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Rahab Facts for 9-13 Year Olds

Categories: Joshua

  • Rahab’s story is found in Joshua.
  • Her name means something like “spacious or broad.”
  • After 40 years of wandering through the wilderness, the people of Israel are about to cross a flooded river and start the settlement process.
  • The city of Jericho stands at a strategic point for passing over into the new land.
  • Like all ancient cities, it is enclosed by thick walls intended to keep out enemies.
  • Scholars think the walls are made of two parallel walls with occasional perpendicular walls.
  • People could live within these rooms, and Rahab and her family do so.
  • Rahab’s family may have had an inn, but she probably has her own home.
  • Scholars believe Rahab entertains travelers whenever they come her way.
  • She is probably up on all the local gossip, which also brings news from the outside.
  • Meanwhile, Joshua sends two spies into the city to scope out the situation.
  • The spies find their way to Rahab’s house in the wall and spend the night.
  • Someone sees them and informs the King of Jericho.
  • The king sends orders to Rahab: “Bring out the men who have come to you, who entered your house, for they have come only to search out the whole land.”
  • Rahab hides the men at great risk to herself. She is committing treason against her community.
  • When the officers come, Rahab admits that they were there, but claims she doesn’t know where they are from.
  • She tells the officers that when it became dark, the men left.
  • She suggests that they try to follow them quickly because they already have a head start.
  • None of that is true, though, for she has hidden them up on the roof under the drying stalks of flax that she uses to make linen.
  • The officers run out, and as soon as they leave the city, the gates are closed.
  • Before the men fall asleep, Rahab says to them, “I know that the Lord has given you the land.”
  • People are terrified of you. We have heard how the Lord dried up the land of the Red Sea so you could escape from Egypt.
  • “Your God is indeed God in heaven above and on earth below.”
  • Then Rahab makes a deal with them.
  • Since she has been kind to them, she asks them to swear that they will in turn treat her and her family with the same kindness.
  • The men reply: “Our life for yours! If you do not tell this business of ours, then we will deal kindly and faithfully with you when the Lord gives us the land.”
  • She then lets them down by a rope through the window, going outside the wall.
  • She tells them to go hide in the hill country for three days.
  • The men tell her to mark her family’s house by tying a crimson cord out the window.
  • After the men leave, she ties the crimson cord in the window.
  • When Jericho falls, the spies bring Rahab and her family out.
  • The genealogy in Matthew claims she is the wife of Salmon, the father of Boaz. Boaz becomes the great grandfather to King David.
  • Some scholars claim Salmon is one of the spies.
  • Rahab is one of four women mentioned in Matthew’s genealogy of Jesus. The other three are Tamar, Ruth, and Bathsheba.
  • By including these four women in Christ’s genealogy, Matthew is making the claim that God’s great plan of salvation includes Gentiles, even unrighteous Gentiles.
  • In the New Testament, Rahab is praised for her faith and her works. (See Hebrews 11:31; James 2:25)