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Rahab makes a deal with two enemy spies and the Israelite nation crosses the Jordan River.

This Week’s Story relives American history and the Bible through brief inspiring stories presented on mp3 audio recordings and text for reading.

Joshua: Covert Operators,
part three

Two of my favorite covert operators are Rahab and Harriet Tubman. They would have been great partners in danger! Their quick-thinking actions placed them both into history. A fascinating fact is that Jesus Christ was a descendant of Rahab, causing him to be of Canaanite and Israelite lineage. Harriet Tubman, an African-American, continues to inspire many American history lessons.

On nineteen trips Harriet slipped slaves past slave catchers and onward to freedom in the 1800’s in the United States. About three thousand years earlier Rahab hid two spies, enemies of her country, and provided a cover story that kept their location and escape route secret.

Rahab was desperate to save the lives of her family and herself. She was convinced that the Israelite military would conquer her city, Jericho. She declared to the spies, “The Lord your God is the supreme God of the heavens above and the earth below. I know how He made a dry path for you through the Red Sea when you left Egypt.”

She offered a deal to the spies. “I have hidden you, kept you safe when the King sent his men to my house to capture you. Swear to me by the Lord that you will let me live, and all my family, when your military forces enter Jericho.”

The Israelite spies agreed. “We guarantee your safety, if you do not betray us.”

Rahab’s house was built into the wall around Jericho. She instructed the spies, “Escape to the hill country. Hide there for three days. Then the King’s searchers will come back to the city and you can go to your people.”

Before she lowered the spies by rope to the ground outside her window, they told her, “Your safety is sure if you leave this scarlet rope hanging from your window. When the attack comes, be sure your family and relatives are inside the house. If they go into the street, they will be killed.”

“I accept your terms,” Rahab replied.

The spies went to the hill country and stayed there three days. Then they crossed the Jordan River and reported to Joshua, leader of the Israelite nation. The conclusion was: “The Lord will give us the land. The people are terrified of us.”

The next morning Joshua and all the Israelites went to the Jordan River and camped for three days. Their tribal leaders told the people, “When you see the priests carrying the Ark of the Covenant, follow them. They will guide you. Stay about half a mile behind them.”

The Lord told Joshua, “Today I will begin to make you great in the eyes of all your people. They will know that I am with you, just as I was with Moses. Tell the priests that when they reach the river they are to take a few steps into the water and then stop.”

Joshua told the Israelites, “Today you will know that God is among you.”

When the people were ready to cross the Jordan River with the priests ahead of them, the river was overflowing its banks. As soon as the feet of the priests touched the water, the water began piling up at a town upstream. The water below flowed on to the Dead Sea.

This is Barbara Steiner with a story of intrigue and rescue. You can read or hear part four soon. Enjoy visiting thisweeksstory.com.

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