The Jericho Scenario
The popular account given in the book of Joshua about the miraculous conquest of the city of Jericho is a wonderful testimony of the power of Yahweh as He bears His arm for His people, but yet, it is far more than just that! It is a cryptic prophetic scenario picturing the Bride Theft and accompanying judgment of the household of God. It is but one among many detailed prophetic types that each features a dramatic event signifying this particular resurrection. There is agreement among them as each testifies of a pivotal and victorious transition on the last day of the first harvest Feast on the Lord's calendar. In the Jericho scenario the resurrection is pictured as the walls of Jericho fall flat on the seventh day. The wall was felled by the hand of Yahweh at the blowing of the last trumpets and accompanied by shouts.
It shall be that when they make a long blast with the ram's horn, and when you hear the sound of the trumpet, all the people shall shout with a great shout; and the wall of the city will fall down flat, and the people will go up every man straight ahead.
15 Then on the seventh day they rose early at the dawning of the day and marched around the city in the same manner seven times; only on that day they marched around the city seven times. 16 At the seventh time, when the priests blew the trumpets, Joshua said to the people, “Shout! For the Lord has given you the city.
20 So the people shouted, and priests blew the trumpets; and when the people heard the sound of the trumpet, the people shouted with a great shout and the wall fell down flat, so that the people went up into the city, every man straight ahead, and they took the city. 21 They utterly destroyed everything in the city, both man and woman, young and old, and ox and sheep and donkey, with the edge of the sword.
The trumpet blowing and shouting brings to mind a pair of familiar verses.
16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord.
1 Thessalonians 4:16-17
51 Behold, I tell you a mystery; we will not all sleep, but we will all be changed, 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed.
1 Corinthians 15:51-52
This scenario shares some elements in common with others you may have read about on The Open Scroll site. For example, the symbolism of the walls miraculously falling flat is like what is pictured in Acts 12 as the iron gate that leads to the city opens by itself for Peter and the angel to pass through. Praise the Lord for His continued favor on us as we seek fresh insight in the closing weeks of this season.
Before continuing here you may want to take this opportunity to become familiar with the biblical account by reading the first six chapters of Joshua.
Ready? Let's consider some of the symbols and their meaning on this prophetic level. I'll begin with what may already be familiar.
Joshua is widely recognized as a type of Y'shua. The name Joshua means salvation and it is the same name as Y'shua. Y'shua is, of course, the coming Bridegroom, the Sun of Righteousness, (Psalm 19:4-6) yet Joshua as the Bridegroom is not an element in the Jericho scenario as revealed to me. The crossing of the Jordan and the taking of Jericho are the events marking the entrance and arrival of God's people in the promised land, having crossed over from Egypt, the land of bondage. This is widely acknowledged as a general prophetic type of God's people crossing over from the earthly to the heavenly, from the mortal flesh where we are bound by the law of sin and death to the "promised land," with freedom from that bondage to the law of sin and death that accompanies the immortal. In the Jericho scenario we see a clear picture of the reality of a season of resurrection.
Two clues that this prophetic drama relates most particularly to the Bride and the Bride Theft resurrection event are found in the name of the city; Jericho. Jericho means Moon City, the City of the Moon. The Moon symbolizes the Bride, as shown in the writing called The Moon Bride, so, Jericho is the city of the Bride. The name Jericho also means fragrance, or, fragrant, with a beautifully poetic association with the Bride and the place of her joining with her Bridegroom presented in the very passionate Song of Solomon. (See Song of Solomon 2:8-13 and Song of Solomon 4:7-16 - you will like this!) Jericho as such may also be seen in the description of the Royal Messianic Bridegroom at his wedding in Psalm 45.
8 All Your garments are fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia; Out of ivory palaces stringed instruments have made You glad. 9 Kings’ daughters are among Your noble ladies; At Your right hand stands the queen in gold from Ophir.
