100 Bible Verses about Idleness

1 Timothy 5:13 ESV / 1,240 helpful votes

Besides that, they learn to be idlers, going about from house to house, and not only idlers, but also gossips and busybodies, saying what they should not.

Ecclesiastes 10:18 ESV / 1,113 helpful votes

Through sloth the roof sinks in, and through indolence the house leaks.

Proverbs 19:15 ESV / 1,053 helpful votes

Slothfulness casts into a deep sleep, and an idle person will suffer hunger.

Proverbs 13:4 ESV / 875 helpful votes

The soul of the sluggard craves and gets nothing, while the soul of the diligent is richly supplied.

2 Thessalonians 3:10 ESV / 858 helpful votes

For even when we were with you, we would give you this command: If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat.

2 Thessalonians 3:11 ESV / 822 helpful votes

For we hear that some among you walk in idleness, not busy at work, but busybodies.

Proverbs 31:27 ESV / 821 helpful votes

She looks well to the ways of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.

Proverbs 12:24 ESV / 718 helpful votes

The hand of the diligent will rule, while the slothful will be put to forced labor.

Proverbs 24:30-34 ESV / 708 helpful votes

I passed by the field of a sluggard, by the vineyard of a man lacking sense, and behold, it was all overgrown with thorns; the ground was covered with nettles, and its stone wall was broken down. Then I saw and considered it; I looked and received instruction. A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest, and poverty will come upon you like a robber, and want like an armed man.

Ezekiel 16:49 ESV / 701 helpful votes

Behold, this was the guilt of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had pride, excess of food, and prosperous ease, but did not aid the poor and needy.

Proverbs 20:13 ESV / 630 helpful votes

Love not sleep, lest you come to poverty; open your eyes, and you will have plenty of bread.

Proverbs 18:9 ESV / 624 helpful votes

Whoever is slack in his work is a brother to him who destroys.

Proverbs 20:4 ESV / 618 helpful votes

The sluggard does not plow in the autumn; he will seek at harvest and have nothing.

Proverbs 10:4 ESV / 550 helpful votes

A slack hand causes poverty, but the hand of the diligent makes rich.

Proverbs 14:23 ESV / 546 helpful votes

In all toil there is profit, but mere talk tends only to poverty.

Proverbs 21:25 ESV / 510 helpful votes

The desire of the sluggard kills him, for his hands refuse to labor.

1 Thessalonians 5:14 ESV / 509 helpful votes

And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all.

Matthew 12:36 ESV / 455 helpful votes

I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak,

2 Thessalonians 3:6 ESV / 434 helpful votes

Now we command you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you keep away from any brother who is walking in idleness and not in accord with the tradition that you received from us.

Proverbs 6:6 ESV / 412 helpful votes

Go to the ant, O sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise.

Matthew 20:6 ESV / 410 helpful votes

And about the eleventh hour he went out and found others standing. And he said to them, ‘Why do you stand here idle all day?’

Proverbs 12:27 ESV / 404 helpful votes

Whoever is slothful will not roast his game, but the diligent man will get precious wealth.

Proverbs 23:21 ESV / 386 helpful votes

For the drunkard and the glutton will come to poverty, and slumber will clothe them with rags.

Ephesians 4:28 ESV / 383 helpful votes

Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need.

Proverbs 26:13-16 ESV / 383 helpful votes

The sluggard says, “There is a lion in the road! There is a lion in the streets!” As a door turns on its hinges, so does a sluggard on his bed. The sluggard buries his hand in the dish; it wears him out to bring it back to his mouth. The sluggard is wiser in his own eyes than seven men who can answer sensibly.

Ecclesiastes 4:5 ESV / 380 helpful votes

The fool folds his hands and eats his own flesh.

Exodus 5:8 ESV / 352 helpful votes

But the number of bricks that they made in the past you shall impose on them, you shall by no means reduce it, for they are idle. Therefore they cry, ‘Let us go and offer sacrifice to our God.’

Proverbs 15:19 ESV / 348 helpful votes

The way of a sluggard is like a hedge of thorns, but the path of the upright is a level highway.

Proverbs 26:16 ESV / 345 helpful votes

The sluggard is wiser in his own eyes than seven men who can answer sensibly.

Proverbs 22:13 ESV / 344 helpful votes

The sluggard says, “There is a lion outside! I shall be killed in the streets!”

Acts 17:10-11 ESV / 338 helpful votes

The brothers immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea, and when they arrived they went into the Jewish synagogue. Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so.

1 Thessalonians 4:11-12 ESV / 335 helpful votes

And to aspire to live quietly, and to mind your own affairs, and to work with your hands, as we instructed you, so that you may walk properly before outsiders and be dependent on no one.

Luke 24:11 ESV / 328 helpful votes

But these words seemed to them an idle tale, and they did not believe them.

Proverbs 19:24 ESV / 327 helpful votes

The sluggard buries his hand in the dish and will not even bring it back to his mouth.

1 Timothy 5:8 ESV / 323 helpful votes

But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.

