Book Review: The Crimson Cord

Rahab-Cover-293x453Wife to a gambler who took one too many risks, Rahab finds herself sold as a slave to cover her husband’s debt. Forced into prostitution by Dabir, counselor to the Syrian king, Rahab despairs of ever regaining her freedom and her self-respect. But when Israelite spies enter Jericho and come to lodge at her house, Rahab sees a glimmer of hope and the opportunity of a lifetime.

In one risky moment, she takes a leap of faith, puts her trust in a God she does not know, and vows to protect the spies from the authorities. When the armies of Israel arrive weeks later, Rahab hopes they will keep their promise, but she has no idea what kind of challenges await her outside Jericho’s walls–or if she will ever know the meaning of love.

***

Be prepared to walk back in time… to live the life of Rahab, to breathe the dusty air, and endure her hardships. Be prepared to love her.

I knew within a few pages Jill Eileen Smith had written another masterpiece. I embraced this story with the same passion that I did all her other novels. I couldn’t put it down until I reached the last page. I wanted to know that Rahab would be okay, even knowing the Bible story wasn’t enough. I needed to know Jill’s version, too. Jill takes us from the beginning and creates compassion by explaining how Rahab became a prostitute.

One message that I clearly read: each of us is a sinner. We are condemned to die a sinner’s death without the grace of God. This message was delivered unapologetically, yet through fiction, which makes it fun to read because the bad stuff is happening to someone else. We can sit and say that would never happen to me or I wouldn’t put myself in that situation, but the truth of the matter is we are all sinners. It doesn’t matter what your manner of sin might look like today. Deep down we are all the same. We are all in need of salvation.

This is a book about passion and purpose. A woman who is forced into slavery as a prostitute. Her one hope for rescue is the one who betrays her. Life isn’t easy, but she endures and finds a way to be content.

Smith paints a picture of a woman tested beyond belief, yet, she comes through the fire and shines. God has a purpose for each of our lives. He has a plan, even if we don’t see it at this moment. I love how Smith wrote Rahab’s character. There are so many possibilities for how to create a character in this position, yet she made her human. This is a book I will be thinking about for a long time.

 ***

Jill Eileen Smith is the author of the Wives of the Patriarchs series and best-selling author of the Wives of King David series. Her research has taken her from the Bible to Israel, and she particularly enjoys learning how women lived in Old Testament times.

jill eileen

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