Has a Bible verse ever felt like a splash of cold water to your face as you read it? Or perhaps confused you?
This has happened to me more than a few times. I can quote many things Jesus said. I enjoy milling over the letters written by the Apostle Paul. I could read the lyrical prose of the Psalms daily, tapping into the heartfelt emotions coming through each word written by King David. And I’d be hard-pressed to find a Christian who couldn’t retell the creation story, Adam and Eve’s fall, Noah’s tale, Moses’ plight, and the Virgin Mary’s miraculous birth of our Savior.
While those well-known verses and Bible stories have changed my life, there are also some I’ve hardly heard addressed. In fact, several of my most profound epiphanies, the teachings that have lingered in my heart and mind for years, have come from verses not often expanded on during church.
Here are the most obscure Bible verses that have my changed my life:
1. Revelation 22:16: The Morning Star
“I, Jesus, have sent my angel to give you this testimony for the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, and the bright Morning Star.”
For over a decade, I’ve spent my mornings sitting quietly with God, allowing Him to ground me for the day ahead. I always pray, but each daybreak looks a little different as I try to follow God’s leading.
Sometimes I focus on reading Scripture, a devotional book, or Bible study. Then there are moments where I journal while singing worship songs to Jesus on my back porch. Occasionally, I’m in the zone, quiet as a mouse and still as a post, watching His creation—the birds, the chipmunks, the flowers, listening to Him whisper on the wind blowing through the branches or in the birdsong. The space, no matter where I am, becomes Holy Ground as I sit in His Presence.
But one thing’s for certain: every life-changing decision, answered prayer, or promise from God has come during this sacred time, making its importance to my daily routine immeasurable.
About a year ago, I was on my screened porch reading, and the verse Revelation 22:16 seemed to knock me upside the head. My steadfast resolve and deep desire to commune each morning with God finally made sense. Right there—in the last few verses of the Bible, like God wanted them to leave a forever stamp on our hearts—Jesus refers to Himself as the Morning Star… the One who is the Light of the world (John 8:12). This reference immediately reminded me of the sunrise.
I researched and found three times (Revelation 2:28, 22:16, 2 Peter 1:19) that Scripture tells us Jesus is the Morning Star. This verse has given new importance to my journey with God every morning. I feel confident He intended us all to carve out a sacred spot with Him as the sun makes its way up into the sky.
I hope you’ll read this verse, and the two others, then give some precious time as you wake to Him if you don’t already do so. You never know what He’s waiting to tell you or the blessing He wants to send your way if only you’d commit to spending time with Him, the Morning Star.
2. 1 Chronicles 4:9-10: The Prayer of Jabez
“Jabez was more honorable than his brothers. His mother had named him Jabez, saying, ‘I gave birth to him in pain.’ Jabez cried out to the God of Israel, ‘Oh, that you would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let your hand be with me, and keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain.’ And God granted his request.”
This two-sentence prayer (or one depending on which Bible translation you read) has become my mantra. Years ago, I attended what my church called a “Deep End” workshop. There, we were challenged to go “deeper” into Scripture to discover God’s Word. I’ve pushed most of the knowledge learned during those classes to the recesses of my mind, but I’ll never forget the teacher going down a bunny trail to tell us about the Prayer of Jabez. I’d never heard of Jabez or his prayer, and my teacher’s confidence in its life-changing ability had me intrigued.
1 Chronicles is not considered a popular book of the Bible because the first nine chapters list the family trees of the Hebrew tribes, beginning with Adam and descending for thousands of years. It’s a catalogue of unpronounceable names making a confusing mental map of the family genealogies. Now, God’s reason for documenting them is important. We (God’s people) had a Savior coming and needed to recognize Him when He arrived. Even still, I look at those names with a brush of the eye because they’re a jumbled mess to my brain.
This is why Jabez and his prayer stand out amongst the 500-plus names. He caused a break in the pattern.
Scripture says Jabez was an honorable man, meaning he was well-respected, held in high regard, and had great ethical conduct. I imagine he was a great patriarch, a wonderful husband, a kind father, and an honest businessman. God heard this noble man’s cry and gave him what he asked for—blessings and the enlarging of his territory, which I believe can be viewed also as his influence… his reach.
The sentences about Jabez got me thinking, then a few days after the Deep End class while in the checkout line of a thrift store, I spied Bruce Wilkerson’s book, The Prayer of Jabez (Breaking Through to the Blessed Life) on the shelf next to me.
You better believe I snatched it up and read it immediately. If God placed that coffee table book in my sightline only days after first hearing about this prayer, I knew it was something I needed to pay attention to.
I began to pray, “Oh, Lord, bless me indeed as I follow You and enlarge my territory for You. Keep Your powerful hand over me, then I won’t have any pain.” And God has granted me with blessings and opportunities I didn’t know I wanted.
Try it. Honor God as Jabez did and ask for blessings and territory with boldness. Watch and see what happens, then give glory to our faithful God. Oh, and get your hands on that book if you can. Read for yourself about Jabez and his daring, yet simple prayer.
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SOURCE: Crosswalk, Kristen Terrette