One of the foundational passages about free will is found in Deuteronomy 30:19, where Moses implores the Israelites to choose life by obeying God’s commandments, thus emphasizing the power of their choices in shaping their outcomes. This verse highlights the idea that individuals have the freedom to make decisions, and those decisions have real consequences.
Throughout the Bible, several other verses reinforce the notion of free will. For instance, in Joshua 24:15, Joshua challenges the people of Israel to decide whom they will serve, either the gods of the surrounding nations or the Lord
The Bible is full of verses that talk about free will. Here are some of my favorite ones:
“The Lord has done everything for us, and so we can do everything through him who gives us strength.” (Philippians 4:13)
“And now, O Lord our God, may your name be praised forever and ever, for you have done all these things for us.” (Nehemiah 9:5)
“So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; it shall not return to Me void, but it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.” (Isaiah 55:11)
“So then it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God who has mercy.” (Romans 9:16)
Bible Verses About Free Will
Many Christian churches and denominations have different views on free will. While it’s easy to become confused on how God’s control and our own free will interact, we can trust the Word of God and know that what He has told us in the Bible is true. These Bible verses about free will show us that we have the ability to choose and have faith in God, being secure in our eternal life in heaven, or we can choose to turn from God and live apart from Him. Use these Scriptures to help you make wise choices!
15 But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.”
20 Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.
1 Corinthians 10:13
13 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.
34 Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.
9 In their hearts humans plan their course, but the LORD establishes their steps.
17 Anyone who chooses to do the will of God will find out whether my teaching comes from God or whether I speak on my own.
2 Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves.
2 Chronicles 9:7
7 How happy your people must be! How happy your officials, who continually stand before you and hear your wisdom!
23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
13 You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh ; rather, serve one another humbly in love.
2 Peter 3:9
9 The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.
6 Seek the LORD while he may be found; call on him while he is near.
7 Let the wicked forsake their ways and the unrighteous their thoughts. Let them turn to the LORD, and he will have mercy on them, and to our God, for he will freely pardon.
16 And the LORD God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden;
17 but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.”
19 This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live
20 and that you may love the LORD your God, listen to his voice, and hold fast to him. For the LORD is your life, and he will give you many years in the land he swore to give to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
12 Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God—
13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.
16 So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.
17 For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want.
9 If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.
30 “Therefore, you Israelites, I will judge each of you according to your own ways, declares the Sovereign LORD. Repent! Turn away from all your offenses; then sin will not be your downfall.
31 Rid yourselves of all the offenses you have committed, and get a new heart and a new spirit. Why will you die, people of Israel?
32 For I take no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Sovereign LORD. Repent and live!
God Gives Us Free Will Bible Verse KJV
Proverbs 16:9 ESV / 2,497 helpful votes
The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps.
John 1:12-13 ESV / 1,344 helpful votes
But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.
Deuteronomy 30:19-20 ESV / 1,333 helpful votes
I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse. Therefore choose life, that you and your offspring may live, loving the Lord your God, obeying his voice and holding fast to him, for he is your life and length of days, that you may dwell in the land that the Lord swore to your fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give them.”
John 7:17 ESV / 1,331 helpful votes
If anyone’s will is to do God’s will, he will know whether the teaching is from God or whether I am speaking on my own authority.
1 Corinthians 10:13 ESV / 1,283 helpful votes
No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.
Joshua 24:15 ESV / 1,283 helpful votes
And if it is evil in your eyes to serve the Lord, choose this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your fathers served in the region beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”
Revelation 3:20 ESV / 1,271 helpful votes
Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.
Romans 10:9-10 ESV / 1,137 helpful votes
Because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.
Genesis 2:16-17 ESV / 1,126 helpful votes
And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, “You may surely eat of every tree of the garden, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.”
Galatians 5:16-17 ESV / 1,026 helpful votes
But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do.
John 6:44 ESV / 961 helpful votes
No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day.
Mark 8:34 ESV / 949 helpful votes
And calling the crowd to him with his disciples, he said to them, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.
1 Timothy 2:4 ESV / 897 helpful votes
Who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.
2 Peter 3:9 ESV / 873 helpful votes
The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.
Psalm 37:23 ESV / 868 helpful votes
The steps of a man are established by the Lord, when he delights in his way;
Proverbs 16:1 ESV / 849 helpful votes
The plans of the heart belong to man, but the answer of the tongue is from the Lord.
James 1:13-16 ESV / 825 helpful votes
Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death. Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers.