Proverbs 21:25-26 ESV / 323 helpful votes

The desire of the sluggard kills him, for his hands refuse to labor. All day long he craves and craves, but the righteous gives and does not hold back.

Matthew 20:3 ESV / 319 helpful votes

And going out about the third hour he saw others standing idle in the marketplace,

Exodus 5:17 ESV / 319 helpful votes

But he said, “You are idle, you are idle; that is why you say, ‘Let us go and sacrifice to the Lord.’

Proverbs 24:34 ESV / 293 helpful votes

And poverty will come upon you like a robber, and want like an armed man.

1 Corinthians 15:58 ESV / 291 helpful votes

Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.

Proverbs 10:26 ESV / 286 helpful votes

Like vinegar to the teeth and smoke to the eyes, so is the sluggard to those who send him.

2 Thessalonians 3:10-12 ESV / 280 helpful votes

For even when we were with you, we would give you this command: If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat. For we hear that some among you walk in idleness, not busy at work, but busybodies. Now such persons we command and encourage in the Lord Jesus Christ to do their work quietly and to earn their own living.

Proverbs 10:4-5 ESV / 273 helpful votes

A slack hand causes poverty, but the hand of the diligent makes rich. He who gathers in summer is a prudent son, but he who sleeps in harvest is a son who brings shame.

Proverbs 26:15 ESV / 263 helpful votes

The sluggard buries his hand in the dish; it wears him out to bring it back to his mouth.

Romans 12:11 ESV / 262 helpful votes

Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord.

1 Thessalonians 2:9 ESV / 256 helpful votes

For you remember, brothers, our labor and toil: we worked night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you, while we proclaimed to you the gospel of God.

Proverbs 31:10-31 ESV / 253 helpful votes

An excellent wife who can find? She is far more precious than jewels. The heart of her husband trusts in her, and he will have no lack of gain. She does him good, and not harm, all the days of her life. She seeks wool and flax, and works with willing hands. She is like the ships of the merchant; she brings her food from afar. ...

2 Thessalonians 3:6-18 ESV / 250 helpful votes

Now we command you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you keep away from any brother who is walking in idleness and not in accord with the tradition that you received from us. For you yourselves know how you ought to imitate us, because we were not idle when we were with you, nor did we eat anyone's bread without paying for it, but with toil and labor we worked night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you. It was not because we do not have that right, but to give you in ourselves an example to imitate. For even when we were with you, we would give you this command: If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat. ...

Acts 17:21 ESV / 249 helpful votes

Now all the Athenians and the foreigners who lived there would spend their time in nothing except telling or hearing something new.

1 Corinthians 5:9 ESV / 248 helpful votes

I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people—

2 Thessalonians 3:6-15 ESV / 247 helpful votes

Now we command you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you keep away from any brother who is walking in idleness and not in accord with the tradition that you received from us. For you yourselves know how you ought to imitate us, because we were not idle when we were with you, nor did we eat anyone's bread without paying for it, but with toil and labor we worked night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you. It was not because we do not have that right, but to give you in ourselves an example to imitate. For even when we were with you, we would give you this command: If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat. ...

2 Thessalonians 3:7-9 ESV / 246 helpful votes

For you yourselves know how you ought to imitate us, because we were not idle when we were with you, nor did we eat anyone's bread without paying for it, but with toil and labor we worked night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you. It was not because we do not have that right, but to give you in ourselves an example to imitate.

Isaiah 56:10 ESV / 246 helpful votes

His watchmen are blind; they are all without knowledge; they are all silent dogs; they cannot bark, dreaming, lying down, loving to slumber.

Proverbs 6:6-11 ESV / 238 helpful votes

Go to the ant, O sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise. Without having any chief, officer, or ruler, she prepares her bread in summer and gathers her food in harvest. How long will you lie there, O sluggard? When will you arise from your sleep? A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest, ...

Matthew 10:38 ESV / 233 helpful votes

And whoever does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me.

2 Thessalonians 3:12 ESV / 232 helpful votes

Now such persons we command and encourage in the Lord Jesus Christ to do their work quietly and to earn their own living.

Proverbs 6:9 ESV / 232 helpful votes

How long will you lie there, O sluggard? When will you arise from your sleep?

Proverbs 26:14 ESV / 226 helpful votes

As a door turns on its hinges, so does a sluggard on his bed.

Proverbs 24:30-31 ESV / 225 helpful votes

I passed by the field of a sluggard, by the vineyard of a man lacking sense, and behold, it was all overgrown with thorns; the ground was covered with nettles, and its stone wall was broken down.

Proverbs 6:10 ESV / 222 helpful votes

A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest,

John 3:16 ESV / 221 helpful votes

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

Proverbs 24:30 ESV / 213 helpful votes

I passed by the field of a sluggard, by the vineyard of a man lacking sense,

Ephesians 5:4 ESV / 206 helpful votes

Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving.

Acts 20:34-35 ESV / 204 helpful votes

You yourselves know that these hands ministered to my necessities and to those who were with me. In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’”

John 14:27 ESV / 203 helpful votes

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.

