For years I never encountered a Christian that had a real answer for depression. They usually had some comfort to give, or perhaps some encouragement, but nobody had a real solution from the Bible to help with depression.
Can the Bible help with depression? Are there real solutions found in the Bible for depression? Solutions that actually work?
I’d like to show you that the Bible can not only help with depression, but even contains practical answers for depression that when acted upon, can lead you out of the pit and put an end to a life of depression. God always has a way of escape for you!
No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it. 1 Corinthians 10:13 NKJV
If you have struggled with depression, total freedom may sound too good to be true, but I want you to know that there is an escape. The God who created you knows how to help you! The Bible contains solutions for every thing you could possibly face in life, including depression.
The first thing you need to realize is that God does not want you depressed, nor does he condemn you for what you’re going through. He understands, and He loves you so much.
Nobody wants to see someone they love suffering from depression, and God loves you more than anyone else does. God wants to lead you out of the pit you are in and into a hopeful and happy life that He designed you for.
God’s will is for you to experience an abundant life, full of joy and peace. Jesus said He came for this very reason!
The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. John 10:10
It’s so important that we understand this verse. Satan is the one who comes to steal, kill and destroy from you- not God. Depression is a work of the enemy that steals your joy, your energy, and ultimately your life. God wants to restore to you the life you dream of, full of love and fulfillment.
I realize people’s situations are different. Some people have been through extensive trauma that has led to depression. I am not unaware of this. My husband is a survivor of horrendous childhood sexual abuse and trafficking. I have walked through his journey of restoration with him. I understand that healing from these types of traumas can be a process. No matter how bad the situation, the Word of God is stronger than even the worst trauma. All of hell cannot stand up against the Word of God.
God’s Word is powerful enough to convert, or restore the human soul back to its original condition, before any trauma occurred. If you have been through trauma like my husband, there is hope for you, and not only hope, but real solutions found in the Word of God.
The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul; The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple; Proverbs 19:7 NKJV
Depression does not come from God. It comes from the enemy. Now that we have that clear, let’s find out how the Bible can help with depression.
How the Bible Can Help with Depression
The book of Proverbs in the Bible tells us where depression comes from.
Anxiety in the heart of man causes depression, but a good word makes it glad. Proverbs 12:25
If you will acknowledge that the Bible is true and accept this verse, you will have made a huge first step in seeing freedom from depression!
This verse says that anxiety in the heart of man is what causes depression. The word heart in this verse could be interchanged with the word mind. Anxiety in the mind will cause depression. Anxiety is a form of fear, and we know that fear comes from the devil. If we know what is causing depression, we can attack it at the root.
Thankfully, this verse also gives us the solution to anxiety in the heart. A good word makes it glad! The good word is the Word of the Lord, and it will make your heart glad.
The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes; Psalm 19:8
How does anxiety get in your heart or mind? By listening to the wrong voices. If you are tuned in most of the time to the voices in the world, I can almost guarantee you will begin to experience anxiety in your heart, and ultimately some form of depression.
I am not saying it is your fault if you are experiencing anxiety or depression. You have an enemy who is working tirelessly to plant negative thoughts and beliefs in your mind, to ultimately destroy you (John 10:10). What I am saying is that the Lord has given us powerful tools to change what we are experiencing!
Let’s look at some of the practical steps the Bible gives us to get rid of the anxiety in our minds and the depression that it ultimately causes.
1. Acknowledge the Problem
The first step in seeing freedom from depression is to acknowledge that you’ve allowed your mind to pay more attention to the voices around you rather than God’s Word.
Even if you did it ignorantly, when you acknowledge that you’ve allowed yourself to focus on the wrong things, you simultaneously take your power back and acknowledge that you can change it. With God’s power, you are no longer a victim! You can begin to take back ownership of your mind.
2. Invite the Holy Spirit to be Your Counselor
Now that you’ve acknowledged the fact that you have some responsibility when it comes to your thoughts, you can invite the Holy Spirit to be your Counselor. Ask Him to begin to show you the anxious thoughts in your mind that have become strongholds.
A stronghold is simply a thought pattern that has become established. It’s a way of thinking that you’ve had for so long that you don’t even notice it anymore. This is why it takes the help of the Holy Spirit to expose it. These thought patterns have become so normal to you that you can’t even see them. They’ve become truth to you. The problem is, the enemy hides behind them to keep you in bondage.
For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, 2 Corinthians 10:4 NKJV
Strongholds usually begin in childhood, and you just think that way so long that it becomes normal. Perhaps a stronghold in your mind is that good things just don’t happen to you, or that you’re not smart enough to succeed, or that you’re ugly. You don’t even consciously realize you are believing it until the Holy Spirit shines light on it. It has become so normal that it’s just your truth. But it is actually a lie that the enemy uses to bring destruction in your life.
3. Interrupt Negative Thought Patterns and Replace with the Word of God
These strongholds cause anxiety in your mind and in your heart, which lead to depression. They are rooted in fear and perspectives that are contrary to God’s Word. God has given you the strategy to bring these strongholds down.
For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 NKJV
When the Holy Spirit exposes wrong thought patterns in your mind, you must interrupt them with the truth, the Word of God. This is what the Bible refers to as taking thoughts captive. With the help of the Holy Spirit, these ways of thinking are not going to go unnoticed anymore. The Holy Spirit will expose them so you can take them captive, or hold them hostage.
For example, If the stronghold you are bringing down is the belief that good things don’t happen to you, perhaps you would replace it with one of the following verses:
And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28 NKJV (Make the Word personal. Interrupt your negative thoughts by speaking out loud “I love God and am called according to His purpose, all things are working together for my good”.)
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; Psalm 23:6 NKJV (You speak out loud- “God’s goodness and mercy are following me right now!”.)
The Lord will perfect that which concerns me; Your mercy, O Lord, endures forever; Psalm 138:8 NKJV (You speak out loud- The Lord is perfecting everything that concerns me”.)
There are many more verses you could interrupt this wrong belief with. Ask the Holy Spirit to show a specific truth about whatever wrong thought pattern He has shown you.
You interrupt your thoughts by speaking out loud. No matter what you are thinking about, when you begin to speak out loud, the attention of your mind is shifted from the thoughts to what you are saying. This is literally how you renew your mind and see transformation in your life.
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 12:2 NKJV
God’s perfect will for you is a life free from depression. This verse says that the renewing of your mind is how you experience it. You can literally transform your mind, your emotions, and your life by taking thoughts captive and replacing them with God’s truth. This is a process, but if you don’t give up, you will see the transformation from depression to a life of joy.