Rahab - the Bride Type
The Bride symbol I want to focus on is the woman Rahab, the resident of Moon City who has the central role in this account. As common to other Bride types in the biblical record (See The Bridegroom and the Bride) she is a Gentile and, as with the woman at the well in John 4, her status in the community and general perception of her character is less than what might be considered ideal. She is a harlot, but yet we see that she has spiritual insight and faith and her acts are righteous. She and those in her house are saved from the destruction visited upon the others of the city when the walls fall flat and all life within is destroyed. In Rahab's salvation we see a snapshot of the salvation of the Bride, her resurrection, the Bride Theft. Her salvation is due to her righteous acts yet utterly dependent upon her faith and obedience. The provision for her salvation is revealed in a vivid allusion to the Pesah as it was established at the time of the exodus from Egypt, the very event that initiated the season of crossing over into the promised land. Ultimately, this Gentile Bride type is highly exalted, found in the genealogy of King David (and of the Lion of the tribe of Judah Himself! Matthew 1:5) and held up as an example for us in Hebrews 11.
Let's consider the record from Joshua 2.
1 Then Joshua the son of Nun sent two men as spies secretly from Shittim, saying, “Go, view the land, especially Jericho.” So they went and came into the house of a harlot whose name was Rahab, and lodged there. 2 It was told the king of Jericho, saying, “Behold, men from the sons of Israel have come here tonight to search out the land.” 3 And the king of Jericho sent word to Rahab, saying, “Bring out the men who have come to you, who have entered your house, for they have come to search out all the land.” 4 But the woman had taken the two men and hidden them, and she said, “Yes, the men came to me, but I did not know where they were from. 5 It came about when it was time to shut the gate at dark, that the men went out; I do not know where the men went. Pursue them quickly, for you will overtake them.” 6 But she had brought them up to the roof and hidden them in the stalks of flax which she had laid in order on the roof. 7 So the men pursued them on the road to the Jordan to the fords; and as soon as those who were pursuing them had gone out, they shut the gate.
The two spies sent to search out the land went quite directly to the house of Rahab. Mission accomplished! You see, the spies represent the holy spirit, searching out the promised land for a Bride for HaMashiach. They found her: Rahab. The spies are without names and are seen here in the same function as the unnamed servant who was sent to find a bride for Isaac. Notice how they were sent secretly from Shittim. Shittim is the name of the wood the ark of the covenant was made from, the ark representing Y'shua.
Rahab did not comply with the king of Jericho's request because the Bride does not heed the voice of the non-Bride "Babylon" church. The king of Jericho represents the appointed authorities of the church of the body, out of which the Bride has come. She hears and obeys a higher authority, her Bridegroom. There is no sermon at this level of focus about lying or deceiving the civil authorities. See, this passage is really appointed to be understood in the prophetic context. Yes, really!
The Bride is, at this point in the narrative, risking her life for the benefit of Israel.
The act of taking the spies to the roof and hiding them in the flax she had laid out is a beautiful picture. I'm quoting now from The Barley Overcomers By Dr. Stephen E. Jones
Joshua sent two spies to Jericho. It was the time of Passover (Joshua 5:10), and Rahab hid the spies under stalks of flax (Joshua 2:6). Flax ripened at the same time as barley, as we saw from Ex. 9:31. Linen comes from flax. It was used to make priestly garments, and in Rev. 19:8 we see that “fine linen is the righteousness of saints.”
The week after Passover is also called the Feast of Unleavened Bread. The people were required to remove all leaven from their houses for a full seven days. Leaven is symbolic of sin; thus, removing the leavened bread depicts the removal of all sin from one’s house (body). This is the same symbolism as we find in flax, for to be clothed in flax (linen) is to depict putting on the righteousness of Christ. So all of these things work together, woven into a complete picture of the plan of God for Christ and the overcoming body. The body of Christ (the overcomers) who are identified with their Head will soon follow Him in the first resurrection.
Great insight! I see the flax is laid out on the roof because it has to be exposed to the Sun, the Bridegroom, which prepares the flax to become the linen that represents the heavenly garment or body. Rahab had laid these stalks out in order on the roof, which is to say she was doing righteous works and laying up a heavenly reward. The spies hidden in the flax seems pretty appropriate, given the symbolism. The holy spirit is integral with the righteous works, and the non-Bride church would certainly not be discerning and discovering it - the "spies" are well hidden indeed!
Let's continue the account, picking up the narrative in verse 8.
