Lessons from the Faith of Rahab, an Unlikely Hero | alyssajhoward.com

Lessons from the Faith of Rahab, an Unlikely Hero

Rahab was a prostitute. She worshipped false gods and was a liar. Her nation was also doomed to destruction. Yet, her name is known to this day. To say that she was an unlikely hero is an incredible understatement. But the faith of Rahab changed the course of her life forever, and God used her in a mighty way. Continue Reading

What Do the Ten Commandments Have to Do with Jesus? | alyssajhoward.com

What Do the Ten Commandments Have to Do with Jesus?

One of the most well-known stories in the entire Bible centers around Moses receiving the Ten Commandments. It’s one of those elements of Scripture that nearly everyone knows about… even if they haven’t read the Bible. Some Christians post these commandments on the walls of their homes, and they serve as a basic moral law for many. But where did the Ten Commandments come from exactly? What was their purpose? And most importantly, what do they have to do with Jesus? Continue Reading

Let My People Go: Victory, the Cross, and Freedom in Jesus

Let my people go! I’m sure we can all imagine Moses shouting this phrase to Pharaoh with his fist raised high demanding freedom for the children of Israel. Ten plagues later, they were finally free to go. (Well, sort of… Pharaoh decided to go after them, God parted the waters of the Red Sea… you know the rest of the story.)

Interestingly enough, Moses didn’t demand their freedom simply for freedom’s sake. He wasn’t claiming injustice… although he certainly could have considering they were overworked and mistreated as slaves. When speaking to Pharaoh he simply proclaimed, “Thus says the Lord, the God of the Hebrews, ‘How long will you refuse to humble yourself before Me? Let My people go, that they may serve Me.‘” Continue Reading

4 Powerful Lessons to be Learned from the Life of Joseph | alyssajhoward.com

4 Powerful Lessons to be Learned from the Life of Joseph

If I had to pick a favorite Old Testament Bible story, it would undoubtedly be the life of Joseph. From beginning to end, his life is both compelling and inspiring. One of twelve sons, Joseph was the favorite of his father Jacob. And because of that, his brothers were more than jealous of him. In their bitterness and rage, Joseph was sold into slavery in Egypt. And God used this seemingly hopeless situation to change the course of history. Continue Reading

Jacob and Esau: Deception, Bitterness, and the Sovereignty of God | alyssajhoward.com

Jacob and Esau: Deception, Bitterness, and the Sovereignty of God

Jacob and Esau were the first twins mentioned in the Bible. Sons of Isaac and Rebekah, these two came into the world after Isaac prayed asking God to give his barren wife a child. If you remember, Isaac’s mother was barren too. She was 90 years old when she finally conceived Isaac. So this was a story all too familiar for Isaac. But God gave him two sons. In fact, Genesis 25:23 describes them as “two nations.” Esau would be born first, but it would be Jacob who would be chosen by God to carry on the bloodline of Jesus. The older shall serve the younger… Continue Reading

3 Life Lessons About God and His Love from Isaac and Rebekah

One of my favorite Old Testament Bible stories is one of true love. Isaac and Rebekah were destined to be together, and their story was anything but ordinary. Perhaps I love this story because I’m a romantic at heart. I envision what it must have been like for Rebekah and leave her family home to journey towards a husband she had never met. Her courage, bravery, and faith in God’s promise are truly inspiring. But what is even more inspiring is how God moved in His love through it all. Continue Reading

3 Powerful Reasons Why the Test of Abraham Is Significant | alyssajhowardcom

3 Powerful Reasons Why the Test of Abraham Is Significant

Most of us have heard the story. In his old age, Abraham is given a son named Isaac. But God asks Abraham to do the unthinkable… to sacrifice this son on an altar. Some would say this test of Abraham was mean and cruel. Others would suggest that God had a divine purpose in asking Abraham to do such a thing. But what we must remember as Christians today is that every story found in Scripture is significant.

After all, it was Jesus who said that all Scripture indeed pointed to Him. (John 5:39) Continue Reading

4 Ways That the Suffering of Job Points Us to Jesus | alyssajhoward.com

4 Ways That the Suffering of Job Points Us to Jesus

The book of Job tells the story of a man who lost everything. And in the midst of his suffering, he never gave up his faith in God. It’s a story that most of us have at least heard bits and pieces of… even outside of the church. At first glance, it can seem like a dark and intense book of poetry. But the suffering of Job has a lot to say to us as Believers today. In fact, it points to Christ in some very interesting ways. Continue Reading

How God Brought Us from the Tower of Babel to the Day of Pentecost | alyssajhoward.com

How God Brought Us from the Tower of Babel to the Day of Pentecost

As a child, I remember hearing the Old Testament story about the Tower of Babel. But to be honest, it often baffled me. On the surface, it seemed like a simple story of how God scattered people across the whole earth and gave them different languages. But when I actually took the time to think about it, I simply couldn’t relate. Did these men really think they could build a tower to God?

Fast forward to the Day of Pentecost. In Acts 2, we are told that the gift of the Holy Spirit had arrived causing the people to speak each other’s languages. And while these stories may seem unrelated, the issue of language strangely connects them. In one story, language separates the people. And in the other… it connects them. Continue Reading

Noah: 3 Truths About His Story That May Surprise You | alyssajhoward.com

Noah: 3 Truths About His Story That May Surprise You

Most of us have heard of a man named Noah. He was a righteous man of God at a time when the world was at its worst. In fact, the world was so evil that God saw it fitting to start over. He was saddened by His creation so much so that He sent a world-wide flood to destroy it. Only Noah and His family were spared. Continue Reading

4 Reasons Why Studying the Old Testament is Crucial to Our Faith

I love the stories found in the Old Testament. Growing up, I remember learning all about Noah and the flood, Jonah and the whale, David and Goliath, and Daniel in the lions’ den. But while the pages of the Old Testament are filled with courageous stories that inspire us to trust God in all things, there are also some difficult aspects to consider. The Old Testament contains the Law of Moses, biblical prophecy, and many difficult (and often controversial) passages. So as a child, my Bible studies skipped over a lot of these elements. I studied the individual stories, but the controversial pieces were kept to a minimum.

The problem with studying the Old Testament the way I did as a child is that it feels very disconnected. How do these men and women relate to one another? How do they relate to God’s Law and covenants? And most importantly, how do they relate to Jesus and our salvation? Continue Reading

Let There Be Light: The Day Darkness Lost the War | alyssajhoward.com

Let There Be Light: The Day Darkness Lost the War

Let there be light… When creating the world, God spoke light into this world. But in one moment, everything changed. Man ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, and as a result, death and darkness would reign. But God had a plan… one that He put into motion in the Garden of Eden. He would restore the light through His promised Messiah. And everything that happened as result of sin, would be overturned. Continue Reading

In the Beginning... What Was the Result of Our Sin? | alyssajhoward.com

In the Beginning… What Was the Result of Our Sin?

In the beginning… God created the world and everything in it. He placed Adam and Eve in a spectacularly perfect garden and gave them one simple rule. Don’t eat from the forbidden tree. Most of us know the story well. The serpent arrives on the scene and challenges Eve to question God. In those infamous moments, the first two humans make a decision that would change everything for all of mankind. The result of our sin on that fateful day would have dire consequences… consequences that only a Savior could fix. Continue Reading