Joshua Sends Spies to Jericho

Scripture Passage: 
Joshua 2:1-24

INTRODUCTION: The story of Rahab gives a wonderful type and illustration of salvation. Not only is she a Gentile and a woman, but she is also a despised harlot (prostitute). The token of her deliverance is a scarlet thread; a beautiful picture of the blood of Jesus Christ. She is taken from these depths and raised to the greatest of heights by being included in the line of Christ and recorded in the chapter of faith (Hebrews 11). If God could save Rahab, He can certainly save you and those you know.

  1. RAHAB PROTECTS THE SPIES (Joshua 2:1-7)
    1. Joshua Sends the Spies to Jericho (Joshua 2:1).
      1. Their mission
        1. Sent out of Shittim
        2. Sent to spy secretly
        3. Sent to spy the land of Jericho
        4. Note: The land was also supposed to be the focus of the search under the authority of Moses (Numbers 13:18-20).
      2. Their refuge – found in the house of an harlot
    2. The King of Jericho Seeks the Spies (Joshua 2:2-3).
      1. The king hears news of the arrival of spies (Joshua 2:2).
      2. The king sends word unto Rahab to turn the spies over to him (Joshua 2:3).
    3. Rahab Hides the Spies on Her Roof (Joshua 2:4-6).
      1. Rahab gives a false report concerning the spies (Joshua 2:4-5).
        1. Men came unto her, but she did not know where they were (Joshua 2:4).
        2. The men went out at dark, and if they pursued the men quickly, they could overtake them (Joshua 2:5).
      2. Rahab hid the spies on the roof of her house (Joshua 2:6).
        1. She hid them with the stalks of flax which she had laid in order upon the roof.
        2. Some have suggested the stalks of flax on the roof of her house indicate that she had changed her life and was no longer an harlot (Proverbs 31:13).
        3. Even though there was an obvious heart toward the spies, this is probably not true, because she is still called an harlot in the passage (Joshua 2:1).
    4. The Men of Jericho Pursue the Spies (Joshua 2:7).
      1. The men pursued them toward the direction of the Jordan.
      2. As soon as the pursuers were out of the city, the gate was closed.
  2. RAHAB BARTERS FOR HER LIFE (Joshua 2:8-14)
    1. She Tells the Spies of Terror in the Land (Joshua 2:8-11).
      1. Rahab returns to the spies (Joshua 2:8).
      2. Rahab informs the spies of her knowledge concerning the downfall of Jericho (Joshua 2:9).
      3. Rahab tells the spies of her knowledge of their great victories (Joshua 2:10).
        1. The drying of the Red sea
        2. The victory over Sihon and Og
      4. Rahab tells the spies of the condition of the people of Canaan (Joshua 2:11).
        1. Their hearts melted at the news.
        2. They lost all courage.
        3. They fear the God of Israel.
          1. He is God in heaven above.
          2. He is God in the earth beneath.
        4. Note: Notice how this is completely opposite of what the children of Israel thought of the enemy when they spied the land before (Numbers 13: 26-33).
    2. She Seeks of the Spies a Token of Deliverance (Joshua 2:12-13; Psalm 86:17).
      1. Rahab seeks mercy (Joshua 2:12).
      2. Rahab seeks the life of her family (Joshua 2:13).
        1. Her father
        2. Her mother
        3. Her brothers and their family
        4. Her sisters and their family
    3. The Spies Agree To Spare Her and Her Family (Joshua 2:14).
      1. The offer of the spies – Their life for hers
      2. The condition of the offer – If she utters not their business
  3. RAHAB SENDS THE SPIES ON THEIR WAY (Joshua 2:15-21)
    1. She Helps the Spies Escape (Joshua 2:15-16).
      1. The escape of the spies (Joshua 2:15)
        1. They escape through a window.
        2. She lets them down by a cord.
      2. The location of Rahab’s house (Joshua 2:15)
        1. Her house was upon the town wall.
        2. This seems to be a common location for the home of a harlot (Proverbs 9:13-18).
      3. The instructions for escape (Joshua 2:16)
        1. Flee to the mountain.
        2. Hide for three days.
        3. Afterward they could go their way.
    2. She is Given the Token of the Scarlet Thread (Joshua 2:17-18).
      1. The men stress their innocence if their instructions are not followed (Joshua 2:17).
      2. The men give Rahab a scarlet thread to identify her home (Joshua 2:18).
    3. The Spies Give the Condition of the Oath (Joshua 2:19-21).
      1. Whosoever goes out of the doors of the house does so at his own risk (Joshua 2:19).
      2. Whosoever remains in the house is safe from the wrath (Joshua 2:19).
      3. If Rahab tells of the conquest, then the spies will be free of any responsibility (Joshua 2:20).
      4. Rahab acts quickly to obey the spies (Joshua 2:21).
  4. THE SPIES RETURN TO JOSHUA (Joshua 2:22-24)
    1. They Escape from Their Pursuers (Joshua 2:22).
      1. The spies followed the instructions of Rahab.
      2. The spies escape in safety.
    2. They Bring Their Report to Joshua (Joshua 2:23-24).
      1. The spies return (Joshua 2:23).
      2. Their report is that of victory (Joshua 2:24).
      3. Notice the contrast between the report of the first spies and the report of these spies (Numbers 13:26-33).

CONCLUSION: Have you received God’s deliverance from destruction? In other words, are you saved? If you are saved, are you daily thankful for what God has done for you? What a wondrous salvation God hath wrought!

David Reagan and Andrew Ray

Daily Proverb

Proverbs 22:8

He that soweth iniquity shall reap vanity: and the rod of his anger shall fail.