11. Lot was saved from Sodom by his kindness and devotion. While the surrounding country was punished by fire and brimstone, God showed that he does not abandon those who trust in him, but will punish and correct people who walk away from his ways. Lot’s wife left with him but still clung to the worldly ways so she was made an example and is a pillar of salt to this day. By this it was made know that double-minded people and those who don’t trust the power of God would be made an example for everyone to see.
12. By faith and hospitality Rahab the harlot was saved. When Joshua sent the spies to Jericho, the king of that country learned they had come to spy. He sent men to search for them and put them to death. The hospitable Rahab let the spies into her home and hid them on her roof under straw. The men sent by the king came to Rahab’s house and said, “The men sent as spies came here, give them to us like the king commanded.” She answered them saying, “Yes, the two men came here but left and are not here.” And she sent them in the opposite direction. She said to the spies, “I know that your God has given you this city because fear and dread have gripped everyone. So, when you take it, please save me and my father’s house.” They said to her, “We will grant your request. When you hear us approaching, gather your family in this house and they will be spared. Anyone found outside this house will perish.” They also gave her a sign. A scarlet cloth to hang outside her window. This shows that by the blood of the Lord, those who believe and hope in God shall be saved. Rahab not only had faith, but was also the gift of prophecy.
13. Brothers and sisters, let’s be humble-minded and get rid of pride, arrogance, foolishness, and anger and do as it is written. The Lord said, “Don’t let the wise man boast of his wisdom, nor the strong man boast of his strength, not the rich man boat of his money, but if you boast, boast in the Lord, to seek him and show judgement and faithfulness.” Above all, remember the words the Lord Jesus spoke, teaching us gentleness and patience. He said, “Be merciful so you will get mercy. Forgive so that you may be forgiven. The way you treat others is the way you will be treated, and the way you give is the way you will receive. You will be judged the way you judge others, and the way you show kindness is how you will be shown kindness. Whatever measure you used to measure other people by, it will be used to measure you.” Let’s strengthen ourselves with these commandments and rules so that we can live obediently to his holy words with humble hearts. Scripture says, “I will look to the person who has a humble and repentant spirit and trembles at my word.”
14. So, it is holy and right brothers and sisters that we should become obedient to God instead of following those who through pride and defiance have made themselves leaders of a despicable imitation. We will experience, not just a small harm, but a serious peril if we blindly follow the whims of men who jump into pride and rebellion to separate us from that which is good. Let us be kind and good to each other as we imitate God who made us. It is written, “The merciful will inherit the land, and the innocent will be left on it, but the disobedient will be removed from it.” And it says, “I have seen wicked and ruthless people flourishing like a tree in its native soil. But when I looked again, they were gone! Though I searched for them, I could not find them! Look at those who are honest and good, for a wonderful future awaits those who love peace.” (NLT)
15. Remember to associate with people who genuinely cultivate peace and not those whose intentions are just a mask. In a certain place it says, “These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts don’t love me.” And, “They bless me with their mouths, but curse me with their hearts.” Again it says, “They talked like they loved him with their mouths but they lied to him because their hearts were not right with him nor were they faithful to his covenant.” Silence the lying lips and shut up the tongue that talks with pride. Who has said we will prevail with our speech, our mouths are our own, who is lord over us? Because of the anguish of the needy and the groans of the poor, I will rise, says the Lord, I will hurry to bring relief.