Bible verses about

Jesus had little patience for self-centered people. He reserved some of His harshest words for the religious leaders who wanted only the best for themselves, comparing them to hidden graves (Luke 11:43-44).

When His disciples argued about who was the greatest, Jesus directed them to focus instead on who was considered the least (Luke 9:46-48).

The more we study God’s Word, the more it becomes clear that any desire to hoard worldly honors and possessions does not come from God. May we say with the Psalmist: “Turn my heart toward Your statues, not toward selfish gain” (Psalm 119:36).

A lack of selfishness is a hallmark of Christian humility and fellowship

Philippians 2:3-4

Doing nothing through rivalry or through conceit, but in humility, each counting others better than himself; each of you not just looking to his own things, but each of you also to the things of others.

Selfishness is the opposite of God's statutes

Psalm 119:36-37

Turn my heart toward your statutes, not toward selfish gain. Turn my eyes away from looking at worthless things. Revive me in your ways.

Beware preachers who are motivated by selfish ambition

Philippians 1:15-16

Some indeed preach Christ even out of envy and strife, and some also out of good will. The former insincerely preach Christ from selfish ambition, thinking that they add affliction to my chains.

Selfishness is an example of poor judgment

Proverbs 18:1-2

A man who isolates himself pursues selfishness, and defies all sound judgment. A fool has no delight in understanding, but only in revealing his own opinion.

Selfishness is not of God

James 3:14-15

But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your heart, don’t boast and don’t lie against the truth. This wisdom is not that which comes down from above, but is earthly, sensual, and demonic.

God promises judgment against those who selfishly think only of themselves

Ezekiel 34:8, 10

“As I live,” says the Lord GOD, “surely because my sheep became a prey, and my sheep became food to all the animals of the field, because there was no shepherd, and my shepherds didn’t search for my sheep, but the shepherds fed themselves, and didn’t feed my sheep.” The Lord GOD says: “Behold, I am against the shepherds. I will require my sheep at their hand, and cause them to cease from feeding the sheep. The shepherds won’t feed themselves any more. I will deliver my sheep from their mouth, that they may not be food for them.”

Jesus warned of the judgment of the selfish

Mark 12:38-40

In his teaching he said to them, “Beware of the scribes, who like to walk in long robes, and to get greetings in the marketplaces, and the best seats in the synagogues, and the best places at feasts: those who devour widows’ houses, and for a pretense make long prayers. These will receive greater condemnation.”

Selfishness leads to evil actions

James 3:16

For where jealousy and selfish ambition are, there is confusion and every evil deed.

Selfishness leads to unintended shame

Luke 14:11

For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.

Selfish ultimately ends in misery

Romans 2:8-9

But to those who are self-seeking, and don’t obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, will be wrath, indignation, oppression, and anguish on every soul of man who does evil, to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.

God warns against seeking greatness for myself

Jeremiah 45:5

“Do you seek great things for yourself? Don’t seek them; for, behold, I will bring evil on all flesh,” says the LORD; “but I will let you escape with your life wherever you go.”

Selfishness leads a list of terrible sins

2 Timothy 3:1-2

But know this: that in the last days, grievous times will come. For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy.