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40 Bible Quotes for Graduates from Paul's Letters

MsDora, a former teacher and Christian counselor, is an avid Bible student and loves to compile user-friendly Bible quotes by topic.

Paul’s autobiography informs us that he was “born in Tarsus, a city in Cilicia . . . brought up and educated here in Jerusalem under Gamaliel . . . carefully trained in our Jewish laws and customs” (Acts 22:3). He is credited with the authorship of 13 of the 27 books in the New Testament. His books are all letters, including 3 personal ones written to Timothy and Titus whom he mentored in ministry.

Paul Barnett, ancient historian, New Testament scholar and seminary professor writes, “Paul’s numerous letters reveal a man of high intellect, a luminous writing ability and an encyclopedic knowledge of the Greek Bible.” Therefore, Paul is well qualified to address graduates.

The following quotes from the New Living Translation are all appropriate in a graduation speech. They are subdivided as Paul might have focused on (1) the graduation celebration, (2) counsel for those entering the workforce, (3) specific counsel for those called to church ministry, his area of passion, and (4) exhortation for all to continue pursuing their purpose.

I. Celebrating the Achievement

1. "Thank [God] for all he has done." (Philippians 4:6)

2. "May you be filled with joy, always thanking the Father." (Colossians 1: 11, 12)

3. "Be happy with those who are happy." (Romans 12: 15)

4. "God has put the body together. . . and if one part is honored, all the parts are glad." (1 Corinthians 12: 24, 26)

5. "I take great pride in you." (2 Corinthians 7:4)

6. "Yes, you should rejoice, and I . . . share your joy." (Philippians 2: 18)

7. "God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished." (Philippians 1: 6)

8. "Fought the good fight . . . finished the race . . . remained faithful." (2 Timothy 4:7)

9. "Yet I dare not boast about anything except what Christ has done through me." (Romans 15:18)

10. "Despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us." (Romans 8:37)

Celebrate the achievement.

Celebrate the achievement.

II. Entering the Workforce

11. "Work with enthusiasm, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people." (Ephesians 6:7)

12. "Never be lazy, but work hard." (Romans 12:11)

13. "Would you like to live without fear of the authorities? Do what is right, and they will honor you." (Romans 13:3)

14. "Pay your taxes, too, for these same reasons. For government workers need to be paid." (Romans 13:6)

15. "Keep your conscience clear." (1 Timothy 1:19)

16. "Throw yourself into your tasks so that everyone will see your progress." (1 Timothy 4:15)

17. "Never speak harshly to an older man, but appeal to him respectfully as you would to your own father. Talk to younger men as you would to your own brothers. (1 Timothy 5: 1)

18. "Treat older women as you would your mother, and treat younger women with all purity as you would your own sisters." (1 Timothy 5: 2)

19. "Avoid godless, foolish discussions with those who oppose you with their so-called knowledge." (1 Timothy 6:20)

20. "For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline." (2 Timothy 1:7)

Paul: Patiently correct, rebuke, and encourage your people with good teaching.

Paul: Patiently correct, rebuke, and encourage your people with good teaching.

III. Ministering to the Church

If someone aspires to be a church leader, he desires an honorable position. . . So he must:

21. "Manage his own family well, having children who respect and obey him. For if a man cannot manage his own household, how can he take care of God’s church?" (1 Timothy 3: 1, 5).

22. "Not quarrel but must be kind to everyone, be able to teach, and be patient with difficult people." (2 Timothy 2:24)

23. "Preach the word of God. Be prepared, whether the time is favorable or not. Patiently correct, rebuke, and encourage your people with good teaching." (2 Timothy 4:2)

24. "Live a blameless life. He must not be arrogant or quick-tempered; he must not be a heavy drinker, violent, or dishonest with money." (Titus 1:7)

25. "Have a strong belief in the trustworthy message he was taught; then he will be able to encourage others with wholesome teaching and show those who oppose it where they are wrong." (Titus 1:9)

26. "Teach the older men to exercise self-control, to be worthy of respect, and to live wisely." (Titus 2:2)

27. "Teach the older women to live in a way that honors God. . . to train the younger women to love their husbands and their children." (Titus 2:3, 4)

28. "Encourage the young men to live wisely. And you yourself must be an example to them by doing good works of every kind." (Titus 2:6)

29. "Teach these things and encourage the believers to do them. . . to correct them when necessary, so don’t let anyone disregard what you say." (Titus 2:15)

30. "Remind the believers to submit to the government and its officers." Titus 3:1)

IV. Pursuing Purpose

31. "Don’t you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win!" (1 Corinthians 9:24)

32. "So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing."(1 Corinthians 9:26)

33. "Physical training is good, but training for godliness is much better, promising benefits in this life and in the life to come." (1 Timothy 4:8)

34. "We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation." (Romans 5: 3, 4)

35. "Pay careful attention to your own work, for then you will get the satisfaction of a job well done, and you won’t need to compare yourself to anyone else." (Galatians 6:4)

36. "Soldiers don’t get tied up in the affairs of civilian life, for then they cannot please the officer who enlisted them." (2 Timothy 2:3, 4)

37. "Our purpose is to please God, not people. He alone examines the motives of our hearts." (1 Thessalonians 2:4)

38. "If you keep yourself pure, you will be a special utensil for honorable use." (2 Timothy 2:21)

39. "If the work survives, that builder will receive a reward." (1 Corinthians 3:14)

40. "I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us." (Philippians 3:14)

Graduation Memory Poll

© 2018 Dora Weithers

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