[From May 20, 2013]
"Then Joshua son of Nun sent 2 men secretly from Shittim as spies, saying, 'Go, view the land, especially Jericho.' So they went, and entered the house of a prostitute whose name was Rahab, and spent the night there."
Just into the Promised Land, Joshua sends two spies to scout the surrounding towns, especially Jericho. That's understandable. But WHERE the spies go first is quite shocking! Scripture tells us the first place they visit is a prostitute's house in Jericho (say what?!?!). Maybe they went for intelligence? Maybe they figured folks in the Red Light District would have insider information, not available to the general public? All the narrator tells us is that "they spent the night there."
Can you imagine these guys turning in their expense reports to Joshua upon return from their assignment? 'Um, yah... about that... uh, we were... um... doing research!!! Yah, that's what it was! We had to get close to the locals, so... you know... so they'd TRUST us!"
Well, despite their highly questionable morals, it worked well for the spies. They found the Madam (Rahab) to be a woman who not only knew the Israelite history, but feared God and agreed to hide & shelter them. Could God have been behind all this... or was it a case of "boys will be boys"? The oldest profession in the world comes through again, for men in need. Strange that God would choose (allow?) this scenario here. But it helps us look more favorably on Rahab, a woman of faith.