Bible Verses for Making Decisions
Today we’ll be talking about some of the best Bible verses and Christian quotes that you can use to guide you in your decision-making. We make tens of thousands of decisions in a day which begs the question: how can we ensure that we’re making the right decisions?
1. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” – Proverbs 3:5-6 (NIV)
Far too often, we trust in our own hearts. We let our heart’s desires lead us down paths that result in sin and destruction. Yet what Solomon is telling us here in Proverbs is to rather trust in the LORD with all of our hearts and to not trust in our own understanding.
This would have been groundbreaking for the Israelites in the time of Solomon considering the fact that the very thing that Israel always struggled with was trusting in their own hearts and motives over God’s. They thought that they knew best and it always led them down the wrong paths to judgement.
Jeremiah 17:9 says, “The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?” (NIV)
We cannot trust our own hearts and the decisions which come out of them. Rather, we must lean on the Lord’s understanding instead of our own in all things and He will make our paths straight. He will make our decision-making blessed when we trust in Him rather than in ourselves.
2. “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” – James 1:5 (NIV)
If we are seeking wisdom in our decision-making, James makes it quite simple for us. He tells us to just ask God for wisdom and we will receive it. After all, did Solomon not simply ask God for wisdom and it was given to him in great measure?
Sometimes wisdom isn’t revealed to us because we don’t ask for it. Or, as James covers in chapter 4 of his book, we ask with the wrong intentions and the wrong purpose in mind. If you are looking for wisdom in order to make good decisions that honor the Lord in all that you do, ask Him for it and be honest with Him about it.
In Matthew 7:11, Jesus says, “If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!” (NIV)
Sometimes we doubt that God knows what is good for us. We don’t ask Him to fulfill His will because we are scared of what may come out of it. Yet Jesus tells us, our Heavenly Father knows how to give good gifts to those who ask Him.
When you are seeking wisdom for your decision-making, simply talk to the Lord and ask Him to give it to you with the right intentions and listen to what He says.
If you want to learn more about praying and how to place your requests before God, you can read this article about prayer.
3. “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” – 2 Timothy 3:16-17 (NIV)
Sometimes when we are looking for help in making decisions, we forget that God has already given us a perfect manual for how to live our lives. In 2 Timothy, Paul is writing to Timothy to encourage him as a leader and to build him up in Paul’s absence. Anyone who has ever been in the position of a leader can tell you that it isn’t easy!
Being a leader means making a lot of tough decisions on behalf of an entire group of people. If anyone needed help and guidance in making decisions, it was Timothy at this time.
Yet what does Paul point him to? He points Timothy back to the Scriptures, for they are the word of the Lord. What else could possibly bring more wisdom and guidance in making good and God-honoring decisions?
Hebrews 4:12 says, “For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” (NIV)
The Bible is not just a book that sits on our nightstands and collects dust. It is the living eternal Word of God that holds infinite amounts of biblical wisdom in its passages that is sitting there waiting for us to unpack.
Could we ever hope for a better source of wisdom for making decisions than the very words which are within Scripture?
When you are in the process of making decisions, never forget to consult the Word of God as your primary source of wisdom. If you make a decision that is in line with what Scripture says, you know that you are making a good decision.
Read this other article that I wrote, If you want to know more about knowing God through His Word.
4. “To answer before listening – that is folly and shame.” – Proverbs 18:13 (NIV)
Especially in the world that we live in today, it can be easy to want to make split-second decisions. We often make decisions off the top of our heads before we even take into account all of the information at our disposal. Solomon in his wisdom tells us here in Proverbs that this style of living is foolish and shameful.
True wisdom takes thought, effort, and intentionality to come to fruition. We must take the time when making decisions to witness what God is telling us before we go making a decision based on what our hearts say.
Likewise, in Proverbs 13:16, Solomon says, “All who are prudent act with knowledge, but fools expose their folly.” (NIV)
We must be people of knowledge and thought before we act. Going with what has been said previously, when making big decisions we have to take into account what Scripture says, what God is saying to us, and what logically makes sense.
The people of God should not act out of emotion but rather out of reason and out of God’s guidance. When you make decisions in your life, think before you act. Do not give an answer before you hear what God is saying to you.
If you want to learn more check out this article about spending personal time with God.
