What the Bible Says About Humility & What Being Humble Looks Like (2023)

Humility isn’t an easy virtue to exercise, it takes courage, discipline and faith to put humility into daily practice. But humility is an important characteristic to develop as a follower of Christ. The Bible gives us guidance and words that inspire us to keep practicing humility.

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In the Pure Flix Original Movie “God’s Country Song,” Noah doesn’t know the true meaning of humility. As a country singer on the path to stardom, he is very arrogant and prideful - the root sin against humility. He is selfish, lives lavishly and indulgently and puts himself first. It’s only through spending time with his son and his estranged father that he begins to understand what humility is and how to practice it.

Let’s take a closer look at what humility is, what the Bible says about humility and how we can pray for an increase in humility and against being prideful.

What is the Spiritual Meaning of Humility?

Humility in the Bible is mentioned in Proverbs 22:4 (NIV). This Bible verse tells us the definition of humility distinctly and definitively:

Humility is the fear of the Lord; its wages are riches and honor and life.

Fear of the Lord isn’t referring to being scared of the Lord, but rather remembering that God alone is all-powerful. It’s acknowledging that only God deserves all glory and honor. Fear of the Lord reminds us that we should not hold ourselves in the same light or position that God righteously deserves.

What the Bible Says About Humility & What Being Humble Looks Like (1)

Therefore, being humble means that we acknowledge that we are wholly dependent on God and that without Him, we wouldn’t be who we are, and we wouldn’t have what we have or lead the life we live. Practicing humility shows that we put ourselves in a position that points all glory and all things back to God.


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Sometimes, we see humility as meaning that we are not allowed to think highly of ourselves. Humility merely means that we know we are God’s children, and we should love ourselves as He loves us, but that we do not become self-seeking, greedy or arrogant in spirit or in material things. Humility can be practiced regardless of job title, wealth or economic status.

As we mentioned earlier, the opposite of humility is pride. Humility in the Bible is presented as the practice of meekness, obedience to God, respect of self and others, submissiveness and modesty (see Colossians 3:12-13). People with humility put others' needs before their own, sacrificing for the love of others.

Read Also: 3 Times Christ Was an Example of Humility in the Bible

Noah exercises none of these characteristics as a country singer in “God’s Country Song.” The only person he cares and looks out for is himself. He’s solely focused on his career, his desires and his dream lifestyle. When JJ, his son, enters his life, Noah isn’t prepared for fatherhood, which centers on self-sacrifice and putting your child’s needs before your own. Noah’s manager, Larry, reminds him what humility and being a man of God really is about. Larry uses examples of humility in the Bible to illustrate his points to Noah.

Let’s look at some Bible verses about humility.

What Does the Bible Say About Humility?

Ultimately, Jesus is the perfect example of humility. But these Bible verses about humility help us to cultivate this virtue in ourselves so that we can become more like Jesus.

James 4:10 (NIV)

Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.

One of the most popular Bible verses about humility is James 4:10. This verse reminds us that God pours out His grace to those who practice humility.

What the Bible Says About Humility & What Being Humble Looks Like (2)

(Video) Bible Verses On Humbleness | What Does The Bible Say About Being Humble

Luke 14:11 (NIV)

For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.

At the beginning of “God’s Country Song,” Noah definitely believes in “exalt[ing]” himself, only to find himself humbled when he is stripped of his touring contract with superstar Colt Young and humiliated in the public eye. It’s only when he starts to be present for his son, learn to listen to the advice of his father and think less of himself that he understands what humility truly is.

Romans 12:3 (NIV)

For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you.

This Bible verse about humility explains how the opposite of humility is pride. As we think more and more of ourselves, we begin to think less of God and less about following His Word. Practicing humility means that we never think of ourselves as greater than God, but instead as His obedient and lowly servant.

2 Chronicles 7:14 (NIV)

if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.

Noah in “God’s Country Song” follows many “wicked ways.” His partying lifestyle on tour leads to much sin and “debauchery” (see Ephesians 5:18). It’s only when Noah realizes that the important things in his life - his family, his singing career, his son - are slipping away from him that he recognizes he needs to change.

Read Also: 6 Essential Ephesians 4 Lessons About What it Means to be a Christian

Proverbs 11:2 (NIV)

When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.

