Hebrews 11:31 – By faith the prostitute Rahab, because she welcomed the spies, was not killed with those who were disobedient. (NIV)
We had been talking about forgiveness at our Bible Study, when one lady offered the following thought: "I know God can forgive me, but it's so hard to forgive myself for mistakes I've made." I had known her for some time, and had witnessed a wonderful change in her life, but her statement was referring to a time in her life, before she met Jesus, when she had committed adultery.
Later, I was able to share with her a story from the Bible, the famous spy story in the second chapter of Joshua. Here we are told how two of Joshua's spies entered a foreign land, and found themselves seeking shelter in Rahab's house. Before these spies ever arrived at her home, Rahab had heard reports about the parting of the Red Sea, and the defeat of the two Amorite kings.
As she listened to the stories the spies were sharing, Rahab became convinced that their God was the one true God. Before the spies settled for the night, she pleaded for salvation for herself and her family. The spies promised their safety if she hung a scarlet cord from her window.
Sometimes we forget how thoroughly God cleans up a life. In Matthew 1:5 we read how Rahab, a prostitute, is listed in the ancestry of Jesus. When we pray for God's forgiveness, there is no halfway measure. We are forgiven completely.
Prayer: Thank You, Jesus, for dying in our place, for becoming a living sacrifice for our sin. Remind us that when You clean up a life, You do it so thoroughly that we are saved from the penalty of our disobedience to You. Amen.