Sermon #1317 Miscellaneous Notes
Title: The House On The Wall
That Could Not Fall
Text: Joshua 6:20-25
Reading: Joshua 2:1-21
Subject: Rahab the Harlot
Date: Sunday Morning - Mach 8, 1998
Tape # U-57
When the Lord God sent Joshua and the children of Israel across the Jordan river and into the land of Canaan to take possession of the land, the first order of business was to destroy the city of Jericho. Jericho was one of the largest, most prosperous, and most thoroughly fortified cities in the land. But the city was cursed of God and marked for destruction. The sentence of death had been passed upon it forty years earlier (Ex. 23:27-28).
Though the inhabitants of Jericho prospered in the world, though they worked and played, labored by day and partied by night, though they filled their lives with every amusement, comfort, and pleasure they could find, though they were utterly ignorant of it, they were a people cursed of God, a people whose numbered days were up, and a people about to be forever damned! I cannot help wondering who in this assembly those words describe! They were as sure for hell as if they were already there when Joshua and the children of Israel crossed over the river Jordan; but they were oblivious to the fact of it!
The Scriptures tell us that the children of Israel marched around Jericho, carrying the ark of the covenant everyday for seven days. On the seventh day, they marched around the city seven times, blew their trumpets and shouted. When they did, the walls of Jericho came tumbling down and fell flat to the ground. The whole city was completely destroyed at once, except for one house. There was one small section of the wall that did not fall because there was a house on that section of the wall that could not fall. I want to talk to you about that house. The title of my message is THE HOUSE ON THE WALL THAT COULD NOT FALL. Read about it with me in Joshua 6:20-25.
Proposition: Though all of Jericho was destroyed under the wrath of God, Rahab and her father’s house were saved, the house of the town’s most notorious harlot could not fall.
When I read that, being the kind of curious, inquisitive person I am, I want to know why? Why was this one house left standing, while all the other houses were destroyed? Why, when the entire wall surrounding the city collapsed under the weight of God’s wrath, was this harlot’s house left standing?
Divisions: Give me your attention, and I will show you five reasons why this one house upon the wall could not fall.
1. Rahab was the object of God’s sovereign, electing love.
2. Rahab’s house was under the blood.
3. Rahab believed God.
4. Rahab had the promise of God for her security and the security of her house.
5. Rahab stayed in the house.
I. Rahab was the object of God’s sovereign, electing love.
What a picture this woman is of God’s sovereign mercy and grace in Christ to sinners like us! Rahab was a sinner by birth, and a notorious sinner by choice and practice. Religious moralists and legalists try their best to make us believe that the word “harlot” simply means that Rahab was an innkeeper. But the kind of inn Rahab kept was a brothel. The only women in those times and countries who kept public houses and inns were prostitutes.
I do not understand why people have so much trouble with that. The Lord Jesus Christ came into this world to save sinners., real sinners.
Mercy is for the miserable. Grace is for the guilty. Redemption is for the ruined. Righteousness is for the rotten. Rahab was a cursed woman, in a cursed profession, dwelling in a cursed city, from a cursed race (An Amorite); yet she obtained mercy.
Illustration: Barnard and the Pastor on Visitation
Why did this cursed, woman obtain mercy? It was not because of anything in her, or anything done by her, but because the Lord loved her and chose her as the object of his grace. It is true, that she and her house were saved because she received the spies, hid them, and sent them out another way. But that was an act of faith, faith which God gave her, not to get mercy, but because she had obtained mercy.
Note: Faith is not the product of natural religion, logic, or human reason. Faith is the gift of God (Eph. 2:8-9). Faith s the fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22-23). Faith is the operation of God in the souls of chosen, redeemed, called sinners (Col. 2:12).
It was not by accident that the spies stumbled into Rahab’s house when they came in to spy out the land. They came to Rahab’s house because God had purposed it from eternity.
If you will read again her conversation with the spies in chapter two, you will see how this harlot’s experience of grace is described (Jos. 2:8-19).
A. By some means or another, this woman heard the gospel of God’s salvation.
B. Rahab’s heart withered before the august, sovereign majesty of the one true and living God.
The other inhabitants of the land withered in the dread and fear of God’s wrath and power; but Rahab’s heart withered in repentance and faith, as is evident from verse nine. Here we see that when she heard the report of God’s wondrous works…
C. Rahab believed God.
II. Rahab’s house was under the blood.
Not only was Rahab an object of God’s amazing, free, and sovereign grace in Christ, her house could not fall under the wrath of God because it was under the refuge and protection of the precious blood of Christ. That is what was symbolized by the scarlet cord hanging from her window (2:18-21).
