Top 7 Bible Verses For Encouragement When Trying To Quit Smoking

by Jack Wellman · Print Print · Email Email

Here are 7 of my favorite Bible verses for those who want to quit smoking. What ones could you suggest?

Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things through him who strengthens me.”

What seems impossible to do without God’s help? Overcoming sin; and pretty much everything else! We can do all things through Christ who will strengthen us but the opposite must necessarily be true; we can do nothing without Him unless He strengthens us.  If you think you can overcome on your own, you are sorely mistaken.  I know of many who have needed God’s power through His Spirit to overcome smoking, drugs, pornography, alcohol or any other number of addictions but I have yet to meet one who did it successfully on their own.  Paul said that we can do all things but it must be through Christ, which means that it must be done through His power, because that is where the true strength lies…the power doesn’t lay within me to overcome anything.  This is why God is glorified; because it is through Christ and not through ourselves, that we can do all things because He is the One Who strengthens us because we don’t have that kind of strength within us.

Top 7 Bible Verses For Encouragement When Trying To Quit Smoking

Matthew 19:26 “But Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

I realize that the context of this is about the rich being able to enter heaven but the principle remains the same.  With human strength, it is impossible to overcome certain sins or addictions that have such a stronghold on us but with God, all things are possible.  With us, nothing is possible, but with God, all things are; at least in the context of it being in God’s will and we know that God’s will for our life is to live a life that is as free from encumbrances as possible.

John 15:5 “I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.”

If we are abiding in Christ that means that He’s abiding in us and when we are, we can bear much fruit but apart from Christ, we can’t do just a little or just a bit; we can do nothing apart from Him.  There is power in the Word of God (Rom 1:1610:17) and there is power in His Spirit (Acts 1:8) but apart from abiding in Him and in His Word, there is no power.  Jesus is proclaimed to be the Word (John 1:1, 14) and by abiding in Him and in the Word of God, you can faith because faith comes by hearing the Word (Rom 10:17) so if we are attached to the vine, that is Christ, we can bear godly fruit; if we’re not abiding or attached to the vine, Jesus says “you can do nothing” and that doesn’t mean “a little something.”

1 Corinthians 6:12 “All things are lawful for me, but not all things are helpful. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be dominated by anything.”

How many times when I was struggling with overcoming my addiction to marijuana, did I feel dominated by it?  All the time!  This verse never really made much sense to me until I realized that I was being dominated by a substance.  I was using marijuana and I had possession of it but it really had possession of me.  All things like smoking and drinking might be legal but that doesn’t mean it’s helpful.  Abortion is lawful but that certainly doesn’t mean it’s right!  Pray for God to release you from the bondage of nicotine addiction. Perhaps you can ask your doctor for the patch or whatever else he or she might suggest.  It might be lawful but is it helpful?

Hebrews 12:1 “Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.”

I used to run track in high school but during practice, we had to wear ankle weights.  These built up our leg muscles and our endurance but we never ran a race with them on.  We are in a race today…and we need to lay aside every weight that “clings so closely” to us so that we can “run with endurance the race that is set before us.”  This “weight,” whether it’s smoking, drinking, pornography, gambling, or any other addiction, can slow us down in the race and it can take away our testimony.  It can also make us feel so guilty that we won’t be witnessing for Christ because we’ll feel like hypocrites.  At least that is what many tell me.

1 Corinthians 10:23 “I have the right to do anything, you say–but not everything is beneficial. I have the right to do anything–but not everything is constructive.”

As I wrote earlier, even though we are under grace and not under law, we can’t use our liberty as a license to sin.  I am not saying smoking is sin.  For some they feel no guilt about it and I will not judge them if they don’t think it’s sin for them because we are all at different stages in our life and sanctification takes a lifetime.  Jesus did say “it is not what goes into the mouth that defiles a person, but what comes out of the mouth; this defiles a person” (Matt 15:11), although He was certainly not talking about smoking, but the principle is close to the same thing.

Ephesians 4:22 “You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires.”

We are new creations or creatures in Christ and that means “The old has gone, the new is here” (2 Cor 5:17) but it doesn’t happen overnight.  God will give us new desires and make us want to avoid sins but remember that Paul struggled with his human nature, writing “For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing” (Rom 7:19).  There are many so-called spiritual giants but they too struggled with sin and overcoming is always difficult but the good news is that you’re in a struggle because those who are not saved see no reason to struggle to overcome because they’re not convicted of their sins.

Conclusion

Peter said “We have left everything to follow you! What then will there be for us” (Matt 19:27)?  Jesus said “And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life” (Matt 19:29).  Focus on one thing at a time.  There are many Christian recovery programs that can help us overcome drugs, alcohol, pornography, gambling, and addictions to nicotine.  I am not classifying smoking in the same category with these other things but I am only suggesting that you can have the power of God’s Spirit, abiding in Christ and in His Word, the Bible, and joining a Christian addiction recovery group because all of these taken together can really help you.  When you do all these in combination, truly you can do all things because Christ Himself will strengthen you (Phi 4:13).

Here is some more encouragement for you: With God All Things Are Possible

Resource – Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

tera February 22, 2016 at 11:39 am

No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.
1 corinthians 10:13

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Brad May 1, 2016 at 2:48 pm

I like a couple passages for overcoming addictions. One is John chapter 5 verse 6. This guy had been crippled for 38 years and Jesus asks him “Wilt thou be made whole?” In other words, do you want to get better? Then the other verse is in Galatians chapter 5 verse 1. Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage. If smoking isn’t bondage, what is it. Thanks for the post.

