Joshua 2:21: Rahab’s Covenant, Part 8

Verse 21:[1]  And she said, According unto your words, so be it.  And she sent them away, and they departed:  and she bound the scarlet line in the window.

[And sending them away,וַתְּשַׁלְּחֵם ]  And she had sent them away (Masius).  Sending away, that is, bidding them farewell (Lapide).  Thus שָׁלַח, to send away, is often taken (Masius).  For example, by saying, Go in peace (Lapide).

[She hung]  Question:  When?  Response 1:  Immediately (Masius, Lyra, Menochius, Bonfrerius, etc.).  Lest it be given over to forgetfulness, and so that the spies might see it before their departure (Lyra), and so that no place for error in such a matter of moment might be left (Menochius):  and also so that the sight of it might be a comfort to her:  moreover, she did not know when or how they were going to capture the city.  Objection 1:  But this would have stirred up the suspicion of the inhabitants of Jericho.  Response:  It is denied, because in other circumstances she was wont now and again to send forth cords from the window, for the drawing together of which perhaps that line above was of use.  Objection 2:  But then it would not have been said, she hung, but, she left hanging.  Response:  It is denied, because she positioned that cord differently (Bonfrerius).  Response 2:  Others maintain that this was done when the siege began (Kimchi in Masius).  For there was yet no danger, and she had allotted three days for their hiding (Bonfrerius).

And she bound the scarlet line in the window:  Forthwith, partly, that the spies might see it hung out before their departure, and so the better know it at some distance; partly, lest some accident might occasion a mistake or neglect about it; and partly, for her own comfort, it being pleasant and encouraging to her to have in her eye the pledge of her deliverance.

[1] Hebrew:  וַתֹּ֙אמֶר֙ כְּדִבְרֵיכֶ֣ם כֶּן־ה֔וּא וַֽתְּשַׁלְּחֵ֖ם וַיֵּלֵ֑כוּ וַתִּקְשֹׁ֛ר אֶת־תִּקְוַ֥ת הַשָּׁנִ֖י בַּחַלּֽוֹן׃

1 thought on “Joshua 2:21: Rahab’s Covenant, Part 8

  1. Lovely thoughts from Spurgeon’s “Morning and Evening”: “Rahab depended for her preservation upon the promise of the spies, whom she looked upon as the representatives of the God of Israel. Her faith was simple and firm, but it was very obedient. To tie the scarlet line in the window was a very trivial act in itself, but she dared not run the risk of omitting it. Come, my soul, is there not here a lesson for thee? Hast thou been attentive to all thy Lord’s will, even though some of his commands should seem nonessential? Hast thou observed in his own way the two ordinances of believers’ baptism and the Lord’s Supper? These neglected, argue much unloving disobedience in thy heart. Be henceforth in all things blameless, even to the tying of a thread, if that be matter of command.

    This act of Rahab sets forth a yet more solemn lesson. Have I implicitly trusted in the precious blood of Jesus? Have I tied the scarlet cord, as with a Gordian knot in my window, so that my trust can never be removed? Or can I look out towards the Dead Sea of my sins, or the Jerusalem of my hopes, without seeing the blood, and seeing all things in connection with its blessed power? The passerby can see a cord of so conspicuous a colour, if it hangs from the window: it will be well for me if my life makes the efficacy of the atonement conspicuous to all onlookers. What is there to be ashamed of? Let men or devils gaze if they will, the blood is my boast and my song. My soul, there is One who will see that scarlet line, even when from weakness of faith thou canst not see it thyself; Jehovah, the Avenger, will see it and pass over thee. Jericho’s walls fell flat: Rahab’s house was on the wall, and yet it stood unmoved; my nature is built into the wall of humanity, and yet when destruction smites the race, I shall be secure. My soul, tie the scarlet thread in the window afresh, and rest in peace.”

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