants of the land faint because of you. For we have heard how the Lord dried up the water of the Red Sea for you, when ye came out of Egypt; and what ye did unto the two kings of the Amorites, that were on the other side Jordan, Sihon and Og whom ye utterly destroyed. And as soon as we had heard these things, our hearts did melt, neither did there remain any more courage in any man, because of you: for the Lord your God, he is God in heaven above, and in earth beneath." This sister said to them, "We know this city will be destroyed. Our hearts are melted." Many take salvation lightly.
There's a student of a certain university in Shanghai. He said to me, "I study to become an officer, and to get rich. When die, I'm finished. But this harlot asks not for anything, not fame nor the world, but only salvation. Beloved, if you die tonight where will you go? Death does not end all. According to the Bible, there is judgment after death. Are you really saved? The harlot knew the doom coming upon the city. She wanted to escape this doom.
Vs 12 "Now therefore, I pray you, swear unto me by the Lord, since I have shewed you kindness, that ye will also shew kindness unto my father's house, and give me a true token". Give me a token, a sure token. This sister did not take things lightly. She wanted a sure token. Many there are who are Church members for years. Who know only their pastor, but not whether they are saved. If you have no token of your salvation, don't eat! A saved person has proof. Many do not know they need to ask for a sure proof. Other things can be lightly taken, not salvation. Beloved, you have believed for years. Do you have proof of your salvation? Thank the Lord, Rahab not only had proof, she had great faith.
Vs 13 "And that ye will save alive my father, and my mother, and my brethren, and my sisters, and all that they have, and deliver our lives from death." Not only me but my parents, brothers, sisters, etc. To be saved merely is not enough. The whole family! Beloved, can you sleep well when your family members are unsaved. Do you love souls? If not, maybe you're not saved yourself. Who of what family is not saved today? This Rahab's heart had great faith. Not only she had love, she desired to be saved.
I had no time to go to eastern Taiwan to preach. So they sent 50 eastern Taiwan delegates to pray with me for an hour. Their prayer was that eastern Taiwan might be saved. Rahab prayed for the whole family.
Vs 14 "And the men answered her, Our life for yours, if ye utter not this our business. And it shall be, when the Lord hath given us the land, that we will deal kindly and truly with thee." That evening Jesus took the cup and gave to the disciples. To Peter He said. "This blood is my covenant with you." Jesus gave His life as guarantee. His death on the cross confirmed the covenant. It is our token.
Vs 15 "Then she let them down by a cord through the window: for her house was upon the town wall, and she dwelt upon the wall. The two were let down by a scarlet rope.
Vs 16-18 After we are gone you shall hang down a scarlet rope as a sign. Could Jesus die peacefully in bed? No He had to hide three days! Jesus was buried in the tomb three days. Both O.T. and N.T. stand together. We have only one way out of this world of destruction, Jesus Christ who died and rose again from the dead after three days. To remember the scarlet rope is equivalent to remembering the Lord's precious blood and His crucifixion. So, beloved, we are saved by trusting in Jesus' precious blood as the harlot trusted in the scarlet rope to sure salvation. Although the whole city was destroyed you and your family in this house with the scarlet rope shall never be lost.
Vs 19-21 "And it shall be, that whosoever shall go out of the doors of thy house into the street, his blood shall be upon his head, and we will be guiltless: and whosoever shall be with thee in the house, his blood shall be on our head, if any hand be upon him. And if thou utter this our business, then we will be quit of thine oath which thou hast made us to swear. And she said. According unto your words, so be it. And she sent them away, and they departed: and she bound the scarlet line in the window." After the two men had gone, this sister immediately hung out the scarlet rope, a token of her salvation. Henceforth neither had she the time to sin. She was engrossed in saving her brothers to come into her family, where the scarlet rope was --- to be saved, the whole family.
These two spies went the way of the cross. Apart from Jesus there is no salvation. Many churches do not preach Jesus blood. How can they save? The harlot had nothing good but she labored in remembrance of Jesus till the whole city was destroyed. When Jesus comes again Rahab and her whole family will be caught up.
Jericho was destroyed while Rahab and family were saved. Whoever desiring to be saved must trust in Jesus' blood, remembering His death and his coming again.
In Nanyang there was a rich man's son who had much wealth himself. He got married and led a comfortable life. He was a lawyer. He owned a new car. Every week he came to listen to the Word. Both he and wife were converted. Now they are laboring for Christ in a little village, full of power, leading many to Christ.
SI Moderator - Greg Gordon