5. “What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul?” – Matthew 16:26 (NIV)
Sometimes I think a question that we miss when making decisions is: is this decision good for my soul? Is this decision good for my heart? It’s far too easy to get so caught up in the culture that we live in of gaining things that we forget about how it affects us and our souls.
In Proverbs 4:23, Solomon says, “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” (NIV)
How are your decisions affecting your heart and soul? Are they causing damage to them that may be irreparable? Or are they pointing your heart and soul back to God and to Christ? Are they keeping your heart pure?
If you’ve made some decisions that have damaged your heart, check out this article: https://www.christianwalls.com/blogs/news/22-bible-verses-for-a-broken-heart
6. “But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.” – Joshua 24:15 (NIV)
Every single day, we face this choice that Joshua placed before the Israelites. The Israelites kept falling into idolatry and running away from God. Joshua saw this and told them that they had to choose one or the other.
Every day, we face the choice between idols that we have made and the real God that sits on the throne of heaven. We don’t make that choice with one big choice, we make it through each and every one of the decisions we make throughout the day. Even Jesus was tempted with this when He spent time in the wilderness after His baptism.
Matthew 4:8-11 says, “Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. ‘All this I will give you,’ he said, ‘if you will bow down and worship me.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Away from me, Satan! For it is written: “Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.”’ Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him.” (NIV).
When you’re making decisions, it’s a good rule of thumb to measure whether those decisions are to honor the Lord or to honor an idol that you have set up in your life. Think about this the next time you make a decision. Who are you being faithful to with that decision?
7. “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.” – Proverbs 1:7 (NIV)
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge. This isn’t a cowering in the corner kind of fear, but rather a fear of reverence. It is a fear that understands who you are in comparison to who God is. It is a fear that leads us to awe in light of God’s glory. Solomon tells us that this kind of fear is the beginning of strong wisdom in decision-making.
In Isaiah 55:9, God says, “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” (NIV)
We must always remember where God fits in when we are making decisions. If we want to make good decisions, understanding who we are in relation to who God is happens to be a big key in the process. God’s ways and thoughts are much higher than ours so how could we not consult Him and ask Him for help when we are making decisions?
8. “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 4:6-7 (NIV)
It’s important to note here that Paul most likely penned these verses on the floor of a prison cell. Paul went through a lot in his day; likely more than any of us will ever go through. Needless to say, he of all people knew how to find peace and comfort with God.
Many times when we make decisions, we fight with finding that peace that we made the right decision. Yet here, Paul has given us the key. The secret (which isn’t so secret) is to submit your decisions and requests before God and He will grant you peace.
In Matthew 11:28, Jesus invites us by saying, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” (NIV)
Jesus can bring us rest and peace when we are making tough decisions. We just have to go about it the right way and submit our thoughts and requests before the Lord. He will bring us peace that surpasses all understanding.
9. “Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes.” – Psalm 37:7 (NIV)
It is no secret that we live in a world of instant gratification. We tend to want what we want and we want it now. The same goes for making decisions. We want answers from God about what we should do and we want them now!
Yet the Bible calls us to a different kind of thinking. This verse in Psalms calls us to wait on the Lord and to rest in Him as we wait. It also calls us to ignore what other people are doing and to focus on what God is doing.
Psalm 46:10 tells us, “He says, ‘Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.’” (NIV)
Sometimes we just get so wrapped up in trying to make a decision that we forget to listen to God, the One who will be exalted regardless of what happens. If you are in the process of making a decision, just take some time to be still and listen to God. What do you feel Him telling you?
10. “Walk with the wise and become wise, for a companion of fools suffers harm.” – Proverbs 13:20 (NIV)
The last verse we’re going to look at about making decisions has to do with who you spend time with and who you take advice from. It’s important to ask for advice from people, but it’s even more important that those people are wise and godly.
Sometimes we ask people for advice not because we trust them to give good advice, but because we know that they’ll agree with our thinking. Instead, be careful to walk with wise and godly people who can truly discern the will of God and help you make a good decision.
Proverbs 27:17 says, “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” (NIV)
Who are you letting sharpen you and what are you letting them sharpen you with? Choose wisely who you let advise you and affect your making of decisions.
Overall, making a good and wise decision is a difficult thing to do. It takes time, thought, effort, and intentionality to truly discern what it is that God is calling you to do. Yet in the end, it is worth it beyond words. Find wisdom and rest in the person of God and He will make your paths straight.