Biblical Standards for Living
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Biblical Standards for Living


As Christians, we are called to live according to God’s standards, not the standards of the world. The Bible provides us with clear guidance on how we should conduct ourselves in all areas of life.

Living biblically requires commitment and intentionality, but it leads to great blessing and fulfillment. In this post, we will explore key biblical principles for faithful Christian living.

Key Takeaways:

  • Seek righteousness, not worldly wealth
  • Practice integrity and honesty in all dealings
  • Honor authorities and submit to government
  • Care for the poor and marginalized
  • Love others deeply through service and sacrifice
  • Pursue sexual purity and faithfulness in marriage
  • Speak truthfully and avoid gossip or slander
  • Work diligently and avoid idleness
  • Be content and avoid covetousness and greed
  • Forgive others as you have been forgiven

Live for Eternal Treasure, Not Worldly Wealth

A foundational principle of biblical living is to orient our lives around eternal, spiritual treasures rather than temporal, worldly wealth. Jesus told us to “store up for yourselves treasures in heaven” and warned against storing up earthly treasures (Matthew 6:19-20). The apostle Paul said to set our hearts and minds on things above rather than earthly things (Colossians 3:2).

This requires us to evaluate our priorities. Are we working, planning, and spending in ways that further God’s kingdom and produce eternal fruit? Or are we consumed by material comforts, social status, and worldly aspirations?

Biblically, wealth is not condemned outright. But Scripture warns strongly against making it the focus of our lives or trusting in it rather than God (1 Timothy 6:17). We should hold worldly wealth loosely and use it generously to bless others. Our security and contentment should come from our relationship with Christ.

Live with Integrity in All Your Dealings

Integrity and honesty should characterize all our dealings, both in business and personal relationships. The Bible condemns dishonest practices like lying, stealing, and cheating. “The Lord detests lying lips, but he delights in people who are trustworthy” (Proverbs 12:22).

As Christians, we must be people of our word. We should pay our bills on time, fulfill our obligations, and avoid misleading sales tactics or exaggeration. Paul instructs, “Provide things honest in the sight of all men” (Romans 12:17 KJV). This applies even in little details that others may not notice. God sees and cares about honesty in the small things.

Living with integrity may not always seem rewarding in the moment. There are often temptations to cut corners, shade the truth, or compromise principles for gain. However, God honors and blesses uprightness. Proverbs 10:9 says, “Whoever walks in integrity walks securely, but whoever takes crooked paths will be found out.” Integrity provides a clear conscience and strong character that is worth far more than any worldly profit.

Submit Humbly to Governing Authorities

A biblical worldview recognizes that all authority derives from God. Therefore, Scripture instructs believers to submit respectfully to earthly authorities such as government unless they require us to directly disobey God. Romans 13:1-2 says, “Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves.”

This does not mean agreeing with or condoning every action of government. We can work nonviolently to change unjust laws or policies. But the Bible prohibits speaking evil of rulers or fostering rebellion. We should be model citizens as far as conscience allows, showing respect for officials and praying for their wisdom (1 Timothy 2:1-3). God is ultimately sovereign over human government, so we can trust His purposes even under imperfect officials.

Love and Serve the Poor and Marginalized

Concern for the poor and vulnerable is a defining trait of godly living in Scripture. We are commanded to care for orphans and widows (James 1:27), be generous and share with the needy (1 John 3:17), and defend the oppressed (Isaiah 1:17). Jesus said that serving “the least of these” is equivalent to serving Him (Matthew 25:31-46).

Biblical charity is not just a feeling of compassion but an act. John says, “If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person?” (1 John 3:17) Caring for the poor includes both meeting immediate needs and advocating systemic changes to provide more just opportunities in society.

Serving the marginalized demonstrates Christ’s sacrificial love in action. It develops in us His heart of compassion. As Proverbs 19:17 says, “Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will reward them for what they have done.” The Bible calls all Christians to active, self-denying service on behalf of the vulnerable.

Love Others Through Sacrificial Giving and Service

Christ-like love should be the defining mark of Christians in how we treat others (John 13:34-35). This goes beyond sentiment to practical service and sacrifice. Scripture calls us to give generously and share with those in need (Hebrews 13:16). The early church modeled astonishing generosity and care for each other (Acts 2:44-45).

True biblical love is manifested in laying down our lives for others. As Jesus said, “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one???s life for one???s friends” (John 15:13). Paul echoes this: “Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves” (Romans 12:10). This contradicts the world’s self-centeredness. We are called to consider others’ needs more important than our own.

This kind of radical other-focused love reflects Christ’s love for us. It witnesses powerfully to nonbelievers. And it fulfills the second greatest commandment: “Love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:39). Biblical standards call all Christians to profound love and service toward others.

Maintain Sexual Purity and Faithfulness in Marriage

One area where biblical standards starkly contrast with cultural norms today is sexual ethics. Scripture consistently calls for purity in both thought and deed. Jesus equated lust with adultery (Matthew 5:27-28) and taught that speaking in crude sexual terms defiles a person (Matthew 15:19-20). Fornication (sexual relations outside marriage) is consistently prohibited (1 Corinthians 6:18; Galatians 5:19).