As we see Noah become more humble, he grows in wisdom. He especially starts to see the error of his prideful ways in how he handled the strained relationship with his father. Humility gives Noah the chance to get to know his father better, which opens his eyes to an entirely different side of his father he never knew. Having a better understanding of who his father is allows Noah to help understand past mistakes both he and his father made over the years.

John 3:30 (NIV)

He must become greater; I must become less.

(Video) Christian Humility | What it Means to be Humble

As C.S. Lewis said, “humility isn’t thinking less of yourself, it’s thinking of yourself less.” Humility calls us to first serve God and our neighbors before serving ourselves. When we respond in obedience to Him and give Him all the glory and honor, we are practicing humility.

What the Bible Says About Humility & What Being Humble Looks Like (3)

Prayers for Humility and Against Pride

As we mentioned, humility is a hard virtue to practice. It’s not always easy to put others’ needs before our own. It’s also hard not to gloat about the praise, glory and all the accolades that come our way. But humility requires us to point that recognition back to God.

Praying for a humble heart and spirit can strengthen us in our resolve to not fall into the sin of pride. Here are a couple of prayers for humility we can offer up whenever we’re battling pride.

This prayer asks for a change of heart when we recognize pride and arrogance is creeping its way into our lives:

Dear Lord, I am coming to realize how dangerous pride is in the life of a believer and how important true, godly humility is to the heart of God.

I read in Your Word that pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall, and I am beginning to see the devastating and destructive nature of pride and the true blessing that comes from a heart that is humble and contrite in spirit.

Keep me from falling prey to the many temptations that pride seems to scatter in my path, where I want to be the center of attention and desire to receive all the acclaim and glory that rightly belongs to You.

Teach me Your ways and show me how I may clothe myself in godly humility, for Peter teaches that, "God opposes the proud but shows grace to the humble." Thank You for opening up Your Word to me and helping me to see the beautiful truth about humility. I ask that You would work a good work in my life day by day, until I am more like Christ and less like me. In Jesus' name I pray, amen.

This prayer, credited to Sir Francis Drake, is titled "Disturb Us, Lord." It reminds us not only to be humble in spirit but also in material things.

(Video) What is Christian Humility? | Being Humble Today | Humility Explained

Disturb us, Lord, when
We are too well pleased with ourselves,
When our dreams have come true
Because we have dreamed too little,
When we arrived safely
Because we sailed too close to the shore.

Disturb us, Lord, when
With the abundance of things we possess
We have lost our thirst
For the waters of life;
Having fallen in love with life,
We have ceased to dream of eternity
And in our efforts to build a new earth,
We have allowed our vision
Of the new Heaven to dim.

Disturb us, Lord, to dare more boldly,
To venture on wider seas
Where storms will show your mastery;
Where losing sight of land,
We shall find the stars.
We ask You to push back
The horizons of our hopes;
And to push into the future
In strength, courage, hope, and love. Amen.

This prayer quotes the Bible verse about humility, Micah 6:8, and is a short prayer that can be easily memorized for those times when we quickly need to ask God for humility.


In Micah 6:8 You say, “O people, the LORD has told you what is good, and this is what he requires of you: to do what is right, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God.” Today we choose to walk humbly with You. We choose to live by Your Holy Spirit and to follow Your lead. Help us to hear You clearly, for we do not want to walk by pride or self-sufficiency, we want to walk with You. In Jesus name, Amen.

That concludes our list of Bible verses about humility and prayers against pride. To see how Noah turns from his prideful ways and seeks to be more humble, watch the Pure Flix Original movie, “God’s Country Song,” streaming only on Pure Flix starting June 16.

What the Bible Says About Humility & What Being Humble Looks Like (4)

(Video) Pride vs Humility - Video Bible Study on the Importance of Humility | Troy Black
Marissa Zimmet

I was born and raised just across the bay from Tampa, Florida (Go, Lightning!) and attended college at ECU in Greenville, North Carolina. I am a devout Catholic and am active in my parish in Charlotte, North Carolina. Outside of work, I love to run, hike, watch movies and hockey, and spend time with my dog, Rose, and my cat, Toasty, who are both rescues.


