Tears are a common theme found throughout the Bible, often signifying deep emotion, sorrow, joy, or a sense of the divine. They carry significant spiritual weight in expressing human emotions and framing the narrative connected to different biblical personalities.
What Are the Roles of Tears in the Bible?
In the Bible, tears are portrayed as a natural response to various situations. Often, they symbolize sorrow and repentance but are simultaneously seen as tokens of joy or gratitude. For instance, tears poured out in moments of deep remorse or regret exhibit a profound level of spiritual awakening and contrition. On the other hand, tears associated with happiness or thankfulness embody a heart overflowing with love and gratitude. Regardless of their reason, tears serve as a silent language that communicates humanity’s most intense feelings in the presence of God.
Why Tears Matter in the Biblical Context
In the Bible, tears are not just expressions of overflowing emotions; they also serve a larger purpose. They are seen as a channel of communication with God, denoting the outpouring of the inward struggle of the heart. One significant aspect of tears in the Bible is God’s response to them. God is depicted as compassionate and understanding, acknowledging every tear shed. He responds to these tears with grace and mercy, providing comfort and hope in moments of despair, and contributing to spiritual growth and transformation.
Who Are the Biblical Figures Associated with Tears?
Numerous characters in the Bible express their emotions through tears, which significantly impact their stories. For instance, David, a key figure in the Old Testament, is often seen expressing his feelings and seeking solace from his trials through his tears. In the New Testament, we see Jesus weeping in deep empathy for those around him, revealing his heartfelt identification with human suffering and sorrow. Furthermore, tears of repentance play vital roles in the narratives of figures like Peter after denying Jesus and the wailing of Jerusalem’s residents when they understand their transgressions.
When Do Tears Appear in the Bible?
Tears appear throughout the Bible in a variety of contexts, adding depth and understanding to the narratives. In many instances, they are seen in periods of deep sorrow, such as when Abraham mourns for his wife, Sarah. In other instances, tears are a manifestation of joy or relief, like when Jacob weeps upon reuniting with his long-lost son, Joseph. They also appear in times of repentance and spiritual awakening, like when Peter weeps bitterly after denying Jesus. Jesus himself sheds tears in response to mortal death and the spiritual blindness of people, reminding us that tears are a crucial part of the human experience and our relationship with God.
Where Do We Find Understandings of Tears in the Bible?
The Bible offers multifaceted perspectives on tears, found in various passages that illuminate their meaning and significance. From these verses, we understand that God values every tear shed, offering solace and hope in distress. In some instances, the Bible even portrays God as keeping count of every tear, signifying his profound compassion and love for humanity. The cleansing power of tears is also prominent in the Bible – especially those shed in repentance. They serve as a vital part of spiritual growth, leading individuals towards redemption and transformation.
Below is our full list of bible verses on tears (King James Version – KJV) provided in ranked order.
Most Popular Bible Verses About Tears
“8 Thou tellest my wanderings: put thou my tears into thy bottle: are they not in thy book?”
“4 And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.”
“5 They that sow in tears shall reap in joy.”
“17 For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.”
“3 My tears have been my meat day and night, while they continually say unto me, Where is thy God?”
Related Themes: Depression
“8 He will swallow up death in victory; and the Lord GOD will wipe away tears from off all faces; and the rebuke of his people shall he take away from off all the earth: for the LORD hath spoken it.”
“5 Thou feedest them with the bread of tears; and givest them tears to drink in great measure.”
“12 Hear my prayer, O LORD, and give ear unto my cry; hold not thy peace at my tears: for I am a stranger with thee, and a sojourner, as all my fathers were.”
Related Themes: Humility
“20 My friends scorn me: but mine eye poureth out tears unto God.”
Related Themes: Friendship
“5 Go, and say to Hezekiah, Thus saith the LORD, the God of David thy father, I have heard thy prayer, I have seen thy tears: behold, I will add unto thy days fifteen years.”
“6 I am weary with my groaning; all the night make I my bed to swim; I water my couch with my tears.”
2 Kings 20:5
“5 Turn again, and tell Hezekiah the captain of my people, Thus saith the LORD, the God of David thy father, I have heard thy prayer, I have seen thy tears: behold, I will heal thee: on the third day thou shalt go up unto the house of the LORD.”
Related Themes: Healing
“5 For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.”
“10 Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.”
“19 Serving the Lord with all humility of mind, and with many tears, and temptations, which befell me by the lying in wait of the Jews:”
Related Themes: Humility
“15 The eyes of the LORD are upon the righteous, and his ears are open unto their cry.”
Related Themes: Righteousness
“11 Mine eyes do fail with tears, my bowels are troubled, my liver is poured upon the earth, for the destruction of the daughter of my people; because the children and the sucklings swoon in the streets of the city.”
Related Themes: Vindictiveness
“13 And this have ye done again, covering the altar of the LORD with tears, with weeping, and with crying out, insomuch that he regardeth not the offering any more, or receiveth it with good will at your hand.”
“24 And straightway the father of the child cried out, and said with tears, Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief.”
“33 When Jesus therefore saw her weeping, and the Jews also weeping which came with her, he groaned in the spirit, and was troubled,”
“17 But if ye will not hear it, my soul shall weep in secret places for your pride; and mine eye shall weep sore, and run down with tears, because the LORD’S flock is carried away captive.”
“8 For thou hast delivered my soul from death, mine eyes from tears, and my feet from falling.”
“1 Oh that my head were waters, and mine eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night for the slain of the daughter of my people!”
Related Themes: Gossip
“31 Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.”
“18 And let them make haste, and take up a wailing for us, that our eyes may run down with tears, and our eyelids gush out with waters.”
“17 Therefore thou shalt say this word unto them; Let mine eyes run down with tears night and day, and let them not cease: for the virgin daughter of my people is broken with a great breach, with a very grievous blow.”
“4 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;”
“12 Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.”
“7 Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared;”