What Does the Bible Say About Survival?
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What Does the Bible Say About Survival?

Survival. It’s something we all think about from time to time. Will I have enough food and water? Will I be able to protect myself and my family? Will I be able to withstand life’s storms?

As Christians, we know that true survival depends not just on meeting our physical needs, but also on nurturing our spiritual lives. The Bible has a lot to say about how we can survive—and thrive—both physically and spiritually. In this post, we’ll explore some key Biblical principles for survival.

Key Takeaways:

  • God promises to provide for our needs if we seek His kingdom first
  • We must depend on God rather than our own understanding
  • God can make a way even when there seems to be no way
  • We are called to be wise stewards of the resources God gives us
  • We must put on the full armor of God to withstand spiritual attacks
  • God delivers us from our fears and gives us strength
  • Perseverance through hardship develops godly character within us

God Promises to Provide for Our Needs

One of the most comforting scriptures about survival is Matthew 6:31-33:

“Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” (NKJV)

This tells us that as we seek God and live according to His principles, He promises to provide everything we need to survive—food, water, clothing, and more. Survival starts with trusting that God will take care of us, rather than relying on our own efforts alone.

The book of Philippians reiterates this teaching:

“And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:19 NKJV)

God promises to meet our needs out of His lavish abundance. As we follow Him, we can trust Him to give us the provisions we require to survive and flourish.

Depend on God Rather Than Our Own Understanding

In our modern self-reliant culture, it’s tempting to try to survive by our own wits and strength. But the Bible tells us to rely on God’s wisdom over our own.

Proverbs 3:5-6 offers this advice:

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.” (NKJV)

This verse reminds us that rather than trusting in our limited human understanding, we are to have complete confidence in God who knows all things. He will guide us on the right path if we submit our ways to Him.

Later, in Jeremiah 17:5, the prophet warns:

“Cursed is the man who trusts in man and makes flesh his strength, whose heart departs from the Lord.”

Relying solely on ourselves or other people is a curse because only God has the power to ultimately sustain us. We must turn to Him alone as we seek to survive, letting His wisdom—not our own—direct our path.

God Can Make a Way Where There Seems to Be No Way

Sometimes we look at difficult circumstances and can’t imagine any way to survive. But what seems impossible for us is possible with God!

In Exodus 14, the Israelites were trapped between Pharaoh’s army and the Red Sea. Certain death seemed imminent. But God miraculously parted the waters, allowing the Israelites to cross safely to the other side.

Exodus 14:13-14 records God’s promise in the face of impossible odds:

And Moses said to the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord, which He will accomplish for you today. For the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall see again no more forever. The Lord will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace.”

Rather than panicking, the Israelites were to trust that God would deliver them, even though they saw no possible avenue of escape. And He did!

No matter how desperate our circumstances may seem, God promises to make a way for us, just as He did for the Israelites at the Red Sea. We can trust Him to lead us to survival even when it feels impossible.

Be a Wise Steward of Resources

Although God promises to provide what we need, the Bible also says we have a responsibility to be wise stewards of what He gives us. Survival requires making the most of our resources.

In the Parable of the Talents (Matthew 25:14-30), Jesus tells of a man who entrusted his servants with money to manage while he was away. Two servants invested and multiplied what they were given, while a third hid his share out of fear. When the master returned, he rewarded the stewards who maximized his resources.

This parable reminds us to avoid squandering what God provides. Instead, we should find ways to carefully steward resources for long-term sustainability. This might mean reusing, repurposing, repairing, or rationing as needed. With wisdom and planning, even limited supplies can go far.

Proverbs 21:20 drives home this point:

“There is desirable treasure, and oil in the dwelling of the wise, but a foolish man squanders it.” (NKJV)

Ask God for discernment to manage resources well so that you can survive times of scarcity.

Put On the Full Armor of God

Physical survival depends on meeting tangible needs. But we must not forget that life is also a spiritual battle. The Bible tells us we can only survive if we put on God’s full armor.

Ephesians 6:10-18 describes the spiritual armor God gives us, including the belt of truth, breastplate of righteousness, shoes of gospel peace, shield of faith, helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit which is the word of God.

With this armor, we are empowered to withstand any spiritual attacks from the enemy and emerge victorious. Verse 13 reminds us to “take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.”

By putting on God’s full armor each day, we protect ourselves from the spiritual forces that try to bring us down. With the belt of truth, we can survive the enemy’s lies. The breastplate and helmet safeguard us from doubts about God’s promises and salvation. The sword enables us to claim scripture to counter attacks.

Make sure to arm yourself spiritually each day so that you can survive and thrive!

God Delivers Us From Our Fears

Fear and anxiety can paralyze us, preventing survival. But God promises deliverance from all fears as we trust in Him.

Isaiah 41:10 assures us:

“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.”

God is greater than anything we may fear—hardship, danger, or uncertainty. He gives us strength, protection and help so we can face trials without being controlled by anxiety.

Later in Isaiah 41:13, He reiterates:

“For I, the Lord your God, will hold your right hand, saying to you, ‘Fear not, I will help you.’”

Whatever you may be facing, remember that God is holding your hand and saying “Fear not.” He will deliver you from fear so that you can survive and keep moving forward.

God Gives Us Strength to Endure

Survival requires not just meeting immediate needs, but having the endurance to last through extended seasons of hardship. God promises strength to persevere.

Isaiah 40:29 states:

“He gives power to the weak, and to those who have no might He increases strength.” (NKJV)

When we recognize our own weakness, God infuses us with His power and strength. This enables us to withstand and endure situations that seem impossible in our own ability.

Isaiah 40:31 goes on to say:

“But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.”

Rather than desperately striving in our own limited strength, God calls us to wait on Him and receive renewed strength. This will empower us to not only survive but to thrive as we “mount up with wings like eagles.” We can soar above our circumstances knowing God gives us the endurance we need.

No matter how long your hardship lasts, God has unlimited strength to give you to keep going. Rely on Him to renew you.

Perseverance Develops Character

Surviving through difficulty requires perseverance. But the Bible tells us that perseverance through hardship also develops godly character in us over time.

Romans 5:3-4 expresses it this way:

“And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope.” (NKJV)

Without persevering through trials, we lack the opportunity to develop perseverance, character, and hope. Survival requires pressing on so that these fruits can grow within us.

James 1:2-4 echoes this:

“My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.”

Though trials are painful, they are opportunities for spiritual growth. As we let patience do its work in us, God shapes more of His character in us—the ultimate key to survival.

Hardship prepares us for greater things ahead. Perseverance through survival develops character, maturity, and hope within us.

In Summary

Survival is about far more than just meeting physical needs. According to the Bible, true survival depends on:

  • Seeking God first and trusting His promises to provide
  • Depending on His wisdom rather than our limited understanding
  • Believing He can make a way even when no way seems possible
  • Being wise stewards of the resources He gives us
  • Putting on His full armor to defeat spiritual attacks
  • Relying on Him to deliver us from all fears
  • Receiving strength from Him to endure through all trials
  • Developing godly character as we persevere through hardship

Take comfort that He who promises survival will provide you with everything needed to endure and overcome challenges. Keep your eyes fixed on Him—your trustworthy survival guide both now and for eternity.

You will survive and thrive as you stay anchored in Him!

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.