Have you ever considered that the fear of God can actually inspire courage? It’s true, and the biblical account from Joshua 2 is a great example. With Moses’ death, Joshua became the new leader of the Israelites, and one of the first things he did was send spies to scope out the land promised to them by Yahweh. (Do you recall that Joshua was sent by Moses with eleven other men to spy four decades earlier? Joshua and Caleb were ready to claim God’s promise, but the other ten were too afraid to cross into the new land. So they all got to wander around for another 40 years. I bet Joshua was ready to finally lay claim to that land!)
The spies—only two instead of a large group, no doubt less conspicuous—were sent generally to the area around Jordan and specifically to Jericho. The men went, and in Jericho they took lodging in the house of a prostitute named Rahab.
Do you see the words, “So they left”? There’s no hemming and hawing around, no “why don’t you send somebody else,” no opposition at all. This was a dangerous mission, but these two men must have had confidence in Joshua’s leadership and—even more than that—trust that God, who had sent them to claim this land, would protect them. Their deep awe, which is a healthy fear, of God fueled their courage. But they weren’t the only courageous ones. We’ll look that tomorrow.