Bible Question:

Where in the Bible can we find, “God helps those who help themselves?” Inferring that we need to help ourselves and not depend totally on Him to provide our total earthly/human existence?

Bible Answer:

There is no verse in the Bible that says, “God helps those who help themselves.” Furthermore, the principle behind the statement does not exist in scripture. In fact, Scripture teaches the opposite . . .

He Frustrates the Plans of The Peoples

Seek The Lord Continually

Throughout the Bible God urges us to seek Him, to do His will and not our will. For example, in 2 Chronicles 12:14 we are told that King Rehoboam did evil because He did not seek the Lord. He just did what he wanted.

He did evil because he did not set his heart to seek the LORD. 2 Chronicles 12:14 (NASB)

2 Chronicles 12:14 was a negative example. Psalm 105:4 is a positive example. Here we are told to continually seek Him.

Seek the LORD and His strength;
Seek His face continually. Psalm 105:4 (NASB)

If we are continually seeking Him, then we will be continually seeking His direction also. Proverbs 3:6 is another passage that is more specific since it speaks of a close relationship with God. It says,

In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:6 (NASB)

The Hebrew word for “acknowledge” is derek. It has the idea of knowing. If we know Him deeply and seek Him, then He will guide us. He will not help those who do not know Him or seek Him. We are told to acknowledge Him in every path we take.

God helps those who help themselves — is not true

Desire The Lord’s Will

In the Lord’s Prayer, Jesus tells us to pray that the Lord’s will is done on earth as His will is done in heaven. It speaks of a heart attitude.

Your kingdom come.
Your will be done,
On earth as it is in heaven. Matthew 6:10 (NASB)

Then James 4:13-16 warns believers to not make plans without first acknowledging that your actions, goals, desires and plans may not be God’s will for you.

Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow, we shall go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit.” Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away. Instead, you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and also do this or that.” But as it is, you boast in your arrogance; all such boasting is evil. James 4:13-16 (NASB)

Here God says that it is arrogant, boastful and evil to plan your own life without depending on Him. We should never plan to do something without depending on Him. We need to seek His will in our life and follow it.

The Word of God provides guidance. How often we ignore God! We need to listen to Him and trust Him. Scripture teaches us that God does help every believer do His will—to walk by faith, walk in the Spirit live in the Spirit and live by faith. That is the message of Philippians 1:6; 2:12-13.

PassageBasic Idea
Romans 1:17Walk by faith
Galatians 5:16Walk by the Spirit
Galatians 5:25Live by the Spirit
2 Corinthians 5:7 Live by faith not by sight
Hebrews 10:38Live by faith in God

God does not us to be lazy and just wait around for God to give us a holy zap to give us direction and get us going. God has given us a mind for a reason. Listen to God’s words in 2 Thessalonians and 1 Timothy,

For we hear that some among you are leading an undisciplined life, doing no work at all, but acting like busybodies. Now such persons we command and exhort in the Lord Jesus Christ to work in quiet fashion and eat their own bread.  2 Thessalonians 3:11-12 (NASB)

But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith, and is worse than an unbeliever. 1 Timothy 5:8 (NASB)

These passages imply we are to work. It is God’s will that we feed ourselves and our family. Yet, we are to depend on Him in all that we do. We are to desire His will to be done in our lives and to seek His will. God wants us to be totally dependent on Him. He wants to us to do His will.

Suggested Links:

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