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Jack Wellman May 1, 2016 at 5:22 pm

Thank you Brad for your comment. We could add dozens of other bondages if you are using these passages for that. How about wine, how about food (as in drunkenness or gluttony), how about gossip, adultery and more so. These are so much worse than smoking. CS Lewis and Charles Spurgeon loves their cigars and pipes yet God used these men mightily. To be “entangled again with the yoke of bondage” was about the law, like the Jews insistence about adding the Mosaic requirements to salvation, which is deadly serious and so the context of using this for smoking seems out of context my friend. Even so, thank you sir.

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Jacqueline Musick February 6, 2018 at 1:26 pm

How is wine, food etc. “so much worse than smoking”? Are we not the temples of God in which the Holy Spirit resides within? Smoking is still fulfilling the desires of the flesh in which we cannot walk/live by the spirit as God requires us to do.

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Jack Wellman February 6, 2018 at 2:03 pm

Yes Jacqueline, but we all sin and fall short of God’s glory and all of us still sin, but for some reasons, some believers take longer or have a more difficult time being freed from an addiction. That doesn’t mean they’re not a child of God, but like all of us, we’re in a process of sanctification and we will stop sinning only when Jesus returns or we pass into glory. Judging others over sins that they are trying to overcome doesn’t help them. The last thing they need is more shame. The Holy Spirit helps them and thru Christ they can overcome things, but some were raised in a home where there were many things they grew to become addicted to that their parents may have passed on. We walk by the Spirit, yes, but still stumble, as we all do. That includes me and that includes you. I cannot cast the first stone…unless it were at me! I do agree that I should not say it is worse than smoking. You are right. Thank you.

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Tinashe Radzokota August 12, 2016 at 3:12 pm

Thank you so much for the verses… very encouraging…

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Darlene Huckleberry October 13, 2016 at 9:04 pm

I wiuld like to receive your newsletter

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Jack Wellman October 13, 2016 at 10:01 pm

For us to be added to your emailing list, go to where it says “Free eBook for “15 Answers to Questions on Heaven, Hell, and End Time.” Do you see it on our main webpage? It’s about halfway down.

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Nachiappan Ravi October 18, 2016 at 8:30 pm

This verse will also help and encourage us to quit smoking
2 Corinthians 12:9 and King James Version (KJV)
9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness.

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Kat Golden November 19, 2016 at 2:46 pm

Amen to this, I’m currently trying to quit right now and constantly praying is helping me a lot!!! I’ve been a Christian since May 2016. You can read my conversion story at acceptjesusassavior.wordpress.com. I’ve gotten some really good feedback on it so far and I hope it can be used to encourage people to seek out God.
God Bless!!!

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Jennifer Jones January 6, 2017 at 6:06 pm

I’m so grateful I was able to find this article. I did a search for scriptures or prayers about quitting smoking, not knowing what I would find, and when I found this it helped me through a rough spot when I needed these scriptures.

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Tsekele October 30, 2017 at 5:28 pm

I’m trying to quit smoking for years now and I was checking my old dairy and I think I’ve been trying for more than 10 years now I’m hoping I can able to do it through this scriptures

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John Pandian March 13, 2018 at 8:32 am

Dear Sir,
I am John from Tamil Nadu, India.
Your article regarding quitting smoking is highly helpful to me. My sincere thanks to you. I am smoker more than 35 years. I have been struggling with this bad habit to quit with many steps. Everthing proved futile in my life. But I can’t till now.
But after reading your regarding this I feel peace at my heart. I will go to God and His verses without any self attempts.
Surely God alone will help me and relieve me from this chronic sin. Please pray for me.

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Jack Wellman March 13, 2018 at 9:21 am

Praying for you sir. Thank you for your comment.

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rhonda May 16, 2018 at 4:24 am

I want to quit smoking. I need help.

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Jack Wellman May 16, 2018 at 10:05 am

Praying now Rhonda.

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Katt Walsh March 30, 2018 at 11:12 pm

hi my name is Katt I’m 64 years old and I’ve been smoking since I was 17. I have tried and failed and tried and failed so many times to stop smoking. It’s very frustrating and I want to do it so badly because I want to please my Lord and Savior. Thank you for these verses and the encouragement I hear from others. I can’t quit trying and through the strength of Jesus I know that maybe this time I can overcome this thing. I cry myself to sleep at night sometimes because I feel so bad that somehow I’m letting him down. Thank you again for the scriptures I will use them and trust him

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Anita August 15, 2018 at 9:16 am

I have Stage III lung cancer. I am 66 years old and started smoking at 12 . I have tried to quit smoking for years with every known thing out there. Nicotine for some is as powerful an addiction as alcohol, drugs. The medical community has offered little assistance, eg. Group counseling, medication to help, if you started you should be able to put them down and quit, for some people yes, for me no. It’s been an on going struggle for years. John and Katt, I relate to your stories very well. I am at a crossroads, I now have cancer, so what does it matter if I smoke. Well the distress on my family has been tremendous. I have been torn and I needed something greater than myself to overcome this addition. I will keep this reading of scripture and let the Lord take over. I can’t do it alone, God’s scripture is there, but do I always listen? Thank you everyone for your comments and words of hope. Please pray for me. I am praying for all of you too.

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Lisa October 30, 2018 at 5:29 pm

This has been encouraging I have really felt I was alone and this smoking addiction only happened to me in not being able to stop. I hate it with a passion. Pray for me and I’m praying for you.

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Jack Wellman October 30, 2018 at 8:33 pm

Praying for you Lisa.

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