Deuteronomy 30:19 ESV / 824 helpful votes
I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse. Therefore choose life, that you and your offspring may live,
Ephesians 1:11 ESV / 822 helpful votes
In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will,
2 Timothy 2:26 ESV / 810 helpful votes
And they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will.
Galatians 5:13 ESV / 806 helpful votes
For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.
1 Corinthians 2:14 ESV / 787 helpful votes
The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned.
Romans 6:23 ESV / 787 helpful votes
For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 13:2 ESV / 750 helpful votes
Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment.
Ezekiel 18:30-32 ESV / 750 helpful votes
“Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways, declares the Lord God. Repent and turn from all your transgressions, lest iniquity be your ruin. Cast away from you all the transgressions that you have committed, and make yourselves a new heart and a new spirit! Why will you die, O house of Israel? For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Lord God; so turn, and live.”
Romans 8:29-30 ESV / 739 helpful votes
For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.
John 3:16 ESV / 720 helpful votes
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
Ephesians 1:4 ESV / 668 helpful votes
Even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love
Revelation 22:17 ESV / 604 helpful votes
The Spirit and the Bride say, “Come.” And let the one who hears say, “Come.” And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who desires take the water of life without price.
Acts 4:27-28 ESV / 601 helpful votes
For truly in this city there were gathered together against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, along with the Gentiles and the peoples of Israel, to do whatever your hand and your plan had predestined to take place.
Ephesians 1:5 ESV / 599 helpful votes
He predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will,
Isaiah 55:6-7 ESV / 569 helpful votes
“Seek the Lord while he may be found; call upon him while he is near; let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; let him return to the Lord, that he may have compassion on him, and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.
Titus 1:2 ESV / 544 helpful votes
In hope of eternal life, which God, who never lies, promised before the ages began
Genesis 6:5 ESV / 542 helpful votes
The Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
John 3:16-17 ESV / 536 helpful votes
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.
John 15:16 ESV / 531 helpful votes
You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you.
Acts 13:48 ESV / 529 helpful votes
And when the Gentiles heard this, they began rejoicing and glorifying the word of the Lord, and as many as were appointed to eternal life believed.
Romans 9:16 ESV / 509 helpful votes
So then it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God, who has mercy.
Psalm 139:16 ESV / 489 helpful votes
Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.
John 1:12 ESV / 482 helpful votes
But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God,
John 8:24 ESV / 455 helpful votes
I told you that you would die in your sins, for unless you believe that I am he you will die in your sins.”
Galatians 5:1 ESV / 454 helpful votes
For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.
Romans 8:7-8 ESV / 442 helpful votes
For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
Revelation 1:1 ESV / 432 helpful votes
The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show to his servants the things that must soon take place. He made it known by sending his angel to his servant John,
Proverbs 16:4 ESV / 422 helpful votes
The Lord has made everything for its purpose, even the wicked for the day of trouble.
John 8:32 ESV / 421 helpful votes
And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
Hebrews 11:6 ESV / 416 helpful votes
And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.
Matthew 11:28 ESV / 410 helpful votes
Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
Ephesians 2:10 ESV / 398 helpful votes
For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
2 Timothy 1:9 ESV / 385 helpful votes
Who saved us and called us to a holy calling, not because of our works but because of his own purpose and grace, which he gave us in Christ Jesus before the ages began,
1 Peter 2:9 ESV / 383 helpful votes
But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.
Luke 1:37 ESV / 383 helpful votes
For nothing will be impossible with God.”
Romans 3:23 ESV / 366 helpful votes
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
Romans 9:17 ESV / 351 helpful votes
For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, “For this very purpose I have raised you up, that I might show my power in you, and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth.”
2 Thessalonians 2:13 ESV / 349 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
But we ought always to give thanks to God for you, brothers beloved by the Lord, because God chose you as the firstfruits to be saved, through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth.
God Gives Us Free Will Scripture
Colossians 3:12 ESV / 344 helpful votes
Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience,
John 12:32 ESV / 342 helpful votes
And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.”
Titus 1:1 ESV / 337 helpful votes
Paul, a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, for the sake of the faith of God’s elect and their knowledge of the truth, which accords with godliness,
Luke 18:7 ESV / 335 helpful votes
And will not God give justice to his elect, who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long over them?
Mark 13:20 ESV / 334 helpful votes
And if the Lord had not cut short the days, no human being would be saved. But for the sake of the elect, whom he chose, he shortened the days.
John 8:34 ESV / 333 helpful votes
Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who practices sin is a slave to sin.
