Lady Marmalade: Rahab, the Spirit of the Coming Messiah

Pastor Bresean Jenkins, July 30, 2017
Part of the Walking With Women in Scripture series, preached at a Sunday Morning service

Pause, and name five women in the Bible. Are they main characters, antagonists, or just a part of a short antidote?

Notably, there are 3100 proper names mentioned in Scripture, and only 170 are women. This isn’t surprising as early biblical cultures were patriarchal. In addition, rabbis, our early Scripture scholars, were all men. But as we know well, simply because someone does not have societal authority does not mean that they lack power to change their communities for good and communicate the love of God.

Still, we have to be intentional about seeking out their stories. Though I’m embarrassed to admit it, I realized recently that in my 14 years of preaching, I’ve only preached directly on Esther and the Marys but never has Deborah, Tamar, Rahab, Hagar, Delilah or so many others been the central subject of my sermon. And yet, Christ repeatedly sought out their story and saw the giftedness of those who were overlooked by others. After all, such stories vividly remind us of how the power of the Holy Spirit can work in and among us!


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Joshua 2:9-14

and said to the men, “I know that the Lord has given you the land, and that the fear of you has fallen upon us, and that all the inhabitants of the land melt away before you. 10 For we have heard how the Lord dried up the water of the Red Sea before you when you came out of Egypt, and what you did to the two kings of the Amorites who were beyond the Jordan, to Sihon and Og, whom you devoted to destruction. 11 And as soon as we heard it, our hearts melted, and there was no spirit left in any man because of you, for the Lord your God, he is God in the heavens above and on the earth beneath. 12 Now then, please swear to me by the Lord that, as I have dealt kindly with you, you also will deal kindly with my father's house, and give me a sure sign 13 that you will save alive my father and mother, my brothers and sisters, and all who belong to them, and deliver our lives from death.” 14 And the men said to her, “Our life for yours even to death! If you do not tell this business of ours, then when the Lord gives us the land we will deal kindly and faithfully with you.” (ESV)

Hebrews 11:31

31 By faith Rahab the prostitute did not perish with those who were disobedient, because she had given a friendly welcome to the spies. (ESV)

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