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In the competitive world that we live in, it’s not unusual to see people “doing what they have to do” to get ahead.
Many in our society focus on whose light shines the brightest and who is standing the tallest. Desiring to appear better than anyone else and be seen, recognized, and admired.
But when we practice humility, we are not self-promoting. Instead, we're recognizing and being comfortable in our own skin while also embracing the greatness found in others. When humble people receive a promotion on the job, they take others with them, giving them a place to shine and stand tall.
They recognize their shortcomings and surround themselves with others who can compensate for their lack.
Humility embraces community and achieving great things together with others. It’s knowing that we need others, and it is also endorsed by God, the creator Himself, who we need the most.
Holy scripture has much to say about practicing humility. And in the Bible verses ahead, you'll be encouraged to purposefully make humility a regular practice.
What is Humility?
“Humility is not thinking less of yourself; it's thinking of yourself less.” – C.S. Lewis.
Genuine humility is the state of being humble. It is not thinking of oneself higher than we should. It is an underrated virtue.
We need to practice humility because it's not inherently built into the makeup of who we are.
To be blunt, being humble is hard! Because we love to feel a sense of pride and importance, which is a beautiful feeling. But we must learn to balance it so pride doesn't take over.
Humility comes from a place of security, while pride flows through those who are insecure. The following are a few examples of walking in humility:
What Does It Mean to Practice Humility?
When we practice humility, it’s like learning to practice anything else. At first, we may not be particularly good at it, but with time, it becomes more natural, and we're much better than we used to be.
Choosing to practice humility isn’t always easy. It is like choosing to work out and eat healthy. We sometimes make ourselves do it, even when we don't want to, because we see the great benefits that come from it.
The incredible feeling of accomplishment you receive after a great run or workout session is similar to the feeling you receive when you practice humility regularly.
With pride being so common, humility has to become a practice so it can ultimately become a way of life. Through meditating on and applying the wisdom found in the verses of scripture, we can learn to realize the power and grace that come with humility.
Life gives us plenty of opportunities to walk in humility. I spent years as a store set-up supervisor for a retail company. I oversaw over 60 multi-million-dollar projects in my time there.
Later, I transitioned from that position and decided to return to college. So, I took a part-time job as a worker for a different retail company.
This time, I worked the same type of job but was the “low man on the totem pole.” My supervisor was inexperienced and made many decisions that caused us to do twice the work and accomplish half as much.
I was really grieved about the situation. The prideful part of me felt I was too good to do the job. However, I sought wisdom from the scriptures so I could practice humility.
Afterward, I went to my supervisor secretly and made suggestions, explaining that I had experience in this line of work. She didn't appear to care about what I was saying for a while, but one day, I noticed she was implementing all of my suggestions.
In this situation, humility became a chain reaction. I talked to my supervisor off to the side, in secret. Then, she showed great humility and implemented my ideas rather than dismissing them.
She even contacted her boss and talked to him at length about me. He later took a flight to visit me and offered me a supervisory role within the corporation.
Maybe you can relate to times when humility was the best course of action in your life and opened a door for greater opportunities.
As you read and meditate on the following 25 bible verses about humility, I know you will find confirmation, truth, and encouragement to keep choosing humility, even when it may be hard to do.
It’s essential to our personal development and growth.
25 Important Bible Verses About Practicing Humility
1.“Live a life worthy of the calling to which you have been called [that is, to live a life that exhibits godly character, moral courage, personal integrity, and mature behavior—a life that expresses gratitude to God for your salvation], 2 with all humility [forsaking self-righteousness], and gentleness [maintaining self-control], with patience, bearing with one another in [unselfish] love.” – Ephesians 4:1-2
2. “When pride comes [boiling up with an arrogant attitude of self-importance], then come dishonor and shame, but with the humble [the teachable who have been chiseled by trial and who have learned to walk humbly with God] there is wisdom and soundness of mind.” – Proverbs 11:2
3. “So, as God’s own chosen people, who are holy [set apart, sanctified for His purpose] and well-beloved [by God Himself], put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience [which has the power to endure whatever injustice or unpleasantness comes, with good temper];” – Colossians 3:2
4. “Live in harmony with one another; do not be haughty [conceited, self-important, exclusive], but associate with humble people [those with a realistic self-view]. Do not overestimate yourself.” – Romans 12:16
Live in harmony with one another; do not be haughty [conceited, self-important, exclusive], but associate with humble people [those with a realistic self-view]. Do not overestimate yourself.” – Romans 12:16
5. “Humble yourselves [with an attitude of repentance and insignificance] in the presence of the Lord, and He will exalt you [He will lift you up, He will give you purpose].” – James 4:10
6. “Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit [through factional motives, or strife], but with [an attitude of] humility [being neither arrogant nor self-righteous], regard others as more important than yourselves.” – Philippians 2:3
7. “A man’s pride and sense of self-importance will bring him down, but he who has a humble spirit will obtain honor.” – Proverbs 29:23
8. “The reward of humility [that is, having a realistic view of one’s importance] and the [reverent, worshipful] fear of the Lord is riches, honor, and life.” – Proverbs 22:4
9. “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me [following Me as My disciple], for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest (renewal, blessed quiet) for your souls. 30 For My yoke is easy [to bear], and My burden is light.” – Matthew 11:29-30