Revelation 11:1-19 ESV / 332 helpful votes
Then I was given a measuring rod like a staff, and I was told, “Rise and measure the temple of God and the altar and those who worship there, but do not measure the court outside the temple; leave that out, for it is given over to the nations, and they will trample the holy city for forty-two months. And I will grant authority to my two witnesses, and they will prophesy for 1,260 days, clothed in sackcloth.” These are the two olive trees and the two lampstands that stand before the Lord of the earth. And if anyone would harm them, fire pours from their mouth and consumes their foes. If anyone would harm them, this is how he is doomed to be killed. …
Proverbs 1:29 ESV / 331 helpful votes
Because they hated knowledge and did not choose the fear of the Lord,
Isaiah 65:12 ESV / 330 helpful votes
I will destine you to the sword, and all of you shall bow down to the slaughter, because, when I called, you did not answer; when I spoke, you did not listen, but you did what was evil in my eyes and chose what I did not delight in.”
Ephesians 1:4-5 ESV / 328 helpful votes
Even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will,
Romans 9:11 ESV / 319 helpful votes
Though they were not yet born and had done nothing either good or bad—in order that God’s purpose of election might continue, not because of works but because of him who calls—
John 8:36 ESV / 314 helpful votes
So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.
Ephesians 2:8-9 ESV / 310 helpful votes
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.
John 10:18 ESV / 308 helpful votes
No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This charge I have received from my Father.”
2 Timothy 2:25-26 ESV / 304 helpful votes
Correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will.
1 Peter 1:2 ESV / 302 helpful votes
According to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in the sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and for sprinkling with his blood: May grace and peace be multiplied to you.
1 John 2:2 ESV / 299 helpful votes
He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.
Romans 8:2 ESV / 295 helpful votes
For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.
Matthew 24:31 ESV / 293 helpful votes
And he will send out his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.
Romans 6:17 ESV / 291 helpful votes
But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed,
Galatians 6:7 ESV / 272 helpful votes
Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap.
1 Corinthians 6:12 ESV / 267 helpful votes
“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.
John 3:6 ESV / 267 helpful votes
That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
Exodus 4:21 ESV / 265 helpful votes
And the Lord said to Moses, “When you go back to Egypt, see that you do before Pharaoh all the miracles that I have put in your power. But I will harden his heart, so that he will not let the people go.
2 Corinthians 9:7 ESV / 255 helpful votes
Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.
Proverbs 3:31 ESV / 255 helpful votes
Do not envy a man of violence and do not choose any of his ways,
2 Corinthians 3:17 ESV / 254 helpful votes
Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.
1 Corinthians 2:7 ESV / 241 helpful votes
But we impart a secret and hidden wisdom of God, which God decreed before the ages for our glory.
James 4:7 ESV / 233 helpful votes
Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
Matthew 15:19 ESV / 228 helpful votes
For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander.
1 John 3:2 ESV / 225 helpful votes
Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.
Romans 5:8 ESV / 221 helpful votes
But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Romans 8:29 ESV / 215 helpful votes
For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.
Romans 9:1-33 ESV / 214 helpful votes
I am speaking the truth in Christ—I am not lying; my conscience bears me witness in the Holy Spirit— that I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. For I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, my kinsmen according to the flesh. They are Israelites, and to them belong the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises. To them belong the patriarchs, and from their race, according to the flesh, is the Christ, who is God over all, blessed forever. Amen. …
Deuteronomy 11:26-28 ESV / 213 helpful votes
“See, I am setting before you today a blessing and a curse: the blessing, if you obey the commandments of the Lord your God, which I command you today, and the curse, if you do not obey the commandments of the Lord your God, but turn aside from the way that I am commanding you today, to go after other gods that you have not known.
2 Corinthians 7:1 ESV / 201 helpful votes
Since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body and spirit, bringing holiness to completion in the fear of God.
Acts 2:23 ESV / 198 helpful votes
This Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men.
Hebrews 10:10 ESV / 194 helpful votes
And by that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
Matthew 23:37 ESV / 194 helpful votes
“O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing!
Jeremiah 17:9 ESV / 193 helpful votes
The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?
John 5:40 ESV / 190 helpful votes
Yet you refuse to come to me that you may have life.
Isaiah 45:7 ESV / 185 helpful votes
I form light and create darkness; I make well-being and create calamity; I am the Lord, who does all these things.
Jude 1:4 ESV / 182 helpful votes
For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.
1 John 3:23 ESV / 182 helpful votes
And this is his commandment, that we believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as he has commanded us.
Romans 3:11 ESV / 182 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
No one understands; no one seeks for God.