Proverbs 12:9 ESV / 194 helpful votes

Better to be lowly and have a servant than to play the great man and lack bread.

Revelation 1:1 ESV / 193 helpful votes

The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show to his servants the things that must soon take place. He made it known by sending his angel to his servant John,

2 Thessalonians 3:14 ESV / 192 helpful votes

If anyone does not obey what we say in this letter, take note of that person, and have nothing to do with him, that he may be ashamed.

Proverbs 10:5 ESV / 191 helpful votes

He who gathers in summer is a prudent son, but he who sleeps in harvest is a son who brings shame.

1 Timothy 6:20 ESV / 190 helpful votes

O Timothy, guard the deposit entrusted to you. Avoid the irreverent babble and contradictions of what is falsely called “knowledge,”

2 Timothy 1:7 ESV / 188 helpful votes

For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.

Luke 10:2 ESV / 185 helpful votes

And he said to them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.

John 14:6 ESV / 182 helpful votes

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

Proverbs 6:9-11 ESV / 178 helpful votes

How long will you lie there, O sluggard? When will you arise from your sleep? A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest, and poverty will come upon you like a robber, and want like an armed man.

2 Thessalonians 1:1-12 ESV / 175 helpful votes

Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy, To the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. We ought always to give thanks to God for you, brothers, as is right, because your faith is growing abundantly, and the love of every one of you for one another is increasing. Therefore we ourselves boast about you in the churches of God for your steadfastness and faith in all your persecutions and in the afflictions that you are enduring. This is evidence of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be considered worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you are also suffering— ...

Proverbs 26:13 ESV / 174 helpful votes

The sluggard says, “There is a lion in the road! There is a lion in the streets!”

James 5:12 ESV / 171 helpful votes

But above all, my brothers, do not swear, either by heaven or by earth or by any other oath, but let your “yes” be yes and your “no” be no, so that you may not fall under condemnation.

Psalm 23:1-6 ESV / 171 helpful votes

A Psalm of David. The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name's sake. 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. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. ...

Proverbs 28:19 ESV / 169 helpful votes

Whoever works his land will have plenty of bread, but he who follows worthless pursuits will have plenty of poverty.

Matthew 25:40 ESV / 163 helpful votes

And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’

Proverbs 24:33 ESV / 162 helpful votes

A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest,

1 Peter 4:15 ESV / 160 helpful votes

But let none of you suffer as a murderer or a thief or an evildoer or as a meddler.

1 Corinthians 5:1-13 ESV / 159 helpful votes

It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and of a kind that is not tolerated even among pagans, for a man has his father's wife. And you are arrogant! Ought you not rather to mourn? Let him who has done this be removed from among you. For though absent in body, I am present in spirit; and as if present, I have already pronounced judgment on the one who did such a thing. When you are assembled in the name of the Lord Jesus and my spirit is present, with the power of our Lord Jesus, you are to deliver this man to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, so that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord. ...

Proverbs 21:5 ESV / 155 helpful votes

The plans of the diligent lead surely to abundance, but everyone who is hasty comes only to poverty.

Philippians 4:13 ESV / 148 helpful votes

I can do all things through him who strengthens me.

Matthew 25:26 ESV / 142 helpful votes

But his master answered him, ‘You wicked and slothful servant! You knew that I reap where I have not sown and gather where I scattered no seed?

2 Corinthians 5:17 ESV / 137 helpful votes

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.

John 5:17 ESV / 137 helpful votes

But Jesus answered them, “My Father is working until now, and I am working.”

Hebrews 13:5 ESV / 126 helpful votes

Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

Romans 8:28 ESV / 115 helpful votes

And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.

Colossians 3:23 ESV / 107 helpful votes

Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men,

1 John 4:8 ESV / 104 helpful votes

Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.

Hebrews 6:12 ESV / 104 helpful votes

So that you may not be sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.

Ephesians 2:8-9 ESV / 104 helpful votes

For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.

2 Thessalonians 3:8-9 ESV / 103 helpful votes

Nor did we eat anyone's bread without paying for it, but with toil and labor we worked night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you. It was not because we do not have that right, but to give you in ourselves an example to imitate.

Matthew 16:24 ESV / 100 helpful votes

Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.

Ephesians 2:8 ESV / 99 helpful votes

For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God,

Matthew 25:18 ESV / 97 helpful votes

But he who had received the one talent went and dug in the ground and hid his master's money.

Proverbs 24:30-32 ESV / 97 helpful votes

I passed by the field of a sluggard, by the vineyard of a man lacking sense, and behold, it was all overgrown with thorns; the ground was covered with nettles, and its stone wall was broken down. Then I saw and considered it; I looked and received instruction.

Colossians 2:1-23 ESV / 96 helpful votes

For I want you to know how great a struggle I have for you and for those at Laodicea and for all who have not seen me face to face, that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of God's mystery, which is Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. I say this in order that no one may delude you with plausible arguments. For though I am absent in body, yet I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see your good order and the firmness of your faith in Christ. ...

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