8 Now before they lay down, she came up to them on the roof, 9 and said to the men, “I know that the Lord has given you the land, and that the terror of you has fallen on us, and that all the inhabitants of the land have melted away before you. 10 For we have heard how the Lord dried up the water of the Red Sea before you when you came out of Egypt, and what you did to the two kings of the Amorites who were beyond the Jordan, to Sihon and Og, whom you utterly destroyed. 11 When we heard it, our hearts melted and no courage remained in any man any longer because of you; for the Lord your God, He is God in heaven above and on earth beneath. 12 Now therefore, please swear to me by the Lord, since I have dealt kindly with you, that you also will deal kindly with my father’s household, and give me a pledge of truth, 13 and spare my father and my mother and my brothers and my sisters, with all who belong to them, and deliver our lives from death.” 14 So the men said to her, “Our life for yours if you do not tell this business of ours; and it shall come about when the Lord gives us the land that we will deal kindly and faithfully with you.”
Rahab relates her knowledge of their God and His works and plans and acknowledges that the Lord has given Israel the land, which is, in part, to say the Bride understands Romans 11 and how that Israel is again front and center in the Lord's agenda. I want to point out how we already observed how the Bride type was not merely interested in self preservation. Remember, she lied to the king and hid the spies at great personal risk. Her interest here extends to the salvation of her family.
The next verse in the account introduces an interesting element of the Bride type; the wall.
Then she let them down by a rope through the window, for her house was on the city wall, so that she was living on the wall.
I believe even the fact that Rahab lived in the wall is very significant, beyond just allowing for an escape from the city through the window. One role of the Bride is to function as watchmen on the wall. As the wall surrounds the city so the Bride surrounds, covers, protects the church of the body. When the city was taken it was the wall that fell flat, the wall Rahab and her family were in. That was the part of the city that was supernaturally touched, and they alone were saved. In the Song of Songs, the Bride type says her lover stands behind our wall, (2:9) so Rahab, in the wall, is most near in proximity to the Bridegroom lover. In another symbol, seen in the following verse, the Bride is or was a wall, establishing yet another Bride type connection.
I was a wall, and my breasts were like towers; Then I became in his eyes as one who finds peace.
Song of Songs 8:10
As we pick up the narrative in verse 16 we come to the passage that has a most intriguing Pesah allusion. In this passage you will notice a reference to three days, and, if you've been educated in this matter you know such a reference signals the presence of a resurrection scenario in the immediate context. (See Resurrection on the Third Day) Indeed, we have one, don't we?
16 She said to them, “Go to the hill country, so that the pursuers will not happen upon you, and hide yourselves there for three days until the pursuers return. Then afterward you may go on your way.” 17 The men said to her, “We shall be free from this oath to you which you have made us swear, 18 unless, when we come into the land, you tie this cord of scarlet thread in the window through which you let us down, and gather to yourself into the house your father and your mother and your brothers and all your father’s household. 19 It shall come about that anyone who goes out of the doors of your house into the street, his blood shall be on his own head, and we shall be free; but anyone who is with you in the house, his blood shall be on our head if a hand is laid on him. 20 But if you tell this business of ours, then we shall be free from the oath which you have made us swear.” 21 She said, “According to your words, so be it.” So she sent them away, and they departed; and she tied the scarlet cord in the window.
To make the connection to Pesah, let's refresh our memories with a history lesson. Before departing from Egypt, one last plague was to come against Egypt. This one would be executed on the basis of every household in Egypt with one exception. The exception was relative not to the ethnicity of the occupants of the house but whether there was obedience to a peculiar set of commands. A death angel was sent out to visit every household and the firstborn of that household among men and beast would be killed. Salvation was provided through the blood of a lamb or goat, sacrificed for this purpose. The sacrificed animal represents Y'shua, the Pesah lamb who was sacrificed for us according to 1 Corinthians 5:7. In order to be spared being visited by the death angel, the household had to have the blood of the sacrificed animal applied to the doorway of their house. Blood was demanded of every household without exception: The blood of the firstborn of man and beast, or, a substitute would be accepted on behalf of those with faith and obedience.
Moreover, they shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and on the lintel of the houses in which they eat it.
12 For I will go through the land of Egypt on that night, and will strike down all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgments—I am the Lord. 13 The blood shall be a sign for you on the houses where you live; and when I see the blood I will pass over you, and no plague will befall you to destroy you when I strike the land of Egypt.
And so it happened that, in all the land of Egypt, the only households spared were those marked and thereby protected by the blood of the lamb, sprinkled on the lintel and posts of the door. And here is the beautiful connection in the Jericho scenario: Rahab and those of her house were spared because of the crimson cord at her window, representing the blood of the Lamb as established at Pesah!
