“By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they had been encircled for seven days. By faith Rahab the harlot did not perish along with those who were disobedient, after she had welcomed the spies in peace. And what more shall I say? For time will fail me if I tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, of David and Samuel and the prophets, who by faith conquered kingdoms, performed acts of righteousness, obtained promises, shut the mouths of lions, quenched the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, from weakness were made strong, became mighty in war, put foreign armies to flight.”
---End of Scripture verses---
What was the defining aspect of the faith that brought the walls of Jericho down? It was obedience. There was no logical connection between marching around a walled city for seven days and then having the walls fall down flat. Typically it took several months or even years of careful, methodic planning and execution of military strategy in order to defeat an ancient city fortified with sturdy walls. But Israel accomplished it in seven days because they did exactly what God told them to do. It was the power of God appropriated by the obedient faith of His people that conquered the city of Jericho. When we believe and do what God says, no matter how peculiar it may sound, amazing things can happen.
Faith saved “Rahab the harlot” alone out of all the inhabitants of Jericho because she believed that “the Lord your God, He is God in heaven above and on earth beneath” (Joshua 2:11); and she acted on this conviction when she “welcomed the spies in peace” (verse 31). By faith kingdoms have been conquered, the mouths of lions have been shut (verse 33), armies have been put to flight, and death by fire and sword has been escaped (verse 34). But, as we will see in tomorrow’s reading, faith did not always provide rescue from physical torture and death. Some of faith’s greatest champions did not escape the edge of the sword, but it is precisely because of this that they “obtained promises” that are much more precious than life itself. Only faith can give us the strength to endure the unthinkable for the name of God.
Please read Hebrews 11:35-38 for tomorrow.
Have a great day!
- Louie Taylor