What the Bible Says About Humility & What Being Humble Looks Like? ›

The Bible defines humility as “the fear of the Lord” (Proverbs 22:4). Its etymological root is in the Latin word "humus" meaning "of the earth." To be humble is to be face down in the dirt, submitting to the authority of another, without personal pride. This is the Christian's proper position before the Lord.

What does true humility look like? ›

Humility is really quite simple: it is the recognition and acceptance of reality through open-mindedness to truth. Humble leaders grasp their own capabilities in relation to others and the situation at hand.

What God says about being humble? ›

God's Word tells us that, as Christians, we are to submit to one another in lowliness of mind. “Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to your elders. Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility, for 'God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble. '” 1 Peter 5:5-6.

Is humble and humility the same thing? ›

Humbleness and humility both refer to the quality of being modest. While humbleness can also mean the state of being or feeling low in rank, as in The humbleness of his upbringing accustomed him to living simply, humility only refers to having a modest opinion of oneself.

What does the Bible say about being humble and kind? ›

Colossians 3:12-13

“Put on then, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.”

What are four qualities of a person with humility? ›

After all, who doesn't need greater humility?), here are 13 habits of humble people:
  • They're Situationally Aware. ...
  • They Retain Relationships. ...
  • They Make Difficult Decisions With Ease. ...
  • They Put Others First. ...
  • They Listen. ...
  • They're Curious. ...
  • They Speak Their Minds. ...
  • They Take Time To Say “Thank You”
Mar 1, 2015

What are the 8 marks of humility? ›

In Chasing Humility, he helps you explore eight essential aspects of humility in the life of a Christian: authenticity, confidence, gratitude, love, praise, empowerment, mentoring, and breaking barriers.

What are 5 ways to be humble? ›

To try to cultivate humility, you may want to try one or more of these activities:
  • Spend time listening to others. ...
  • Practice mindfulness, and focus on the present. ...
  • Be grateful for what you have. ...
  • Ask for help when you need it. ...
  • Seek feedback from others on a regular basis. ...
  • Review your actions against the language of pride.

How does Jesus show humility? ›

Jesus' humility on earth comes in the form of not taking advantage of the pleasures and luxuries He had in heaven as the Son of Man. Instead, He took it upon Himself to be amongst the sinners and the poverty that His people had to endure. He even suffered an agonizing death to save us from our sins.

What is an example of humility in the Bible? ›

The greatest example of humility in Scripture is the Lord Jesus Christ. We are instructed to follow His example. Like Jesus, we are to “do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than [ourselves]” (Phil. 2:3).

What are examples of humility? ›

Humility Examples
  • You don't think you're better than everyone else. ...
  • You know your own weaknesses.
  • You do not boast about your strengths.
  • You acknowledge that you can always improve and grow.
  • You graciously thank your opponent when you win.
  • You admit when you don't know something.
Oct 17, 2022

What does humility truly mean? ›

Humility is an attitude of spiritual modesty that comes from understanding our place in the larger order of things. It entails not taking our desires, successes, or failings too seriously. In the past decade in particular, psychologists have rediscovered the importance of humility.

What is the meaning of Proverbs 22 4? ›

Proverbs 22:4 Tells Us the Reward of Humility

And not everybody who is poor is proud. So, the picture here in this proverb is that there's reward that comes with humility and fear of the Lord. Life and honor are found in fearing God, and being humble before God.

How to be humble like Jesus? ›

To humble oneself is to acknowledge God as Lord and to obey as servant. In order to do so, then, the Son had to take “the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men” (Philippians 2:7). “We, as creatures, must obey our Creator, and he, as our brother, did the same.”

What is a humble heart in the Bible? ›

A humble heart recognizes sin and then turns away from it. Conversely, a proud heart refuses to admit any wrongdoing. When King Saul was confronted with how he disobeyed God — twice — he tries to justify his behavior (I Samuel 13:11-24; I Samuel 15:15).

What does being humble look like? ›

A humble person does not flaunt their wealth, status, accomplishments, or anything else they may have. They are modest and often embarrassed by praise. Instead of being proud of themselves, a humble person will be happy for others who deserve the credit.

What does it look like when someone lacks humility? ›

A person who lacks humility is arrogant. It is a person who only thinks of themselves and sees themselves as higher and better than others. There is no room for an arrogant person to improve themselves because they do not recognize their flaws. A person who is not humble does not have a growth mindset.