This connection is something I had very briefly touched on in another writing where I had been addressing the meaning of the scarlet thread that had been tied on Zerah's hand as this twin was being born to Judah and Tamar. I'll quote it here. (From Joseph and Benjamin - Part I)
The scarlet thread on Zerah's hand is that which also identified Rahab to those who took the city of Jericho.
I then referenced the relevant passage in Joshua (2:17-21) and made the following comment.
This event took place at the time of the barley harvest - Pesah. The scarlet thread signifies the Pesah Lamb's blood protection from the destroyer angel. It identifies one with the Lamb and sanctifies, for salvation. The scarlet thread work is associated with Pesah and the barley harvest. This Zerah work is particularly a sanctification and salvation work.
The insight into this connection between the scarlet cord and the Pesah blood might not be widely known, but it's certainly known. The following quote is from a very good study I found online.
Biblical Horizons Newsletter - No. 99
Passover and the Structure of Joshua 2
by Peter J. Leithart - November, 1997
Finally, 2:15-21 also has a chiastic structure, and here the Passover comes prominently to view.
2:15: spies escape through window 2:16: Rahab speaks: "Go to the hills" 2:17: free from oath 2:18a: unless you tie scarlet cord 2:18b: gather household in house 2:19: bloodguilt 2:20: free from oath 2:21a: Rahab speaks: spies depart 2:21b: Rahab ties cord at window
The structure highlights the Passover connections in several ways. It underlines what is evident in the narrative, namely, that the window with the scarlet cord is a way of escape (the cord parallels the rope), like the bloody doorway of Passover. This is reinforced by the parallel of 2:18a and 2:19, where the scarlet cord is linked with blood guilt: If the cord of blood is not displayed, then the blood of Rahab’s family will be shed, with impunity, by Israel; only a display of "blood" will save Rahab from a bloody death. Finally, the center of this section repeats the command of Exodus 12:22. These structural indications should eliminate doubt (commonly expressed by commentators) that Rahab’s deliverance is to be understood as a Passover.
Certainly, Rahab's deliverance is to be understood as another view of a Pesah fulfillment, and according to the now well established pattern of like-mannered witnesses the holy spirit is calling it out to instruct us about what some appointed anniversary of the Feast will bring! And, beloved - that appointed time has come! The salvation of the Bride is at hand!
The Last Day - Always the Last Day
Concerning the timing of the taking of Jericho, it was on the seventh day when the city was marched around seven times. This seventh day of the marching was not just some random day but is commonly acknowledged as being the last day of the Feast. This is consistent with all Bride Theft models, in every instance when a time frame is referenced. To conclude that the Bride Theft might come on some day other than the last day of this Feast is to ignore the facts. The scriptures declare that some will confidently know the date in advance, as addressed in this study, Will No One Know the Day?
The Bigger Picture, the Bitter Picture
Now, after you have reflected upon all that has been presented here you may come to meditate upon what happened to the residents of Jericho who were not of Rahab's household. I want you to understand that resurrection is one result or facet of judgment being visited upon a people. To see the bigger picture you must view judgment like a coin with two sides. One side is reward and the other is consequence. Whenever judgment is executed, those worthy of mercy and reward receive their due and those deserving consequences receive their due. Whenever we have but one side of this coin in view we must be mindful of the other side. This model of Jericho exhibits the vital truth that a resurrection is the execution of a judgment, just like at the season of the exodus when the death angel visited and then again at the crossing of the sea, where Israel was saved and the Egyptian army was destroyed!
Consider the record at the Exodus.
26 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand over the sea so that the waters may come back over the Egyptians, over their chariots and their horsemen.” 27 So Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and the sea returned to its normal state at daybreak, while the Egyptians were fleeing right into it; then the Lord overthrew the Egyptians in the midst of the sea. 28 The waters returned and covered the chariots and the horsemen, even Pharaoh’s entire army that had gone into the sea after them; not even one of them remained. 29 But the sons of Israel walked on dry land through the midst of the sea, and the waters were like a wall to them on their right hand and on their left. 30 Thus the Lord saved Israel that day from the hand of the Egyptians, and Israel saw the Egyptians dead on the seashore. 31 When Israel saw the great power which the Lord had used against the Egyptians, the people feared the Lord, and they believed in the Lord and in His servant Moses.
You see, judgment has two facets that are salvation and destruction. Consider both as you read through the following record of the taking of Jericho. Make note that, in the last verse, the curse regarding the firstborn puts kind of a final Pesah stamp on the Jericho account.
