Popular Sayings or Phrases In Our Culture/Language Today From The Bible

Whenever I am reading my Bible I take a note of popular sayings that we currently have in our language.  I have been doing this for several years now and I have listed these phrases I have come across while reading my Bible.  I am not claiming that all of these phrases originated from the Bible by any means.  Most of them probably have due to the early dates of their writing, but I do not know for sure.

Sour Grapes:

"What mean ye, that ye use this proverb concerning the land of Israel, saying, The fathers have eaten sour grapes, and the children's teeth are set on edge?"
Ezekiel 18:2 (Date of Writing: Six Century B.C.)

Eye For An Eye:

"But if any harm follows, then you shall give life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, stripe for stripe,"
Exodus 21:23-25 (Date of Writing: Fifteenth Century B.C.)

Woe Is Me:

"If I be wicked, woe unto me; and if I be righteous, yet will I not lift up my head. I am full of confusion; therefore see thou mine affliction,"
Job 10:15 (Date of Writing: Before the Tenth Century B.C.)

Straight and Narrow:

"Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it,"
Matthew 7:13-14 (Date of Writing: 50 A.D.)

Can A Leopard Change His Spots:

"Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots?  Then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil,"
Jeremiah 13:23 (Date of Writing: Seventh Century B.C.)

A House Divided Against Itself Shall Stand:

"And Jesus knew their thoughts, and said unto them, Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand,"
Matthew 12:25 (Date of Writing: 50 A.D.)

Skin of My Teeth:

"My bone cleaveth to my skin and to my flesh, and I am escaped with the skin of my teeth,"
Job 19:20 (Date of Writing: Before the Tenth Century B.C.)

Root Of The Matter:

"If you should say, ‘How shall we persecute him?’—Since the root of the matter is found in me,"
Job 19:28 (Date of Writing: Before the Tenth Century B.C.)

As Old As The Hills:

"Are you the first man who was born?  Or were you made before the hills?"
Job 15:7 (Date of Writing: Before the Tenth Century B.C.)

Eat Drink and Be Merry:

"Then I commended mirth, because a man hath no better thing under the sun, than to eat, and to drink, and to be merry: for that shall abide with him of his labour the days of his life, which God giveth him under the sun,"
Ecclesiastes 8:15 (Date of Writing: Tenth Century B.C.)

Fly In The Ointment:

"Dead flies putrefy the perfumer’s ointment, And cause it to give off a foul odor; So does a little folly to one respected for wisdom and honor,"
Ecclesiastes 10:1 (Date of Writing: Tenth Century B.C.)

The Ends Of The Earth:

"I will cut off the chariot from Ephraim And the horse from Jerusalem; The battle bow shall be cut off.  He shall speak peace to the nations; His dominion shall be ‘from sea to sea, And from the River to the ends of the earth,"
Zechariah 9:10 (Date of Writing: Sixth Century B.C.)

Writing On The Wall:

"Belshazzar the king made a great feast for a thousand of his lords, and drank wine in the presence of the thousand.  While he tasted the wine, Belshazzar gave the command to bring the gold and silver vessels which his father Nebuchadnezzar had taken from the temple which had been in Jerusalem, that the king and his lords, his wives, and his concubines might drink from them.  Then they brought the gold vessels that had been taken from the temple of the house of God which had been in Jerusalem; and the king and his lords, his wives, and his concubines drank from them. They drank wine, and praised the gods of gold and silver, bronze and iron, wood and stone.  In the same hour the fingers of a man’s hand appeared and wrote opposite the lampstand on the plaster of the wall of the king’s palace; and the king saw the part of the hand that wrote.  Then the king’s countenance changed, and his thoughts troubled him, so that the joints of his hips were loosened and his knees knocked against each other.  The king cried aloud to bring in the astrologers, the Chaldeans, and the soothsayers. The king spoke, saying to the wise men of Babylon, “Whoever reads this writing, and tells me its interpretation, shall be clothed with purple and have a chain of gold around his neck; and he shall be the third ruler in the kingdom.”  Now all the king’s wise men came, but they could not read the writing, or make known to the king its interpretation.  Then King Belshazzar was greatly troubled, his countenance was changed, and his lords were astonished,"
Daniel 5:1-9 (Date of Writing: Six Century B.C.)

Wits End:

"They reel to and fro, and stagger like a drunken man, And are at their wits’ end,"
Psalm 107:27 (Date of Writing: Tenth Century B.C. or later)


"Then she named the child Ichabod, saying, “The glory has departed from Israel!” because the ark of God had been captured and because of her father-in-law and her husband,"
1 Samuel 4:21 (Date of Writing: Tenth Century B.C.)

A Man After His Own Heart:

"But now thy kingdom shall not continue: the LORD hath sought him a man after his own heart, and the LORD hath commanded him to be captain over his people, because thou hast not kept that which the LORD commanded thee,"
1 Samuel 13:14 (Date of Writing: Tenth Century B.C.)

Blind Leading The Blind:

"Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind.  And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch,"
Matthew 15:14 (Date of Writing: 50 A.D.)

Salt Of The Earth:

"You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it be seasoned?  It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men,"
Matthew 5:13 (Date of Writing: 50 A.D.)

Wolf In Sheep's Clothing:

"Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves,"
Matthew 7:15 (Date of Writing: 50 A.D.)

