Melting in Fear

“Agreed,” she replied. “Let it be as you say.” So she sent them away, and they departed. And she tied the scarlet cord in the window. When they left, they went into the hills and stayed there three days, until the pursuers had searched all along the road and returned without finding them. Then the two men started back. They went down out of the hills, forded the river and came to Joshua son of Nun and told him everything that had happened to them. They said to Joshua, “The LORD has surely given the whole land into our hands; all the people are melting in fear because of us.” Joshua 2:21-24

These verses are the conclusion of the two spies Joshua sent into Jericho prior to Israel’s crossing the Jordan and starting to take over the land God promised to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Rahab hid the two spies from the king of Jericho, then influenced his men to go in the wrong direction. In return the spies promise to spare the lives of her family and save them when Israel attacks Jericho. In the three days the spies were gone, they accomplished two things; 1) they save Rahab who later marries an Israelite and has a son, Boaz, who marries Ruth, who is the great grandmother to King David, and 22 generations later to Jesus.; and 2) they learn from Rehab that the people are melting in fear of Israel and their God. The spies provided no attack strategy to Joshua, but instead an assessment of the people’s heart. Joshua and Israel proceeded knowing that God was going before them and that Jericho was already half defeated due to their people’s hearts.

Wouldn’t it be great to know the heart of anyone you are sharing Christ with. Not that you are trying to defeat them, but to help decide what you do and say. Well you have a spy, the Holy Spirit who searches the heart. It is the Holy Spirit in you that is your helper. He empowers you with boldness to be witness of Jesus. More importantly it is not you, but rather the Holy Spirit that draws people to the truth, that convicts people of sin, that saves people and enables them to become born again followers of Jesus. If the Holy Spirit does all that, what is your part? Be strong and courageous, trust God, open your mouth and let the Holy Spirit speak through you.