Marriage is honored throughout Scripture as the sole appropriate context for sexual intimacy. Hebrews 13:4 calls the marriage bed “undefiled” but warns that sexually immoral people will be judged by God. God designed marriage between one man and one woman to reflect the beautiful covenant relationship between Christ and the church (Ephesians 5:31-32).

Faithfulness within marriage is commanded clearly for both spouses. Adultery is strongly condemned (Exodus 20:14). Husbands are instructed, “be faithful to your wife” (Proverbs 5:15-20). God views vows as sacred and binding. Biblical standards call for purity before marriage and exclusive faithfulness after marriage.

Speak Truthfully and Avoid Gossip or Slander

Our speech should build others up, not tear them down. Scripture commends speaking the truth in love (Ephesians 4:15). But it strongly warns against gossip, slander, lying, and sowing discord (Proverbs 6:19, Proverbs 16:28, Ephesians 4:25). “The words of a gossip are like choice morsels; they go down to the inmost parts” (Proverbs 18:8).

Therefore, we must restrain careless speech and think carefully about how our words affect others. This includes avoiding insults (Matthew 5:22), obscenity, and crude joking (Ephesians 5:4). “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs” (Ephesians 4:29).

Speaking truthfully also means keeping our word when we make commitments or vows. Jesus said “Simply let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No’; anything beyond this comes from the evil one” (Matthew 5:37). Therefore, as followers of Christ we must practice truthful and uplifting speech that builds up community.

Work Diligently and Avoid Idleness

Scripture affirms the value and dignity of work. After placing Adam in the Garden of Eden, “The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it” (Genesis 2:15). We were made by a working God for purposeful labor. Thessalonians says, “If a man will not work, he shall not eat” (2 Thessalonians 3:10).

Of course, we must balance work with physical and spiritual rest. The fourth commandment requires a Sabbath day of holy rest (Exodus 20:8-11). Jesus modeled withdrawing frequently for prayer and renewal. But extended idleness and laziness goes against biblical values.

Proverbs warns, “Long hours of work earn you more money; being lazy makes you poor” (Proverbs 14:23 GNT). Paul instructs believers “to aspire to live quietly, and to mind your own affairs, and to work with your hands, as we instructed you” (1 Thessalonians 4:11). God made us for purposeful contribution through work.

Be Content and Avoid Covetousness and Greed

Despite living in a consumer culture bent on manufacturing discontent, Christians should strive to be content with simple provision (1 Timothy 6:6-8). The writer of Hebrews instructs, “Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have” (Hebrews 13:5).

Covetousness and greed are strongly condemned in Scripture. They reflect dissatisfaction with God’s provision and a grasping after more than we need. We begin desiring things just because others have them. But “godliness with contentment is great gain” (1 Timothy 6:6). And Jesus asked, “What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul?” (Matthew 16:26)

Biblical contentment keeps worldly wealth and possessions in proper perspective. Any resources at our disposal are to be stewarded for God’s purposes, not hoarded for selfish gain or status. God graciously supplies all our needs; anything beyond that should be shared generously rather than consumed on vanity.

Forgive Others Freely As God Forgave You

Because we have been freely forgiven in Christ, we must extend that same grace to others who wrong or offend us. Colossians 3:13 says, “Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” This applies to both minor slights and severe offenses.

Forgiveness does not necessarily mean trust is instantly restored. But it does release the other person from guilt for their wrong and free ourselves from resentment that poisons the soul. Bitterness when held onto provides an opening for the enemy in our lives. As Jesus said, “If you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins” (Matthew 6:14-15).

For the Christian, forgiveness should characterize our response to injustice or mistreatment, just as it characterizes God’s treatment of us. We can set healthy boundaries without holding on to bitterness. This reflects the love and mercy of Christ at work within us.


Living biblically requires rejecting the pattern of the world and embracing God’s standards in every area of life. This leads to great reward. “No good thing does the LORD withhold from those who walk uprightly” (Psalm 84:11). As Psalm 1:1-3 says, “Blessed is the one who walks not in step with the wicked or stands in the way that sinners take or sits in the company of mockers, but whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and night. That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season.”

May we meditate on God’s word and allow the Holy Spirit to align our thoughts, words, and deeds with His standards. This honors Christ and helps others see the beauty of living for God’s glory.

Pastor Duke Taber
Pastor Duke Taber

Pastor Duke Taber

All articles have been written or reviewed by Pastor Duke Taber.
Pastor Duke Taber is an alumnus of Life Pacific University and Multnomah Biblical Seminary.
He has been in pastoral ministry since 1988.
Today he is the owner and managing editor of 3 successful Christian websites that support missionaries around the world.
He is currently starting a brand new church in Mesquite NV called Mesquite Worship Center, a Non-Denominational Spirit Filled Christian church in Mesquite Nevada.