What Does Take Heart Mean In The Bible

What does ‘take heart’ mean in the Bible? In the simplest terms, ‘take heart’ is a phrase used to encourage and console. It is a reminder for humans to have faith and not give up, as God is always with us. It is a statement of comfort, assurance and strength.

The phrase appears multiple times in the Bible, from the New Testament to the Old Testament. It is found in Deuteronomy 31:6, Psalm 27:14, 56:3-4, and 95:7 in the King James Version. Additionally, it is also found in Hebrews 10:23 and Matthew 13:43. Across these verses, the phrase ‘take heart’ appears in conjunction with the words “be strong,” “fear not” and “lift up” to infuse an uplifting message.

Theologically speaking, Christians believe that Jesus is the source of our strength, courage and faith. Therefore, when we take heart in His word, we can find the strength to fight through the toughest of times – whether it’s navigating through emotional storms, or physical, moral or financial difficulties. There is a power in the phrase ‘take heart,’ as it encourages us to put our faith in what the Bible says and strive to be courageous in the face of despair.

Psychologically, ‘take heart’ unlocks a sense of security and hope. Cognitive-behavioral therapists and psychologists view the phrase as a form of cognitive restructuring – or thought replacement – that can help to change one’s mood, emotions and behavior in a positive direction. It encourages self-care and self-acceptance, helping individuals to refocus on what truly matters and experience inner peace.

Further, the phrase ‘take heart’ holds significant spiritual meaning. It speaks to the infinite power of faith and encourages us to connect with God’s loving grace in every situation – whether through praise and worship, contemplation, prayer or other spiritual activities. It can be seen as a reminder of God’s mighty and unconditional love that always helps us ascend.

The Power of the Gospel

The Bible is the source of inspiration and solace for millions around the world. For Christians, the power of ‘take heart’ brings great meaning and profound depths to the sustainment and encouragement of one’s faith. In Galatians 5:1, for instance, the phrase “stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free” is an exhortation to set aside our earthly limitations and put our faith in Christ’s unfailing love.

The call of the gospel is to remain vigilant in our faith and take heart in His promises no matter what we face. Christ wants His followers to persevere, even in the face of troubles, because He knows that our ultimate joy comes not from external circumstances but from the indwelling of His Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). This underscores the timeless truth that the joy of the Lord is our strength (Nehemiah 8:10).

The power of the gospel is an essential part of reclaiming our hope and endurance. It is a reminder that God is ever-present in our lives, and when we take heart in His word, He can give us clarity and direction while we journey through the unknown.

Examples of Taking Heart

There are hundreds of examples throughout the Bible of how God’s people took heart in His word and encouraged themselves and others to stay steadfast in their faith. On the night before He was betrayed, Jesus showed his famous ‘Take Heart’ when He addressed his disciples (John 16:33). He knew that their devotion and trust could only be truly realized when they put their entire hearts in Him. In 2 Chronicles 15:7, King Asa stirred up the courage of the people by reminding them to trust in the Lord and take heart.

In the New Testament books of Acts and Romans, the disciples experienced moments of extreme trial and tribulation, such as imprisonment and shipwreck. During their times of difficulty, their faith in God was put to the test. However, they chose to take heart in the Lord, maintain their joy and carry on, knowing that He had a greater plan for them. Similarly, the apostle Paul experienced many hardships, such as being beaten and imprisoned, yet he persisted in faith because he was able to take heart in God’s Scripture and promises.

Life Application

Outside of the Bible, ‘Take Heart’ can be a valuable practice to help us keep our chins high in difficult times and be encouraged by faith. We can take heart by keeping our eyes on the Lord, reminding ourselves of His promises, worshipping Him and taking time to reflect on all the good He has done in our lives, even if only momentary. We can surround ourselves with supportive people who will encourage and remind us to take heart, and practice self-care such as prayer, meditation and journaling to ground ourselves in the sacred.

When our spirits are broken and we are faced with what feels like insurmountable challenges, we can take heart in knowing there is a God who cannot be moved, and that we are never alone. As Psalm 27:14 says, be strong, take heart, and wait for the Lord. With Him, there is always hope, joy and light.

The Bigger Picture: Beyond Taking Heart

We all need encouragement and hope, specially during tough times. Taking heart can ultimately lead us to a deeper peace and assurance of our relationship with God. But it is also important to move beyond “taking heart” and start to live it—faith without works is dead (James 2:17). We should use the strength we find in the Lord to take action and satisfy the needs of others.

Rather than relying solely on small phrases of encouragement, we should seek to go deeper into the practice of authentic faith. Our faith requires proaction, obedience and endurance—and those qualities should be driven by action and not just words of hope. As we progress into this level of faith, we discover what it truly means to have a relationship with God and experience the true joy and freedom of being in His presence.

Transforming Hardships into Opportunities

God not only gives us the strength to take heart, He also offers the opportunity for us to use our tribulations as spiritual tools. It is in hard times that we often turn to God in desperation and allow Him to transform us from the inside out. Hardships should be seen as catalysts for growth and a way to build trust in our Creator, rather than something to fear or dread.

Paul’s words in 2 Corinthians 5:7 call us to “walk by faith and not by sight” and remember that our future is secure in the Lord. We can use our difficulties as an opportunity to grow closer to God – to understand His power and faithfulness – and remember how the trials we face are temporary but the peace and joy He offers us is everlasting.

Remembering God’s Gentle Presence

God’s presence is so gentle and tender that many times we are not even aware that He is near. He is closer to us than we perceive, and is just waiting for our hearts to be open to Him. In Psalm 37:39-40 it says: Yet the Lord’s faithful love endures forever toward those who fear him. His salvation extends to the children’s children of those who keep his covenant and remember to obey his precepts.

The Lord hears our prayers, is with us in our struggles and will never abandon us. When we remain open to Him, our faith is transformed and we are able to take heart and inhabit a deeper understanding of who He is. He doesn’t just console us in moments of distress, He also surrounds us with justice, mercy and protection. Therefore, we can never have too much ‘Take Heart’ in our lives.

Marcos Reyna is a Christian author and speaker. He is dedicated to helping create disciples of Christ through spreading the power of the gospel to others. He has written several books and articles on a variety of theological topics, including matters of faith, worship, biblical studies, practical ethics, and social justice. A trained theologian and devotee of spiritual writing, Marcos has a mission to spread Christian love everywhere. He lives with his family in Nashville, TN where he spends his days encouraging others to seek Christ's grace in all things.

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