What the Bible Says About Perseverance

Updated on November 14, 2019
revmjm profile image

Rev. Margaret Minnicks is an ordained Bible teacher. She writes many articles that are Bible lessons.

Perseverance: Definition

According to the dictionary, perseverance is the act of continuing to do something even though the task is difficult. It is having the endurance and patience to do or achieve something despite difficulties, failure, or opposition.

Persistence is a mental strength that helps a person continue to strive to reach his goals even though there might be obstacles and setbacks. Some people fail at persevering because it requires dedication, determination, consistency, focus, and lots of patience.

Paul describes perseverance as being "steadfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord" (1 Corinthians 15:58). He also encouraged his followers in Galatians 6:9, "And let us not be weary in well-doing; for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not."

Nehemiah rebuilding the wall of Jerusalem
Nehemiah rebuilding the wall of Jerusalem | Source

Nehemiah Exhibited Perseverance

A good example of perseverance in the Bible is Nehemiah who showed genuine commitment. He was instrumental in rebuilding the wall of Jerusalem that had been in ruin for many years.

Nehemiah had never been to Jerusalem, but while he was a cupbearer for King Artaxerxes he heard about the ruined wall. It disturbed him so deeply that he asked for time off from his job to go to Jerusalem to rebuild the wall.

Nehemiah was met with opposition, but he and his team never gave up. They practiced perseverance and the wall was rebuilt in only 52 days.

David being anointed king
David being anointed king | Source

David Exhibited Perseverance

David was anointed to become king long before he sat on the throne. He was just a lad at the time when Samuel went to David's house to anoint a king. The young boy was outside tending sheep while all his older brothers lined up thinking one of them would be anointed. However, Samuel was there to bestow the honor on David.

At the time, Saul was king. Therefore, David had to wait until Saul's reign was over. King Saul was very jealous of David and tried to kill him, but he didn't. God was not pleased with Saul as the first king of Israel. After his death, none of Saul's relatives became king. So, David took his place on the throne after many years of persevering.

The Church at Ephesus Persevered

Perseverance is a virtue that some people have and some people lack. Jesus commended the Church at Ephesus for persevering. He said, "And you have persevered and have endured hardships, and have labored for my name's sake and have not become weary" (Revelation 2:2).

Jesus commended the church at Ephesus for their hard work, their perseverance, their endurance without becoming weary, resisting sin and being aware of false prophecy. Every church and every individual should exhibit those characteristics to please God.

The Church at Smyrna Persevered

Jesus informed the Church at Smyrna "not to be afraid of what they were about to suffer." He also encouraged them to be faithful even to the point of death because He would give them a victor's crown for enduring (Revelation 2:10).

Disciples of Christ Exhibit Perseverance

Disciples of Christ exhibit perseverance when they possess genuine faith. They exhibit perseverance when they endure to the end. Those who believe in Jesus are not exempt from suffering. However, their faith will carry them a long way and allow them to persevere and be a witness for those whose faith is weak.

Therefore, perseverance is not only important for the person who has it, but it is also important for those who are witnesses to it.

There is a crown of life laid up in heaven for those who endure, according to James 1:12 and Revelation 2:10.

Why Everyone Should Persevere

It is not easy to persevere, but it can be done. Perseverance involves genuine commitment and patience no matter how difficult the assignment might be. People must set their hearts and minds on accomplishing whatever God has called them to do.

They must not lose heart and give up just as Nehemiah, David, the Church of Ephesus and the Church of Smyrna didn't give up. Instead, they were steadfast and determined to finish the work God had given them. For that reason, they will receive a crown of life that awaits them.

Do you persevere?

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    • revmjm profile imageAUTHOR

      Margaret Minnicks 

      10 months ago from Richmond, VA

      Thanks, Cheryl, for reading and commenting on my article. I am glad to know that I am not the only one who has had to persevere.

    • revmjm profile imageAUTHOR

      Margaret Minnicks 

      10 months ago from Richmond, VA

      Tim, I know a lot about perseverance. I am glad my enduring has not been done in vain. I know my change is going to come. It not on this earth, then in heaven!

    • Tim Truzy info4u profile image

      Tim Truzy 

      10 months ago from U.S.A.

      Wonderful article, Margaret. "I'm so glad trouble don't last always," to quote the Soul Stirrers classic gospel song. Admiration for inspiring us.

    • Cheryl E Preston profile image

      Cheryl E Preston 

      10 months ago from Roanoke

      I’ve been persevering through some things for decades.’I understand this.

    • profile image

      Izraul Hidashi 

      10 months ago from Earth, Milky Way Galaxy.

      What I find interesting about the bible are the little things that reveal much bigger ones.

      Example: The Bible say's Jesus greeted & departed using the phrase "Peace be upon you." In his native language of Aramaic, it's pronounced "Asalamualykum." And if you read Mathew 26:39, it says that Jesus prayed on his face. That's quite the revelation. :)

    • revmjm profile imageAUTHOR

      Margaret Minnicks 

      10 months ago from Richmond, VA

      Yes, indeed, MsDora. I always think about Nehemiah in reference to perseverance. I admire him for embarking upon a worthwhile project. I also admire him for not quitting when he faced barriers and met with opposition.

      As always, thanks for reading and commenting!

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 

      10 months ago from The Caribbean

      My favorite Bible story of perseverance is the story of Ezra and Nehemiah. The other stories you cited also make the point effectively. Thanks.


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