This scarlet cord which Rahab dropped from her window was, like the blood of Abel’s lamb, like the blood of the passover lamb upon the houses of the Israelites, like the blood of sin-offering in the tabernacle, a picture and type of the precious blood of Christ.
Let others mock and deride us as being outdated in our religion, if they must, but in this house of worship the precious, sin-atoning, redeeming blood of the Lord Jesus Christ is not only prominent, it is everything! God helping us, that is the way it will remain! How I thank God for the blood! I never tire of hearing about it. I never get tired of singing about it. And I never grow weary of preaching it.
A. It is by the blood that we are redeemed.
B. It is by the blood that we have forgiveness.
C. It is the precious blood of Christ that gives us access to and acceptance with the Lord our God.
D. It is the blood of Christ, sprinkled upon our hearts that gives us the blessed peace and full assurance of faith that under it we are safe and secure from the avenging wrath and justice of God.
The Lord our God declares, “When I see the blood, I will pass over you!” Rahab believed him. Do you? When Joshua saw the scarlet blood hanging in her window, when he saw the blood upon her house, “Joshua saved Rahab the harlot alive”. This one house on the wall could not fall because it was protected by grace. It could not fall because it was protected by blood. It could not fall because it was protected by faith.
III. Rahab believed God.
Rahab is held up before us in faith’s hall of fame, in Hebrews chapter eleven, along side Abraham, Moses, and Joshua, as an eminent example of faith (v. 31). James uses her, side by side with Abraham, as an example of what it means to prove our faith by our works.
Hers was not an empty, unfruitful, meaningless profession of faith. Oh no, Rahab believed God and proved that she did by her works of obedience. Let me remind you of how this woman proved her faith by he obedience.
A. She believed the report she heard of God’s salvation (2:9-10).
B. Rahab received, cared for, and protected God’s messengers in her home, at the risk of her own life.
C. Believing God, she also sought mercy for her household (2:12-13).
D. Rahab hung everything upon the blood of the covenant represented in that cord hanging from her window.
E. Rahab the harlot so thoroughly believed God that she brought all her family into her house and thus into the pail of grace!
1. This old harlot, who had been the shame of her family, was made in the hands of God the primary instrument and means of eternal salvation to her family!
2. Rahab the harlot, believing God, obtained a place in the family tree of the incarnate Son of God, the Lord Jesus Christ (Matt. 1:1-5).
Note: In the genealogy of Christ only four women are mentioned. All four of them have a specific taint upon them. Tamar was guilty of incest. Rahab was a harlot. Ruth was a cursed, unclean Moabitess. Bathsheba was an adulteress. Thus, even in his genealogy and birth, our Savior associated himself with sinners! The Son of God came to save sinners.
The house on the wall that could not fall could not fall because it was protected by grace, protected by blood, protected by faith, and protected by the promise of God.
IV. Rahab had the promise of God for her security and the security of her house.
If you read chapter two again (vv. 12-21), you will see that the messengers of God made a solemn promise to Rahab. They said, You go get your family, bring them into your house, bind this scarlet cord to the window, and stay in the house. And when the Lord gives us this city, “We will deal kindly and truly with thee”.
Child of God, this is our security, too. We have the promise of God. This is what he has promised.
I want you to see one more thing. The house on the wall that could not fall could not fall because…
V. Rahab stayed in the house.
God’s faithful messengers told her that if she went out of the house, she would perish with all the rest of Jericho. There was no safety in any house in the city except in that house protected by the ever-abiding scarlet cord, the house under the ever-abiding protection of the blood. Just as the Israelites were to stay in their houses while God judged Egypt, so Rahab and her family had to stay in her house while God judged Jericho. Even so, you and I must cling to Christ alone. Abiding in him, we are safe from the wrath of God. But if you go out of this house, you will perish without mercy.
Under the blood of Jesus,
Safe in the Shepherd’s fold,
Under the blood of Jesus,
Safe while the ages roll,
Safe, though the world may crumble,
Safe, though the stars grow dim,
Under the blood of Jesus -
I am secure in Him!