What does the Bible say about bad company?
The people who we’re with really do affect us in life. If we’re with false teachers we will be influenced by false teachings. If we’re with gossipers we will be influenced to listen and gossip. If we hang around pot smokers most likely we will smoke pot. If we hang around drunkards most likely we will become drunkards. Christians are to try to help others get saved, but if someone refuses to listen and continues in their evil ways watch out.
It would be very wise not to make friends with bad people. Bad company can lead you to do things that are not suitable for Christians. It can be an unbelieving boyfriend or girlfriend, it can be an ungodly family member, etc. Never forget peer pressure comes from bad and fake friends. It’s true and it will always be true “bad company ruins good morals.”
Christian quotes about bad company
“Nothing perhaps affects man’s character more than the company he keeps.” J. C. Ryle
“But depend on it, bad company in this life, is the sure way to procure worse company in the life to come.” J.C. Ryle
“Tell me who your friends are, and I will tell you who you are.”
“You can’t keep a clean reputation hanging around messy people.”
“Associate yourself with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation. It is better be alone than in bad company.” George Washington
“The statistics indicate that teenagers are spending three hours a day watching TV. Preschoolers are watching as much as four hours per day. If teenagers are listening to three hours of TV every day and averaging five minutes a day talking with their dads, who is winning the influence battle? If your preschooler watches four hours per day, how many hours is he hearing from you about how God runs His world? It doesn’t take X-rated violence, sex and language to have an ungodly influence. Even the “good” programs for children can be “bad company” if they offer an exciting, satisfying world that ignores (or denies) the sovereign God of the Bible. Do you really want your children to get the impression that it’s okay to ignore God most of the time?” John Younts
Let’s learn what Scripture says about bad company
1. 2 John 1:10-11 If anyone comes to your meeting and does not teach the truth about Christ, don’t invite that person into your home or give any kind of encouragement. Anyone who encourages such people becomes a partner in their evil work.
2. 1 Corinthians 15:33-34 Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners. Awake to righteousness, and sin not; for some have not the knowledge of God: I speak this to your shame.
3. 2 Corinthians 6:14-16 Stop becoming unevenly yoked with unbelievers. What partnership can righteousness have with lawlessness? What fellowship can light have with darkness? What harmony exists between the Messiah and Beliar, or what do a believer and an unbeliever have in common? What agreement can a temple of God make with idols? For we are the temple of the living God, just as God said: “I will live and walk among them. I will be their God, and they will be my people.”
4. Proverbs 13:20-21 Spend time with the wise and you will become wise, but the friends of fools will suffer. Trouble always comes to sinners, but good people enjoy success.
5. Proverbs 24:1-2 Do not envy the wicked, do not desire their company; for their hearts plot violence, and their lips talk about making trouble.
6. Proverbs 14:6-7 The mocker seeks wisdom and finds none, but knowledge comes easily to the discerning. Stay away from a fool, for you will not find knowledge on their lips.
7. Psalm 26:4-5 I do not spend time with liars, nor do I make friends with those who hide their sin. I hate the company of evil people, and I won’t sit with the wicked.
8. 1 Corinthians 5:11 I am writing to tell you that you must not associate with those who call themselves believers in Christ but who sin sexually, or are greedy, or worship idols, or abuse others with words, or get drunk, or cheat people. Do not even eat with people like that.
Being enticed by the company we keep
9. Proverbs 1:11-16 They will say, “Come with us. Let’s ambush and kill someone; let’s attack some innocent people just for fun. Let’s swallow them alive, as death does; let’s swallow them whole, as the grave does. We will take all kinds of valuable things and fill our houses with stolen goods. Come join us, and we will share with you stolen goods.” My child, do not go along with them; do not do what they do. They are eager to do evil and are quick to kill.
10. Proverbs 16:29 A violent person entices his neighbor, and leads him down a path that is terrible.
Different types of bad company
Bad company can also be listening to devilish music and watching things that are inappropriate for a Christian, such as pornography.
11. Ecclesiastes 7:5 It is better to heed the rebuke of a wise person than to listen to the song of fools.
12. Psalm 119:37 Turn my eyes from looking at worthless things; and give me life in your ways.
13. Matthew 5:29-30 But if thy right eye be a snare to thee, pluck it out and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members perish, and not thy whole body be cast into hell. And if thy right hand be a snare to thee, cut it off and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members perish, and not thy whole body be cast into hell.
14. 1 John 4:1 Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.
15. Ephesians 5:11 Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them.
16. 1 Peter 4:3-4 For you spent enough time in the past doing what the gentiles like to do, living in sensuality, sinful desires, drunkenness, wild celebrations, drinking parties, and detestable idolatry. They insult you now because they are surprised that you are no longer joining them in the same excesses of wild living.
17. Proverbs 22:24-25 Make no friendship with a man given to anger, nor go with a wrathful man, lest you learn his ways and entangle yourself in a snare.
18. Psalm 1:1-4 Oh, the joys of those who do not follow evil men’s advice, who do not hang around with sinners, scoffing at the things of God.But they delight in doing everything God wants them to, and day and night are always meditating on his laws and thinking about ways to follow him more closely. They are like trees along a riverbank bearing luscious fruit each season without fail. Their leaves shall never wither, and all they do shall prosper. But for sinners, what a different story! They blow away like chaff before the wind.
Hanging around liars, gossipers, and slanderers.
19. Proverbs 17:4 A wicked person listens to deceitful lips; a liar pays attention to a destructive tongue.
20. Proverbs 20:19 A gossip goes around telling secrets, so don’t hang around with chatterers.
21. Proverbs 16:28 A dishonest man spreads strife, and a whisperer separates close friends.
Consequences of bad company
22. Ephesians 5:5-6 You can be sure that no immoral, impure, or greedy person will inherit the Kingdom of Christ and of God. For a greedy person is an idolater, worshiping the things of this world. Don’t be fooled by those who try to excuse these sins, for the anger of God will fall on all who disobey him.
23. Proverbs 28:7 A discerning son heeds instruction, but a companion of gluttons disgraces his father.
Trying to be part of the cool crowd
We are God-pleasers not man-pleasers.
24. Galatians 1:10 For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.
Examples of bad company in the Bible
25. Joshua 23:11-16 So be very careful to love the Lord your God. “But if you turn away and ally yourselves with the survivors of these nations that remain among you and if you intermarry with them and associate with them, then you may be sure that the Lord your God will no longer drive out these nations before you. Instead, they will become snares and traps for you, whips on your backs and thorns in your eyes, until you perish from this good land, which the Lord your God has given you. “Now I am about to go the way of all the earth. You know with all your heart and soul that not one of all the good promises the Lord your God gave you has failed. Every promise has been fulfilled; not one has failed. But just as all the good things the Lord your God has promised you have come to you, so he will bring on you all the evil things he has threatened, until the Lord your God has destroyed you from this good land he has given you. If you violate the covenant of the Lord your God, which he commanded you, and go and serve other gods and bow down to them, the Lord’s anger will burn against you, and you will quickly perish from the good land he has given you.”
Thanks for this compilation; great resource for teaching children and youth; so they can use these Biblical principles as standards early on in life. They are great for “training a child in the way to go.”