15 Then on the seventh day they rose early at the dawning of the day and marched around the city in the same manner seven times; only on that day they marched around the city seven times. 16 At the seventh time, when the priests blew the trumpets, Joshua said to the people, “Shout! For the Lord has given you the city. 17 The city shall be under the ban, it and all that is in it belongs to the Lord; only Rahab the harlot and all who are with her in the house shall live, because she hid the messengers whom we sent. 18 But as for you, only keep yourselves from the things under the ban, so that you do not covet them and take some of the things under the ban, and make the camp of Israel accursed and bring trouble on it. 19 But all the silver and gold and articles of bronze and iron are holy to the Lord; they shall go into the treasury of the Lord.” 20 So the people shouted, and priests blew the trumpets; and when the people heard the sound of the trumpet, the people shouted with a great shout and the wall fell down flat, so that the people went up into the city, every man straight ahead, and they took the city. 21 They utterly destroyed everything in the city, both man and woman, young and old, and ox and sheep and donkey, with the edge of the sword. 22 Joshua said to the two men who had spied out the land, “Go into the harlot’s house and bring the woman and all she has out of there, as you have sworn to her.” 23 So the young men who were spies went in and brought out Rahab and her father and her mother and her brothers and all she had; they also brought out all her relatives and placed them outside the camp of Israel. 24 They burned the city with fire, and all that was in it. Only the silver and gold, and articles of bronze and iron, they put into the treasury of the house of the Lord. 25 However, Rahab the harlot and her father’s household and all she had, Joshua spared; and she has lived in the midst of Israel to this day, for she hid the messengers whom Joshua sent to spy out Jericho. 26 Then Joshua made them take an oath at that time, saying, “Cursed before the Lord is the man who rises up and builds this city Jericho; with the loss of his firstborn he shall lay its foundation, and with the loss of his youngest son he shall set up its gates.”
Are you sitting down? Good. Ok. When I wrote earlier that the king of Jericho represents the appointed authorities of the church of the body you may have rightly inferred and discerned that the residents of Jericho therefore represent the church of the body. Some of you may be unsettled by this association because they are destroyed, but, stay with me - this is for you. What is being referred to in Joshua 2 as the king of Jericho is in Matthew 24 called the head of the house. I've included in the sidebar an excerpt from another writing on this site that is so relevant I copied it here. Jericho is the house from which the Bride is stolen, the very household of God referred to in the following verse.
For it is time for judgment to begin with the household of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God?
1 Peter 4:17
Remember, judgment is like the coin with two sides! Whenever you see one side, the other is there even if not presently in view, so, that verse also references a time of resurrection! The judgment that comes on the household of God that is not "in Rahab's house in the wall" is going destroy it! This is why the fifth chapter of 1 Thessalonians follows the fourth.
4:16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore comfort one another with these words.
5:1 Now as to the times and the epochs, brethren, you have no need of anything to be written to you. 2 For you yourselves know full well that the day of the Lord will come just like a thief in the night. 3 While they are saying, “Peace and safety!” then destruction will come upon them suddenly like labor pains upon a woman with child, and they will not escape. 4 But you, brethren, are not in darkness, that the day would overtake you like a thief;
1 Thessalonians 4:16-5:4
Do you see it? Salvation and destruction together. See The Bride Theft for more detail.
If you prayerfully consider the passage Joshua 6:15-26 you may recognize Babylon, which is a confusion or mixture of the holy and the profane. These two components of Babylon are separated at the taking of Jericho, a work the judgment is intended to accomplish and will accomplish quite thoroughly. The part that is destroyed represents the profane, the carnal, and the part that is kept represents the holy, which is "put into the treasury of the house of the LORD."
I think the following passage will speak to you about this matter as it does to me. Consider that we are collectively as God's field, building, and Moon City.
9 For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, God’s building. 10 According to the grace of God which was given to me, like a wise master builder I laid a foundation, and another is building on it. But each man must be careful how he builds on it. 11 For no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 Now if any man builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, 13 each man’s work will become evident; for the day will show it because it is to be revealed with fire, and the fire itself will test the quality of each man’s work. 14 If any man’s work which he has built on it remains, he will receive a reward. 15 If any man’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.
1 Corinthians 3:9-15
In closing, I pray that what has been addressed will speak to you of the love of the Lord Y'shua, His faithful provision for us and the urgency of our time as the season of our preparation draws to a close.