What does the Bible say about passion?
We’re all familiar with passion. We see it displayed by fans at sports events, influencers on their blogs, and politicians during their campaign speeches. Passion, or zeal, isn’t new. As humans, we display strong emotions for the people and things important to us. Passion for Christ is an enthusiastic desire to follow him. You may wonder if you exemplify this. So, what does it mean to have passion for Christ? Let’s find out.
Christian quotes about passion
“Ardent love or desire introduced, as passionately longing to please and glorify the Divine Being, to be in every respect conformed to him, and in that way to enjoy him.” David Brainerd
“But whatever you do, find the God-centered, Christ-exalting, Bible-saturated passion of your life, and find your way to say it and live for it and die for it. And you will make a difference that lasts. You will not waste your life.” John Piper
“The secret of the Christian’s passion is simple: Everything we do in life we do it as to the Lord and not to men.” David Jeremiah
“Christ did not die to make good works merely possible or to produce a half-hearted pursuit. He died to produce in us a passion for good deeds. Christian purity is not the mere avoidance of evil, but the pursuit of good.” — John Piper
What does it mean to have a passion for Christ?
Passion for God could be defined as having enthusiasm or zeal for God. Other synonyms for passion include:
- Keen interest
People with a passion for Christ want to follow him. They want to learn as much as possible about him, his teachings, and his commands. Passionate Christians love Christ. If you’re passionate for Christ, you desire to grow in your faith and want to have biblical fellowship with other believers.
The amazing thing is that God is passionate about having a relationship with us. According to Scripture, we were separated from God because of our sins.
None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God; All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one. (Romans 3:11-12 ESV)
God, in his infinite love, created a way for us to have a relationship with him by sending his Son, Jesus, who laid down his life to bridge the gap between God and us. Jesus’ death on the cross for our sins lets us know God.
For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:23 ESV)
God is more passionate for us than we could ever be for him. We feel his love and care not through solving a problem with sin but by sending the Holy Spirit. After Jesus rose from the dead, he promised his disciples that although he had to leave, he would send someone to help them. We read Jesus’ comforting words to his disciples.
And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you. ( John 14:16 ESV)
The God, the three in one-Father, son, and holy Spirit is passionate about having fellowship with us. In essence, this motivates us to love him.
1. 2 Corinthians 4:7 “But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.”
2. Psalm 16:11 (NIV) “You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.”
3. Revelation 2:4 (NASB) “But I have this against you, that you have left your first love.”
4. 1 John 4:19 (ESV) “We love because he first loved us.”
5. Jeremiah 2:2 “Go and proclaim in the hearing of Jerusalem, Thus says the Lord, “I remember the devotion of your youth, your love as a bride, how you followed me in the wilderness, in a land not sown.”
6. 1 Peter 4:2 “so as to live the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for the lusts of men, but for the will of God.”
7. Romans 12:11 “Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord.”
8. Psalm 84:2 (NLT) “I long, yes, I faint with longing to enter the courts of the Lord. With my whole being, body and soul, I will shout joyfully to the living God.”
9. Psalm 63:1 “O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where there is no water.”
10. Matthew 5:6 (KJV) “Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.”
11. Jeremiah 29:13 (NKJV) “And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.”
How do I get a passion for Jesus?
As Christians, we’re constantly growing in our passion for Jesus. As we get to know him, we learn what is important to him, how to please him, and how we can change to be more like him. Our goals in life change. Suddenly spending time with Jesus is a priority in our life because we love him and want to be with him. Here are a few suggestions for growing your relationship with Christ and being more passionate for Christ.
1. Fall in love with Christ
Passion for Christ is seeing his beauty. It’s allowing our hearts to warm to the truths of Christ’s love displayed on the cross.
Falling in love with Christ means you treasure him above other things. Passion for Christ changes you. Paul describes his sold-out passion for Christ like this,
Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ. (Philippians 3:8 ESV)
2. Talk to God
Every day, take some time to talk with God. Be sure to confess your sins and ask for his forgiveness. Pray for your needs and the needs of others. Thank him for all the many ways he helps you each day. Some people read a psalm and then personalize the words, praying them to God.
