« הקודםהמשך »
Behold, when we come into the land, thou shalt bind this line of scarlet thread in the window which thou didst let us down by: and thou shalt bring tlıy father, and thy mother, and thy brethen, and all thy father's houshold home unto thee.
And it shall be, that whosoever shall go out of the doors of thy house into the street, his blood shall be upon his head, and we will be guiltless : and whosoever shall be with thee in the house, his blood shall be upon our head, if any hand be
him. And if thou utter this our business, then we will be quit of thine oath which thou hast made us to swear.
And she said, according to your words, so be it. And she sent them away, and they departed. And she bound the scarlet line in the window.
And they went and came unto the mountain, and abode there three days until the pursuers were return. ed. And the pursuers sought them throughout all the way, but found them not.
So the two men returned, and descended from the mountain, and passed over, and came to Joshua the son of Nun, and told him all things that befel them;
And they said unto Joshua, Truly the LORD hath delivered into our hands all the land; for even all the inhabitants of the country do faint because of us.
ANNOTATIONS AND REFLECTIONS. Jericho was a city just opposite to the place where the Israelites were to pass the river Jordan, and the nearest for them to attack. From what motive Joshua was induced to send spies thither, we are not informed; but we may reasonably conjecture, that he was commanded to do so, for the purpose of saving Rahab, who would otherwise have been involved in the general destruction,
This woman is called a harlot ; but it seems that the Hebrew word will admit of another interpretation, an hostess. From Rahab's account of the consternation which prevailed in Jericho, we learn in what manner the terror of the Lord, that fear which he promised to send before his people upon the heathen nations, operated, and by the effect which it had upon her, we may understand, that it was calculated to produce wisdom in well-inclined minds, but to intimidate the presumptuous sinner.
In order to clear Rahab from the imputation of trea. chery and treason, we must consider that her mind was possessed with a thorough persuasion, that the God of Israel was LORD of all things in heaven and earth; and that He was able to do by that city as He had done by Egypt, and she feared His ALMIGHTY power. By what means she had received intimation of the de. sign of God towards the Canaanites is uncertain, though from her own words we may conclude, that the king and people of Jericho had been warned of the intended destruction of the place: all excepting herself were unmoved; she, on the contrary, secretly resolved to adore and worship the God of Israel; she therefore rejoiced in the opportunity of being serviceable to His people. Those kings who threw off the authority of God, and devoted themselves to the worship of idols, encouraging their subjects to commit abominations to the LORD, were not intitled to allegiance from true believers, because no person could obey them, without disobeying
therefore what would have been treason and treachery in another case, was none in Rahab's, as she acted from what ought to be the first principle in every breast, love and fear of the Supreme Being. Her example, however, in respect to betraying her country, is not recommended to future imitation, for it was only
justifiable under those peculiar circumstances ; against a people evidently devoted to destruction for their wick edness, and in favour of a people visibly under the guidance and protection of the ALMIGHTY. In respect like wise to the falsity she uttered, her case was of a very particular nature; she had but one alternative, either to conceal the men whose cause she had espoused for just reasons, or to deliver them to their enemies; but we cannot wonder that she should be solicitous to pro. vide for her own future safety, by preserving those who would soon have the power of protecting her from the general destruction which she believed was coming on her country, and which her utmost fidelity to the people of Jericho would not have been able to avert. Had she owned they were in the house, she would have betrayed those who, properly speaking, were become her countrymen.
The Scriptures of the New Testament point out Rahab as a person of exemplary piety; and indeed to carry her through such an undertaking, she must have had a great degree of faith *; but she did not rest here, she shewed her faith by her works t. Let us imitate Rahab in respect to faith and trust in God, and, like her, let us shew kindness to his faithful servants. We shall never be tempted, as she was, to forego our allegiance to our sovereign on account of IDOL A TROUS WORSHIP, for none but a professed CHRISTIAN can reign over us: the King is bound to defend our faith, and consequently be is entitled to the loyalty of his subjects, who could not betray him to an enemy with out being guilty of a great sin.
* Heb. xi. 31.
Jam, ii. 25.
THE WATERS OF JORDAN DIVIDE AND THE PEOPLE PASS THROUGH THE MIDST OF THE RIVER.
From Joshua, Chap. iii. iv. AND Joshua rose early in the morning: and they removed from Shittim, and came to Jordan, he and all the children of Israel, and lodged there before they passed over
And it came to pass after three days that the officers went through the host; and they cominanded the people, saying, When ye see the ark of the covenant of the LORD your God, and the priests, the Levites bearing it, then
ye shall remove from your place, and go after it. Yet there shall be a space between you and it, about two thousand cubits by measure: come not near unto it, that ye may know the way by which ye must go ; for ye have not passed this way heretofore.
And Joshua said unto the people, Sanctify yourselves; for to-morrow the LORD will do wonders among you.
And Joshua spake unto the priests, saying, Take up the ark of the covenant, and pass over before the people. And they took up the ark of the covenant, and went before the people.
And the LORD said unto Joshua, this day will I begin to magnify thee in the sight of all Israel, that they may know that as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee.
And thou shalt command the priests that bear the ark of the covenant, saying, When ye are come to the brink of the water of Jordan, ye shall stand still in Jordan.
And Joshua said unto the children of Israel, Come hither, and hear the words of the LORD
And Joshua said, hereby ye shall know that the Mving God is among you, and that he will without fail drive out from before you the Canaanites, and the Hittites, and the Hivites, and the Perizzites, and the Girgashites, and the Amorites, and the Jebusites.
Behold, the ark of the covenant of the LORD of all the earth, passeth over before you into Jordan.
Now therefore take ye twelve men out of the tribes of Israel, out of every tribe a man.
And it shall come to pass, as soon as the soles of the feet of the priests that bear the ark of the Lond, the LORD of all the earth, shall rest in the waters of Jordan, that the waters of Jordan shall be cut off from the wa. ters that come down from above; and they shall stand upon an heap.
And came to pass when the people renioved from their tents, to pass over Jordan, and the priests bearing the ark of the covenamt before the people; and as they that bare the ark were come unto Jordan, and the feet of the priests that bare the ark were dipped in the brim of the water, (for Jordan overfloweth all his banks all the time of harvest).
That the waters which came down from above, stood and rose up on an heap very far from the city Adam that is beside Zaretan ; and those that came down toward the sea of the plain, even the salt-sea, failed, and were cut off: and the people passed over right against Jericho.
And the priests that bare the ark of the covenant of the Lord, stood firm on dry ground in the midst of Jordan, and all the Israelites passed over on dry ground, until all the people were passed elean over Jordan.
And it came to pass when all the people were clean passed over Jordan, that the LORD spake unto Joshua,