Use these 15 Bible verses to encourage fellow believers and grow in your own faith! Encouragement is vital for spiritual growth–we grow by being encouraged and by encouraging others. Don’t miss these verses and share them with a friend who needs uplifting today.
Meaning of the Word “Encouragement” in the New Testament
“Oikodomē” is the Greek New Testament word for encourage it means the act of building, building up, edifying, edification; the act of one who promotes another’s growth in Christian wisdom, piety, happiness, holiness; or a building of any kind. (Strong’s Concordance)
I love the word picture of this architectural term! Encouragement is brick by brick, word by word, action by action building towards Jesus. Not only building up, but building into— encouragement builds each follower of Christ into a home, both a dwelling place for God Himself and a location for a fallen world to encounter a risen Jesus.
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Meaning of the Word “Encouragement” in the Old Testament
The Hebrew word in the Old Testament for encouragement is “ḥāzaq” meaning to strengthen, prevail, harden, be strong, become strong, be courageous, be firm, grow firm, be resolute, be sore. (Strong’s Concordance) This is a super common word in the Bible, but it’s more often interpreted as a form of strong and only translated nine times as our English word encourage.
While it’s different than the Greek word used in the New Testament, it is unique in the idea of giving strength to or repairing. When we encourage we are infusing strength, repairing, and holding up our fellow Christ followers.
(I have marked this word in the Old Testament Bible verses with an *asterisk* so you can see how “ḥāzaq” is used in each verse.)
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Be on the lookout for both forms of the New and Old Testament words for “encourage” as you read through these Bible verses about encouragement.
15 Bible Verse to Encourage One Another
1. 1 Thessalonians 5:11 — Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.
This verse commands Christians to continue to encourage and lift up fellow followers of Jesus. The church of Thessalonians was already doing this and Paul reminds them to not stop, but keep on encouraging each other.
2. Ephesians 4:29 — Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.
This verse provides a helpful key to the command of 1 Thessalonians to encourage one another. You find yourself asking,
“But what is encouragement? Is it just a thumbs up or fist bump when your neighbor does a good job?”
Encouragement is defined in this verse as “building others up–it’s important our words benefit and add value to those who hear them.
3. 1 Peter 2:4-5 — As you come to him, the living Stone—rejected by humans but chosen by God and precious to him— you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
Our relationship with God is a source of constant encouragement to believers as we live in the world while also becoming more and more like Jesus everyday.
4. Joshua 1:9 — Have I not commanded you? Be strong* and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.
This is one of my favorite, most encouraging promises of God! God promises to infuse us with courage through His presence. En-courage, by putting His courage in us through His presence.
5. Hebrews 3:13 — But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.
Encouragement can be an antidote for the deceitful nature of sin and the hardening of our hearts to God. It also reminds us we need to receive and give encouragement often!
6. Psalm 27: 14 — I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong* and take heart and wait for the Lord.
It takes strength and courage keep expecting God when it doesn’t seem like He is showing up like we think He should. Reminding ourselves of God’s goodness helps us be encouraged as we wait.
7. Hebrews 10:24-25 — And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
Christians are to be constantly pushing each other to grow in their love and service to Christ. The church is the local gathering of believers that enacts this mission on earth, but there are lots of other ways fellow believers can gather together and encourage each other–both online and in person.
8. 1 Thessalonians 4:18 — Therefore encourage one another with these words.
When we look at this verse in its expanded context in the book of Thessalonians we see that Christ’s return and our eternal life with Him is to be a source of uplift and joy to us in our walk with God.
9. Philippians 2:3-4 — Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.
When we value others we seek to encourage and build them up, rather than tear down through ambition or selfishly thinking too much of ourselves.
10. Colossians 3:1-2 — Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.
Practically speaking, encouragement resets our hearts and minds toward spiritual things and helps us not to get caught up in silly arguments or divisive issues.
11. Isaiah 41:13 — For I am the Lord your God who takes hold* of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you.
God has you firmly in His grip and He’s not letting go. You can let go of fear because He is ready and willing to help!
12. Ezekiel 34:15 — I myself will tend my sheep and have them lie down, declares the Sovereign Lord. I will search for the lost and bring back the strays. I will bind up the injured and strengthen* the weak, but the sleek and the strong I will destroy. I will shepherd the flock with justice.
If you feel like the underdog, if you feel lost or behind–God is promising to strengthen and encourage you. You can entrust the justice of your life to Him.
13. John 14:27 — Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
Jesus has given you supernatural peace. In John 14-17, you can read all of Jesus’ last conversation with His disciples–it is a great place to go for encouragement and peace.
14. Romans 14:19 — Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification.
Christians have amazing freedom in Christ! Two great questions to ask yourself to evaluate whether you are helping or hurting is to honestly ask:
- “Will this lead to peace?”
- “Will this build up my fellow Christ-follower?”
15. Ephesians 4:15-16 — Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.
This verse beautifully illustrates how followers can speak truthful and loving encouragement and promote growth in each other to the absolute glory of God.
I hope this list of Bible verse encourages your heart as a Christ follower and you in turn can use them to encourage someone else! God’s Word is rich in promises and encouragement for His children!
If you want to be encouraged with more Promises of God check out my 30 Days to Claiming the Promises of God Bible study!