Praise the Lord! Praise the Lord, O my soul! I will praise the Lord as long as I live;
I will sing praises to my God while I have my being. (Psalm 146:1-2)
3. Serve Him with your whole being
As Christians, we’re called to worship God with every part of our being. Jesus knows we’re prone to wander. We easily lose focus on what’s important. The world lures us away, and our hearts grow cold and complacent. Jesus encouraged his followers how to avoid this complacency.
And he said to him, ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ (Matthew 22:37 ESV)
4. Devour the Bible
You grow in passion for Christ as you read and study Scripture. You spend time in God’s word every day. Reading Scripture is like drinking a cold cup of water on a hot, dry day.
2 Timothy 3:16 describes the power of Scripture to help us grow in our faith. All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness.
5. Spend time with other believers
Spend time with other believers who are passionate for Jesus. Being around passionate believers inspires and encourages you in our faith. Observing others’ passion for Christ is contagious. Join a Biblically sound church to grow in your faith and get opportunities to serve others.
6. Obey God’s word
Today, asking someone to obey is considered as hindering their rights. Many parents don’t require their kids to obey, the police are often seen as too authoritative, and few CEOs ask their employees to follow the rules. But Jesus didn’t shy away from difficult topics. He gets right to the heart of the matter when he says,
If you love me, you will keep my commandments. (John 14:15 ESV)
But he said, ‘Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and keep it!’ (Luke 11:28 ESV)
Passionate people have an ever-increasing desire to obey Scripture. They want to obey not because it’s a command but because they love Jesus. They love his commands and want to honor him.
12. Romans 12:1-2 “Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. 2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
13. Joshua 1:8 “Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.”
14. Isaiah 55:1 “Ho! Every one who thirsts, come to the waters; And you who have no money come, buy and eat. Come, buy wine and milk Without money and without cost.”
15. Ephesians 6:18 “And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.”
16. Proverbs 27:17 (ESV) “Iron sharpens iron, and one man sharpens another.”
17. 1 Thessalonians 5:17 (NLT) “Never stop praying.”
18. 1 Peter 2:2 “like newborn babies, long for the pure milk of the word, so that by it you may grow in respect to salvation.”
19. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.”
20. Matthew 22:37 (KJV) “Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.”
21. 1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”
22. Psalm 1:2 (ESV) “but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night.”
23. John 12:2-3 “Here a dinner was given in Jesus’ honor. Martha served, while Lazarus was among those reclining at the table with him. 3 Then Mary took about a pint[a] of pure nard, an expensive perfume; she poured it on Jesus’ feet and wiped his feet with her hair. And the house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume.”
Having a passion for lost souls
When you become a Christian, God changes your heart. We begin to live for God and for others rather than just ourselves. We see people through different eyes. We suddenly notice people’s needs, not just their material needs, but their spiritual needs. When you have a passion for lost souls, you want to share the gospel with them because you want them to know the good news about Christ. You long for them to experience his love and freedom from guilt and shame over the things they’ve done. You love Christ and want others to know and love him. A passion for lost souls also means you are willing to serve others without expecting anything in return. It may be inconvenient or costly to you.
24. Mark 10:45 “For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
25. Romans 10:1 “Brothers, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for them is that they may be saved.”
26. 1 Corinthians 9:22 “To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some.”
27. Acts 1:8 “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
28. Proverbs 11:30 “The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, and whoever captures souls is wise.”
29. 1 Corinthians 3:7 “So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth.”
30. Romans 10:15 “And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”
31. Daniel 12:3 “Those who are wise will shine like the bright expanse of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever.”
32. 1 Corinthians 9:23 “I do all this for the sake of the gospel, so that I may share in its blessings.”
33. Matthew 4:19 “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.”
Having a passionate worship and prayer life
It’s easy to allow your struggles and trials to steal your enthusiasm for God. You may not feel like worshipping or praying when you’re going through a difficult time. Believe it or not, that’s the best time to worship God. Worshipping God amid your trials forces you to look up. You focus on God and allow the Holy Spirit to comfort you. When you pray, God speaks. Sometimes when you’re praying, verses will come to mind which give you hope. Some people share how a special verse or worship song got them through their trials. Ask God to help you grow in worship and prayer. He’ll put the desire in your heart so you can experience a deeper worship and prayer life.