Why is being humble important to God? ›

Humility is a grace that attracts more grace. Pride closes the door to spiritual growth, but humility opens the door of your life to more of God's grace. To the humble, God gives patience, and peace, and gentleness. The fruit of the Spirit grows in the soil of humility.

What are God's rewards for humility? ›

The reward for humility and fear of the Lord is “riches and honor and life,” the things God promised Abraham when He called him, and Solomon after he asked for wisdom.

What does the Bible teaches on humility? ›

Jesus tells His followers that “Whoever is the greatest should be the servant of the others. If you put yourself above others, you will be put down. But if you humble yourself, you will be honored.”

What are the three key actions of humility? ›

Research shows there are three key actions that reveal humility:
  • Recognizing your own shortcomings and limitations.
  • Appreciating others' strengths, giving credit where it's due, and highlighting the team's success over your individual achievements.
  • Showing openness to learning from others.
Jun 29, 2018

How do you humble yourself before God? ›

  1. Thank God often and always. Thankfulness stops pride growing. ...
  2. Confess your sins regularly. Confession is a reality check as it reminds us who we are. ...
  3. Be ready to accept humiliations. ...
  4. Don't worry about status. ...
  5. Have a sense of humour. ...
  6. Listen to others. ...
  7. Ask questions. ...
  8. Consider others before yourself.
Apr 5, 2018

What is humbling yourself before God? ›

It's taking the focus off of yourself and focusing on what really matters – God! Come to the cross with a clear conscience. Confess your sins to the Lord, give up whatever is burdening you, and be willing to leave it at the cross.

How can I be proud but humble? ›

Here are two ways to be proud of yourself in a humble way.
  1. DELIGHT, NOT PRIDE. When you accomplish something and feel really good about it, that isn't pride. It's delight. ...
  2. THANKFUL, NOT ENTITLED. The thing that keeps you humble when you feel good about something you've done is thankfulness.
Oct 28, 2017

How does humility bring us closer to God? ›

To close, cultivating humility pushes us closer to the Lord. By cherishing His supreme role, we appreciate more about His grace and depend deeper on His promises. Once we come before Him, with Him on the throne instead of ourselves, we are able to grow in humility with others.

What is a symbol of humility? ›

NPS. Dwennimmen, literally meaning "ram's horns," symbolizes that even the strong have to also be humble. The symbol is a bird's eye view of two rams butting heads, and the rams' horns symbolizes strength and humility through the characteristics of a ram.

What Scripture says about true humility? ›

1 Peter 5:5. Likewise, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”

Who is the perfect example of humility? ›

Jesus is the perfect example of humility, and we are called to follow His example. But, can we follow His example perfectly? No. Only Jesus can be perfectly humble, but because of His humility, He offers us salvation and forgiveness for all the times we're not perfect!

What is a simple act of humility? ›

Humility is exhibited by respectful behavior towards others. A humble person doesn't think they are superior to others and is devoid of arrogance and self-praise. Also, a humble person won't seek favors in return for their support. Helping others and showing compassion comes naturally to them.

How do you practice humility in the Bible? ›

Qualities of Humility

We become meek and teachable like a child (see Matthew 18:4; Mosiah 3:19). We overcome pride and “recognize gratefully our dependence on the Lord.” 1 We repent when we need to repent. We understand that we need Heavenly Father's support and that our talents and our gifts come from Him.

What is the highest form of humility? ›

It is not in denial of your talents and gifts but to recognize them and live up to your worth and something greater. It is in the service to others that is the greatest form of humility.

What is the spiritual meaning of humility? ›

It means you aim to continually listen, receive, and respond with generous openness to life from the deep conviction of God's lovingkindness and goodwill. Spiritual humility is reliant upon the God who is “other” than us. He is most often known in ways that include and yet transcend our physical senses alone.

What is the core value of humility? ›

Humility as a value, at its highest, allows selflessness and dignity for a better world. A person with humility listens to and accepts others. Humility is staying stable and maintaining power on the inside and not needing to control others on the outside.

What is false humility in the Bible? ›

Humble people fully appreciate their own gifts and talents, but don't esteem themselves above others. False humility, on the other hand, is pridefulness in disguise. We practice false humility when we intentionally devalue ourselves or our contributions in an attempt to appear humble.

