whose house was
built into the city wall. The king of Jericho head of the spies
and ordered Rahab to give them up. But she hid them on her roof,
saying they had left when it was dark - about the time of the
shutting of the city gate.
She told the two
spies that the people of Jericho had heard how the Lord had dried
up the Red Sea for the Hebrews as they left Egypt and that they
had no courage or wish to fight against such a favored people. She
made a bargain to help the two men escape if they would spare her
family when Joshua's army conquered the city. Then she took a
scarlet rope and let them down through a window, over the wall to
the plain outside the city. She bound the scarlet rope around the
same window, to mark her house so that it would not be destroyed.
returned and told Joshua what had happened and how the people of
Jericho felt. The Hebrews set out immediately on this final
stretch of their wanderings. And Joshua led them just as the Lord
had commanded him.
When they came to
the banks of the Jordan, he chose twelve priests, one from each
tribe, who carried the golden ark, and these went ahead of the
others. As soon as their feet touched the river, the waters rolled
back, leaving a dry path, so that the people could cross the
riverbed into the land of Canaan.
crossing, each of the twelve priests picked up a large stone from
the riverbed, and placed it as a memorial to mark the spot where
the Hebrews had first set foot in Canaan. Immediately, the waters
of the Jordan flowed again. God commanded this so that in days to
come, when children should ask their fathers the meaning of the
stones, they could answer that there God had held back the waters
for the children of Israel to cross the Jordan. Then all the
people of the earth would know how mighty was the Lord and how
careful of His children.
When the people
of Jericho witnessed the crossing of the Jordan, they were
frightened and closed the gates of the city so that no one could
go in or out.
As they saw the
Hebrews coming, the prepared to fight. But the Hebrews came in a
procession led by seven priests carrying trumpets made from ram
horns. They were followed by seven more priests bearing the golden
ark, and then be all the soldiers and the people. Once each day
for six days they paraded about the city in silence, as the Lord
had commanded, led by the priests blowing on their trumpets. On
the seventh day, they arose at dawn and paraded about the city
seven times. And after the seventh time, when the priests had
blown their trumpets, Joshua cried to the people, "Shout! for
the Lord has given you the city."
So the Hebrews
shouted as the trumpets blew, and the walls of Jericho came
tumbling down. The people went into the city and took it, and
destroyed all that was in the city - except the house that was
marked with the scarlet rope. For Joshua saved Rahab and all her
household because she had hidden the messengers he sent to spy on
died, he warned the Hebrews to remember how God had always been
with them and had led them out of slavery into the rich land of
Canaan. The people promised, but after Joshua's death they forgot
the Lord and turned to the gods of the tribes that lived about
them. God was angry with them, and when neighboring tribes made
war on the Hebrews He no longer came to help them. So although
they had reached the Promised Land, it was a long time before they
could enjoy it in peace.