If anything, Rahab represents the dehumanized, marginalized, and overlooked people in any society. These are folks who are invisible, or worse, untouchable. Yet, if we see them through the lens of Scripture, we might consider them some of the world’s most reachable of souls.
Consider Jesus’ repeated claim that “the first will be last and the last will be first.” Among other things I take this to mean, “Reach out to the last first.” It’s not that he loves them most, but they’re the most needy of love, so he begins there. It’s not that he cares nothing for those who are at the head of society’s line, but that he rushes first to the back of the line!
Though he loves all people equally, he may seem biased toward the world’s neediest. But as Ron Sider points out, “equal concern for everyone requires special attention to specific people. In a family, loving parents do not provide equal tutorial time to a son struggling hard to scrape by with D’s and a daughter easily making A’s. Precisely in order to be ‘impartial’ and love both equally, they devote extra time to helping the needier child… (Good firefighters do not spend equal time at every house; they are ‘partial’ to homes on fire.)”
If God puts the disadvantaged and disregarded at the head of the line, doesn’t it follow that we should do the same?
– Originally published in Reaching Rahab: Joining God In His Quest For Friends