What is the power of humility? ›

Humility allows people to be open to the possibility of making a mistake. It's an integral part of moral leadership. If you're lacking in humility, you're less likely to recognize the potential for errors or mistakes in your work or decisions.

What does Micah 6 verse 8 mean? ›

God has grace for us even though we are not perfectly obedient. Some translations instead use the word “desire” in Micah 6:8. God gives us the gift of salvation by grace. This verse simply describes what God wants from us in return: to do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with God.

What is Proverbs 11 2? ›

Proverbs 11:2 "When pride cometh, then cometh shame: but with the lowly is wisdom." Because the human heart is so deceitful (Jeremiah 17:9), it fools us so easily and so often. We foolishly employ tactics to pacify our insecurities and fears that ultimately make them worse.

What is Proverbs 16 18? ›

Proverbs 16:18 In-Context

18 Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall. 19 Better to be lowly in spirit along with the oppressed than to share plunder with the proud.

How do you walk in humility? ›

Here are five tips for walking humbly that we can learn from this passage:
  1. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Our intentions matter. ...
  2. Value others more highly than ourselves. ...
  3. Care about the interests of others. ...
  4. Use your position for the advantage of others. ...
  5. Be willing to take the lowest position.
Jan 16, 2018

How do you humble yourself to the Lord verses? ›

James 4:10 in Other Translations

10 Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you. 10 Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up in honor. 10 Get down on your knees before the Master; it's the only way you'll get on your feet.

What is the Psalm of humble? ›

And Psalm 25:9 is saying that he teaches the humble his way. So the key to righteousness and the key to experiencing the ways of God, the abundant life that God has designed for us, his ways in our lives, is humility. So we pray, Oh, God, we ask for humility in each of our lives. God, we pray for humility.

Who is the humble woman in the Bible? ›

Abigail is a lesser-known heroine in the Bible, a humble woman who was married to a wealthy scoundrel. Abigail combined her wisdom with her wealth to appear before an approaching enemy to plead for the safety of her husband's household.

What does a humble heart look like? ›

Heart humility is being honest with ourselves and others, and expressing our gratitude and respect for all involved. Often when people ponder humility, they think of monks, nuns or other religious figures who have dedicated their lives to being meek and self-effacing.

How can you tell if someone is truly humble? ›

The 21 Attributes of a Humble Person
  • They are not boastful. ...
  • They are grateful for everything in life. ...
  • They do not belittle others. ...
  • They are not jealous. ...
  • They are not proud. ...
  • They are not rude. ...
  • They are not vain. ...
  • They are not materialistic.

What does the Bible say true humility is? ›

The Bible defines humility as “the fear of the Lord” (Proverbs 22:4). Its etymological root is in the Latin word "humus" meaning "of the earth." To be humble is to be face down in the dirt, submitting to the authority of another, without personal pride. This is the Christian's proper position before the Lord.

How does someone show humility? ›

An important element of humility is accepting yourself with all your faults, rather than judging yourself for your shortcomings. That doesn't mean you should not strive to improve, but positively, rather than berating yourself for your negative qualities.

What are the five qualities that are beautiful in a humble person? ›

The five beautiful qualities in a humble person are patience, gentleness, serenity, unselfish and happy.

What is the greatest example of humility in the Bible? ›

The greatest example of humility in Scripture is the Lord Jesus Christ. We are instructed to follow His example. Like Jesus, we are to “do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than [ourselves]” (Phil. 2:3).

What does Jesus teach about humility? ›

Jesus tells His followers that “Whoever is the greatest should be the servant of the others. If you put yourself above others, you will be put down. But if you humble yourself, you will be honored.”

What are the three types of humility? ›

He discussed Humility as three types: intellectual, moral and personal.

How does God respond to humility? ›

God commands us to cultivate humility. “Humble yourselves (I Peter 5:6, James 4:10),” before God by accepting His Word and Providence without grumbling, and before other people by putting their interests above your own (Philippians 2:1-5). Coupled with humility is the fear of the Lord.

What is the spiritual principle of humility? ›

Humility is an attitude of spiritual modesty that comes from understanding our place in the larger order of things. It entails not taking our desires, successes, or failings too seriously. In the past decade in particular, psychologists have rediscovered the importance of humility.


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