21 invaluable exhortations from Paul’s letters
When we apply these exhortations to our lives we get life-changing results.
Paul’s letters were written to the churches that he worked with when the gospel was just starting to be spread to the world. Every exhortation he wrote there was revealed to him by God, and that’s why every word is still relevant and applicable to our lives in our day and age. When we practice these words, things happen in our lives. We make progress in, the fruits of the Spirit grow, we’re transformed, and we get eternal life within us!
Here we’ve collected just a few of his most essential exhortations:
Relationships with others
Paul’s letters are full of counsel about interactions with people. Have you taken these exhortations entirely to heart and applied them to your own relationships? Have you noticed how this affects them? Can you testify that your relationships are getting better and better because of it?”
“Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good.” Romans 12:9-21.
“Therefore let us not judge one another anymore, but rather resolve this, not to put a stumbling block or a cause to fall in our brother’s way.” Romans 14:13.
“Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. And be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.” Ephesians 4:31-32.
“Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.” Philippians 2:3-4
“Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, long; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do. But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection.” Colossians 3:12-14.
Read more about how to have good relationships here: The secret to conflict-free relationships
Deadand alive to Christ
Have you reckoned yourself dead to sin and alive to Christ? Have you considered what this means? Sacrificing your own will, your ownand desires, so that you gain the virtues of Christ is the whole point of a ’s life.
“Likewise you also, reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord. Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts. And do not present your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin, but present yourselves to God as being alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God.” Romans 6:11-13.
“I beseech your therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” Romans 12:1-2.
“Always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. For we who live are always delivered to death for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal.” 2 Corinthians 4:8-11.
“And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.” Galatians 5:24-25.
“If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.” Colossians 3:1-3.
Read more about what it means to reckon yourself dead to sin here: How can we reckon ourselves dead to sin?
Have you worked with these things in your life? Have you seen your life change because of it? Pick a couple of these exhortations from Paul’s letters to focus on over the days and weeks ahead, and see what transformative results they bring.
“But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver.” 2 Corinthians 9:6-7.
“Giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Ephesians 5:20.
“Do all things without complaining and disputing, that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world.” Philippians 2:14-15.
“Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving.” Colossians 4:2.
“That you also aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you.” 1 Thessalonians 4:11.
“Be anxious for nothing, 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 minds through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7.
“Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.” Philippians 4:8.
“In all things showing yourself to be a pattern of good works; in doctrine showing integrity, reverence, incorruptibility.” Titus 2:7.
Exhortations to Timothy
Timothy was a young man, but Paul called him his most trusted co-worker! No matter what age you are, following this advice will lead you to also be a co-worker for the gospel. You can be example to everyone you meet in life!
“Let no one despise your youth, but be an example to the believers in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity. Till I come, give attention to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine.” 1 Timothy 4:12-13.
“Take heed to yourself and to the doctrine. Continue in them, for in doing this you will save both yourself and those who hear you.” 1 Timothy 4:16.
“But you, O man of God, flee these things and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, gentleness. Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called and have confessed the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.” 1 Timothy 6:11-12.
When we adhere to all these life-giving exhortations from the Paul, we see that living as a Christian is definitely not a passive life! It means zealously taking drastic measures to live them out, but we find that when we do this, we get spectacular results!
If you enjoyed this article about the exhortations in Paul’s letters, you may be interested in reading some of our Bible studies and commentaries, or the following selected articles:
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.