34. Psalm 50:15 “call upon me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify me.“
35. Psalm 43:5 “Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me?”
36. Psalms 75:1 “We praise you, God, we praise you, for your Name is near; people tell of your wonderful deeds.”
37. Isaiah 25:1 “Lord, you are my God; I will exalt you and praise your name, for in perfect faithfulness you have done wonderful things, things planned long ago.”
38. Psalm 45:3 “Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God.”
39. Exodus 23:25 “Worship the Lord your God, and his blessing will be on your food and water. I will take away sickness from among you.”
40. Psalm 95:6 “Come, let’s worship and bow down, Let’s kneel before the Lord our Maker.”
41. 1 Samuel 2:2 “There is none holy like the Lord: for there is none besides you; there is no rock like our God.”
42. Luke 1:74 “To grant us to be rescued from the power of our foes And so render worship to Him free from fear.”
43. John 9:38 “He said, “Lord, I believe!” and he worshiped him.”
44. Psalm 28:7 “The Lord is my strength and my shield; in him my heart trusts, and I am helped; my heart exults, and with my song I give thanks to him.”
45. Psalm 29:2 “Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name; worship the Lord in the splendor of his holiness.”
46. Luke 24:52 “They worshiped him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy.”
Rekindling your passion for your work
What about having enthusiasm for work? Only some have an exciting job. Honestly, it’s tempting to feel jealous of some people’s jobs. They seem more glamorous and fun than our simple jobs. Even the most mundane job can be a wonderful opportunity to serve God. Who knows the impact you may have on people’s lives at work?
There’s a story about a man who worked at a computer store. He worked faithfully, and whenever he could, he shared the gospel with his co-workers. After working there for several years, one of his co-workers came to him and told him he was now a follower of Jesus. He said It wasn’t only the man’s words that impacted him but how he conducted himself at work day in and day out. His life was a witness for Christ.
God doesn’t care what type of work you do, but you do your work for his glory. Ask God to provide the job he wants for you. Ask him to help you grow your appreciation and gratitude for your job.
47. Colossians 3:23-24 “Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, 24 knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.”
48. Galatians 6:9 “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”
49. Colossians 3:17 “And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.”
50. Proverbs 16:3 “Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.”
51. Genesis 2:15 “The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to till it and keep it.”
Should we follow our passions?
In Scripture, we have inspiring examples of faith-filled people who followed God. They fervently desired to obey his word and honor him with their lives.
- Abraham- God called Abraham to leave his own country and set out for an unknown place. In faith, he obeyed God. By faith, Abraham obeyed when God called him to set out for a place he was to receive as an inheritance, and he set out, not knowing where he was going. (Hebrews 11:8 ESV)
- Noah-Noah obeyed God’s command to build an ark. And Noah did all that the Lord had commanded him. (Genesis 7:6 ESV)
- Moses-He led the Israelites out of Egypt into the promised Land.
- Paul-Paul gave up his prestigious life as a rabbi to follow Christ.
There is a big difference between following your passions and following God. This list of people followed God because they were captivated by his mercy, majesty, and power.
They gave up everything to follow him. Their passion wasn’t an end but a motivation to follow God completely.
52. Galatians 5:24 “And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.”
53. Matthew 6:24 “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.”
54. Psalm 37:4 “Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart.”
55. Jeremiah 17:9 (ESV) “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?”
57. John 4:34 “Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to accomplish his work.”
What has your heart?
For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. (Matthew 6:21 ESV)
Material things can easily capture our hearts. We see an advertisement for a new car, chair, or dress, and we suddenly want it. We want our homes to look like the blogs we follow. The things we treasure capture our hearts to the point where they erode our faith. Some good questions to ask could be:
- Who or what has my heart today?
- Where do I spend most of my free time?
- What do I think about most of the time?
- How do I spend my money?
Do I compare myself, my home, and my family to others?
It’s easy to get off track, but God is faithful to help us when you ask God to help you stay focused on what’s important.
58. Matthew 6:21 “For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.”
59. Matthew 6:22 “The eye is the lamp of the body; so then if your eye is clear, your whole body will be full of light.”
60. Proverbs 4:23 “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.”
Being passionate for Christ means you take the time to be with him. If you find your heart growing cold towards God, take some time today to ask him to help you grow in your enthusiasm and zeal for him. Ask him to help you make good choices at home, work, and school, and keep him your first treasure.