10. “So whenever you give to the poor and do acts of kindness, do not blow a trumpet before you [to advertise it], as the hypocrites do [like actors acting out a role] in the synagogues and in the streets, so that they may be honored and recognized and praised by men. I assure you and most solemnly say to you, they [already] have their reward in full.” – Matthew 6:2
11. “The [reverent] fear of the Lord [that is, worshiping Him and regarding Him as truly awesome] is the instruction for wisdom [its starting point and its essence]; and before honor comes humility.” – Proverbs 15:33
12. “For you, my brothers, were called to freedom; only do not let your freedom become an opportunity for the sinful nature (worldliness, selfishness), but through love serve and seek the best for one another.” – Galatians 5:13
For you, my brothers, were called to freedom; only do not let your freedom become an opportunity for the sinful nature (worldliness, selfishness), but through love serve and seek the best for one another.” – Galatians 5:13
13. “And He told them, “Whoever welcomes this child in My name welcomes Me, and whoever welcomes Me [also] welcomes Him who sent Me; for the one who is least among all of you [that is, the one who is genuinely humble—the one with a realistic self-view]—he is the one who is [truly] great.” – Luke 9:48
14. “Good and upright is the Lord; therefore, He instructs sinners in the way. 9 He leads the humble in justice, and He teaches the humble His way.” – Psalm. 25:8-9
15. “For the Lord takes pleasure in His people; he will beautify the humble with salvation.” – Psalms 149:4
16. “Who among you is wise and intelligent? Let him, by his good conduct, show his [good] deeds with the gentleness and humility of true wisdom. – James 3:13
17. “Let the brother in humble circumstances glory in his high position [as a born-again believer, called to the true riches and to be an heir of God]; 10 and the rich man is to glory in being humbled [by trials revealing human frailty, knowing true riches are found in the grace of God], for like the flower of the grass he will pass away.” – James 1:9-10
18. “Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise and exalt and honor the King of heaven, for all His works are true and faithful, and His ways are just, and He is able to humiliate and humble those who walk in [self-centered, self-righteous] pride.” – Daniel 4:37
19. “Your adornment must not be merely external—with interweaving and elaborate knotting of the hair, and wearing gold jewelry, or [being superficially preoccupied with] dressing in expensive clothes; 4 but let it be [the inner beauty of] the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality and unfading charm of a gentle and peaceful spirit, [one that is calm and self-controlled, not overanxious, but serene and spiritually mature] which is very precious in the sight of God.” – 1st Peter 3:3-4
Your adornment must not be merely external—with interweaving and elaborate knotting of the hair, and wearing gold jewelry, or [being superficially preoccupied with] dressing in expensive clothes; 4 but let it be [the inner beauty of] the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality and unfading charm of a gentle and peaceful spirit, [one that is calm and self-controlled, not overanxious, but serene and spiritually mature] which is very precious in the sight of God.” – 1st Peter 3:3-4
20. “For by the grace [of God] given to me I say to every one of you not to think more highly of himself [and of his importance and ability] than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgment, as God has apportioned to each a degree of faith [and a purpose designed for service].” – Romans 12:3
21. “Sitting down [to teach], He called the twelve [disciples] and said to them, “If anyone wants to be first, he must be last of all [in importance] and a servant of all.” – Mark 9:35
22. “He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you except to be just, and to love [and to diligently practice] kindness (compassion), and to walk humbly with your God [setting aside any overblown sense of importance or self-righteousness]?” – Micah 6:8
23. “Though He scoffs at the scoffers and scorns the scorners, yet He gives His grace [His undeserved favor] to the humble [those who give up self-importance].” – Proverbs 3:34
24.“Likewise, you younger men [of lesser rank and experience], be subject to your elders [seek their counsel]; and all of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another [tie on the servant’s apron], for God is opposed to the proud [the disdainful, the presumptuous, and He defeats them], but He gives grace to the humble. 6 Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God [set aside self-righteous pride], so that He may exalt you [to a place of honor in His service] at the appropriate time.” – 1st Peter 5:5-6
25. “For the high and exalted One He who inhabits eternity, Whose name is Holy says this, “I dwell on the high and holy place, but also with the contrite and humble in spirit in order to revive the spirit of the humble and to revive the heart of the contrite [overcome with sorrow for sin].” – Isaiah 57:15
Final Thoughts on Bible Verses About Practicing Humility
Practicing humility doesn’t dismiss having a sense of pride and self-confidence. It’s nice and refreshing, like water that washes up on the beach. It is also selfless so others can find enjoyment in it as well.
Like water on the banks of a seashore, humility keeps pride back, and it only comes up so far with the tide, but then it will slowly roll back.
However, if we don’t practice humility, we can become destructive, like a hurricane or a tsunami. It gets a ton of attention from everywhere, but it's well-known for the destruction that it leaves behind.
Having a lack of humility destroys our families and relationships. It gives us the feeling that we must appear more prominent and better than anyone else.
Then we feel we must always have the last word, we’re always right in disagreements, and we value being right over our relationships.
Without humility, great careers are lost, communities are torn apart, and corporations shut their doors.
It's behind all the dissension that we find in the world today. So may we religiously study and adhere to the wisdom found in these bible verses and choose to practice humility.
And if you're looking for more bible verses which can help your personal growth, be sure to check out these blog posts:
- 21 Bible Verses About Having Self-Control in Your Life
- 35 Bible Verses About the Importance of Self-Love
- 25 Bible Verses About Having Courage During Tough Times