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August 5 – The profession of a prostitute – Part 1

“So [the spies] went, and came to the house of a harlot named Rahab, and lodged there.” – Joshua 2:1

Scripture reading: Joshua 2:1-7

The late James Montgomery Boice in his commentary on Joshua states, “It is interesting that the first character described for us in this great book of Joshua – other than Joshua himself – is this woman Rahab, and that the first real historical account told us is her account.” This is interesting and important because most Christians would say that Joshua is basically about wars and battles. Even conservative theologians would describe the book as God’s divine judgment against human sin, using the nation of Israel to punish whole people groups because of their rebellion against the LORD.

Now it is true that war and judgment play a major role in this book. Yet we must not miss the fact that the Book of Joshua essentially begins, as Boice puts it, with “a story of God’s mercy rather than of His wrath.” Think about that. Divine mercy and grace begin this account, not divine wrath and judgment. This must be the presupposition that guides us as we read through this historical record; namely, that yes, our God is holy and just and He will punish sin, but God is also merciful and gracious, long-suffering and filled with lovingkindness. And in this we find our hope!

God’s grace is seen today in the blood-stained cross of Calvary. There perfect and full propitiation occurred. Through the instrument of faith, our sin is imputed to Christ and Jesus’ perfect righteousness is imputed to us. The “great exchange.” Trust in Christ and find your hope in Him.

Suggestions for prayer

Thank God for His mercy and grace. Thank Him that He did not leave you in your sin as you deserved, but that He sent His only Begotten Son “to be sin for us, so that we might become the righteousness of God.” (2 Corinthians 5:21).

This daily devotional is available in a print edition you can buy at Nearer to God Devotional. Rev. Ed Marcusse is the pastor of the Oak Glen United Reformed Church of Lansing, Illinois.

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