Bible verses on shame can help you cast aside the heaviness of toxic shame and choose faith and hope instead. God sees every part of your shame and wants to set you free from it. He will help you overcome it as you walk through the valleys of suffering toward healing. When you read and apply God’s word, you can reprogram your thoughts to choose to hope in God instead of wading into the toxicity of shame.
What Does the Bible Say About Shame?
Jesus died on the cross and rose from the grave to set you free from every shameful thing His people ever said or did. Those shameful deeds no longer hold power over them because Jesus’ sacrifice on their behalf sets them free from toxic shame.
Yet it’s common for people who have trusted Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior to still struggle with feelings of shame. Shame is one of the devil’s favorite weapons, and he wants us to be in bondage to our past mistakes. To fully overcome toxic shame, we must fully receive God’s grace and ask for his help again and again.
You can start your journey of freedom from shame by replacing shameful thoughts with the hope-filled truths of God’s word. The following verses are powerful tools to help you on your freedom journey. When you are tempted to wallow in toxic shame, meditate on one of the verses to be set back on the road to freedom that God has promised for you.
I trust in you; do not let me be put to shame, nor let my enemies triumph over me. – Psalm 25:2, NIV
Your roots of toxic shame may be linked to untruthful, unfair, or unkind things people have said about you or done against you. Their voices may replay in your head, tempting you to believe that you’re not good enough. But when you trust in God for your identity instead of in what your enemies said and did against you, God will silence those past voices and help you triumph through his power.
No one who hopes in you will ever be put to shame, but shame will come on those who are treacherous without cause. – Psalm 25:3, NIV
God will begin to erase your shame one day at a time when you decide to put your hope in him and trust him for your future. Hope kills shame because it enables you to believe that your past no longer defines you. The hope of newness of life in Christ can help you overcome toxic shame.
Those who look to him are radiant; their faces are never covered with shame. – Psalm 34:5, NIV
Joy is another powerful virtue you can use to overcome shame. No matter our circumstances, we can have joy in the Lord because he is always good. Focus your thoughts on the joy you can find in the Lord every day to recover from your past. He will help you be radiant with joy instead of being weighed down by shame.
In you, Lord, I have taken refuge; let me never be put to shame. – Psalm 71:1, NIV
Are you looking to escape from shame? God offers to be your refuge or hiding place when you are running from shame. When shameful thoughts attack you, draw close to the Lord and he will give you comfort.
Take away the disgrace I dread, for your laws are good. – Psalm 119:39, NIV
You can abandon shame when you aren’t continuing down sinful paths. You can meditate on God’s word to learn the pathways that lead to life and follow those paths instead. Call out to God for help every time you’re tempted to revisit those pathways toward shameful activities.
Instead of your shame, you will receive a double portion, and instead of disgrace, you will rejoice in your inheritance. And so, you will inherit a double portion in your land, and everlasting joy will be yours. – Isaiah 61:7, NIV
Someday you will be able to look back and see how God honored you rather than left you stuck in shame, and that will be a day to rejoice. God wants a different future for you, one that includes great honor, joy, and prosperity. Receive the honor God wants to give you and leave your shame in the past as you step into the abundant life Christ provides.
As Scripture says, “Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame.” – Romans 10:11, NIV
Your shame will have less of a hold on you the more you put your trust in God’s promises. Study God’s word often so you can store in your heart the truth to overcome the lies of shame. Your faith will be renewed each day through Bible study and prayer, and God will give you hope and comfort as you lean on him for help.
For in Scripture it says: “See, I lay a stone in Zion, a chosen and precious cornerstone, and the one who trusts in him will never be put to shame.” – 1 Peter 2:6, NIV
Jesus is the cornerstone of our faith, the one whom we can trust to help us overcome our toxic shame once and for all. Look to Jesus as your example by reading the gospels. As you’re studying his example, you will learn what sins to avoid and what virtues to pursue. The closer you get to Jesus, the more real desire to please him in your thoughts, words, and actions.
And now, dear children, continue in him, so that when he appears we may be confident and unashamed before him at his coming. – 1 John 2:28, NIV
Your shame creates a barrier between you and God, but God wants to embrace you as His dear child. The more trust you put in God as your father, the more courage you will have to overcome your shame and break free from the toxicity of your past.
Christian Counseling for Toxic Shame
Toxic shame is a multilayered problem with many elements. Your shame may be layered with lies people told you, false teachings of people in authority, or damaging cultural views. Your shame may also be linked to guilt over things that you have done, or also to false guilt over things that weren’t even wrong. It’s difficult to sort all this out on your own.
Many people turn to a Christian counselor for help in overcoming toxic shame. You can meditate on the Bible verses above to start the process of recovery, but don’t wait to seek professional help from a Christian counselor. Your counselor is equipped with the skills to help you uproot toxic shame and choose a new path of healing.
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