What Does the Bible Say About Depression?

Depression and anxiety affects at least 1 in every 4 people, and both mental health conditions are diagnosed at a rapid rate each day. It is serious, and can affect every aspect of someone’s life.

What Does the Bible Say About Depression

Here’s what to know about depression and faith.

The Bible has a lot to say about emotions like anxiety, depression and fear. There are several prominent figures in the Bible who are said to have depression, and nowhere is this more apparent than in the Biblical book of Job.

Depression is not viewed as a lack of faith, but instead as a condition. Faith in God, however, can show us the way to seeking the right treatment or help for depression – or even helping others who are in need of it.

In the book of Proverbs, it is said that those who acknowledge the Lord will have their paths made straight. This says that, even when we feel depressed or sad, God still has a plan set out for us.

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6

Further, the Bible encourages us to put all our anxieties and fears closer to the Lord. This reassures us that, even in the sight of a condition like depression, we can still trust in the Lord to help us through it.

“Casting all your anxieties on Him, because He cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7

The Bible also tells us, in Matthew, that the Lord will provide us with rest from our burdens when we are most in need of it.

“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28

Psalm 34 tells us that God hears the brokenhearted and crushed in spirit. This passage tells us that we can always confide in God when we are feeling depressed or anxious in any way.

Job is one Biblical figure who spends a great deal of his life battling depression, but he is not the only one. Throughout the Gospels, even the book of Acts and Proverbs mention fear and anxiety as emotions that we might experience away from the Lord.

Is Depression Caused by a Lack of Faith?

No, depression is not caused by a lack of faith at all. The Bible admits that many Biblical figures experience sadness and depression that exists separately from their relationship with the Lord – but the Bible is also fast to remind us that we should find solace in the word when we need it the most.

Job is one famous Biblical figure that struggled with feeilngs of depression, and it was certainly not caused by a lack of his faith in the Lord.

Psalm 9 tells us that the Lord acts as a stronghold for those who require him, including anyone who might be depressed or anxious.

“The LORD is a stronghold for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.” Psalm 9:9

Even in most of the Bible, depression is seen as a separate condition that help must be sought for. The Bible reminds us frequently, though, that it is okay to unpack our troubles in front of the Lord (and that He never gives us anything that we cannot handle).

What Does the Bible Say About Anxiety?

Anxiety is an emotion that can often be seen happening together with depression, and they are sometimes diagnosed together. Just as with depression, the Bible references anxiety several times – and there are specific passages that tell us not to be fearful when we are with the Lord.

One passage in Phillippians tells us that we should not be fearful or anxious, but instead should bring our concerns to the Lord. He is always there in our time of need, guarding our hearts and our minds.

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with
thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which
surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7

One of the most famous Psalms in the Bible, number 23, is also there to be a comfort to anyone who suffers from depression and could use the Lord’s help. When we walk through difficult times, it is sometimes enough to know that the Lord is there alongside us – and we are never truly alone.

“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you
are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.” Psalm 23:4

Proverbs compares the anxiety that we might feel to a weight, and says that anxiety weighs people down ehile good works make them glad. If you know that someone is anxious about something or depression is their struggle, do what you can to reassure them.

What Does the Bible Say About Depression

What Bible Verses Can Help Depression?

The Bible makes many references to depression, but also tells us that we can confide in the Lord with our troubles. God is always there to take the weight off, no matter what difficulty we might be dealing with at that point in time.

A passage in Romans reminds us that we should not be conformed to this world, but instead transformed by the renewal of our minds. Simply, it says that we should never let a condition like depression get the upper hand when the Lord has given us the power of faith.

“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that
by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and
perfect.” Romans 12:2

Another passage in Deutronomy tells us that the Lord is always there for us, and will not forsake us at any point during our time of need. Through depression, anxiety and fear we are never truly alone, but always walking together with the Lord.

It is the LORD who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.”

Deuteronomy 31:8

Even though depression can make us feel helpless, through God we should know that we never are truly alone.

Psalm 40 is one more passage that speaks to us about having faith in the Lord whenever we endure difficulty or feeilngs of depression. This passage tells us that God can lift us from our pit of destruction and fear – and through God, one can find upliftment.

“I waited patiently for the LORD; he inclined to me and heard my cry. He drew me up from the pit of destruction, out of the miry bog, and set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure. He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God. Many will see and fear, and put their trust in the LORD.” Psalm 40:1-3

A passage in John reminds us that God will never subject us to things we cannot handle. Even through heavy temptations, fear or depression, it’s one more part of the Bible that is there to remind us we are never alone – but with God, all things are possible.

“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

The book of Matthew encourages us to bring our burdens to the Lord, and He will give us rest. Never be overcome by feelings of depression or sadness when God is there to lighten the weight that you might feel. Again, it is important to remember that God will never subject us to anything we cannot handle.

“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30

Another verse that speaks of God and his ability to overcome can be found in 1 Corinthians. The Bible admits that life is not easy, and there are trials and tribulations everywhere, but solace is always to be found in the arms of the Lord.

“No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it” Corinthians 10:13

Depression can be a difficult condition, but the Bible is no stranger to its existence. Help, treatment and confidence in the Lord for His plan can sometimes help us to feel better when we are not sure how to approach the next phase of our lives.

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