Slippery Slope:

"Therefore their way shall be to them Like slippery ways; In the darkness they shall be driven on And fall in them; For I will bring disaster on them, The year of their punishment,” says the LORD,"
Jeremiah 23:12 (Date of Writing: Seventh Century B.C.)

Labor of Love:

"Remembering without ceasing your work of faith, and labour of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ, in the sight of God and our Father,"
1 Thessalonians 1:3 (Date of Writing: 51 A.D.)

Apple of My Eye:

"He found him in a desert land And in the wasteland, a howling wilderness; He encircled him, He instructed him, He kept him as the apple of His eye,"
Deuteronomy 32:10 (Date of Writing: Fifteenth Century B.C.)

Man Does Not Live By Bread Alone:

"So He humbled you, allowed you to hunger, and fed you with manna which you did not know nor did your fathers know, that He might make you know that man shall not live by bread alone; but man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the LORD,"
Deuteronomy 8:3 (Date of Writing: Fifteenth Century B.C.)

Safe and Sound:

"And he said to him, ‘Your brother has come, and because he has received him safe and sound, your father has killed the fatted calf,"
Luke 15:27 (Date of Writing: 60 A.D.)

Finger of God:

"Then the magicians said to Pharaoh, “This is the finger of God.” But Pharaoh’s heart grew hard, and he did not heed them, just as the LORD had said,"
Exodus 8:19 (Date of Writing: Fifteenth Century B.C.)

Thou Shall Not kill:

"Thou shalt not kill,"
Exodus 20:13 (Date of Writing: Fifteenth Century B.C.)

Fall From Grace:

"Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace,"
Galatians 5:4 (Date of Writing: 49 or 52 A.D.)

You Reap What You Sow:

"Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap,"
Galatians 6:7 (Date of Writing: 49 or 52 A.D.)

Forbidden Fruit:

"And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die,"
Genesis 2:16-17 (Date of Writing: Fifteenth Century B.C.)

Am I My Brother's Keeper:

"Then the LORD said to Cain, “Where is Abel your brother?”
He said, “I do not know. Am I my brother’s keeper?”
Genesis 4:9 (Date of Writing: Fifteenth Century B.C.)

Thorn In The Flesh:

"And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure,"
2 Corinthians 12:7 (Date of Writing: 57 A.D.)


"But the goat on which the lot fell to be the scapegoat shall be presented alive before the LORD, to make atonement upon it, and to let it go as the scapegoat into the wilderness,"
Leviticus 16:10 (Date of Writing: Fifteenth Century B.C.)

Blessed Are The Peacemakers:

"Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God,"
Matthew 5:9 (Date of Writing: 50 A.D.)

Don't Cast Your Pearls Before Swine:

"Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you in pieces,"
Matthew 7:6 (Date of Writing: 50 A.D.)

Signs of the Times:

"And in the morning, ‘It will be foul weather today, for the sky is red and threatening.’  Hypocrites!  You know how to discern the face of the sky, but you cannot discern the signs of the times,"
Matthew 16:3 (Date of Writing: 50 A.D.)

What God Has Joined Let No Man Put Asunder:

"Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder,"
Matthew 19:6 (Date of Writing: 50 A.D.)

Bloody Men:

"Surely thou wilt slay the wicked, O God: depart from me therefore, ye bloody men,"
Psalm 139:19 (Date of Writing: Tenth Century B.C. or later)

Eat My Dust:

"Those who dwell in the wilderness will bow before Him, And His enemies will lick the dust,"
Psalm 72:9 (Date of Writing: Tenth Century B.C. or later)

Good Samaritan:

"And Jesus answering said, A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead.  And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side.  And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side.  But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him, And went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him.  And on the morrow when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the host, and said unto him, Take care of him; and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee,"
Luke 10:30-35 (Date of Writing: 60 A.D.)

Forgive Them For They Know Not What They Do:

"Then Jesus said, 'Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do.'  And they divided His garments and cast lots,"
Luke 23:34 (Date of Writing: 60 A.D.)

Keep House:

"He maketh the barren woman to keep house, and to be a joyful mother of children.  Praise ye the LORD,"
Psalm 113:9 (Date of Writing: Tenth Century B.C. or later)

Beat Their Swords Into Plowshares:

"And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more,"
Isaiah 2:4 (Date of Writing: Eighth Century B.C.)

A Drop In The Bucket:

"Behold, the nations are as a drop in a bucket, And are counted as the small dust on the scales; Look, He lifts up the isles as a very little thing,"
Isaiah 40:15 (Date of Writing: Eighth Century B.C.)

Forever and Ever:

"So shall I keep thy law continually for ever and ever,"
Psalm 119:44 (Date of Writing: Tenth Century B.C. or later)

Fight the Good Fight:

"Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses,"
1 Timothy 6:12 (Date of Writing: 64 A.D.)

Powers that Be:

"Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.  Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation,"
Romans 13:1-2 (Date of Writing: 57-58 A.D.)

Pain of Death:

"Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it,"
Acts 2:24 (Date of Writing: 6o A.D.)


"Oh, that You would slay the wicked, O God!  Depart from me, therefore, you bloodthirsty men,"
Psalm 139:19 (Date of Writing: Tenth Century B.C. or later)

Sown the Wind:

"They sow the wind, And reap the whirlwind.  The stalk has no bud; It shall never produce meal.  If it should produce, Aliens would swallow it up,"
Hosea 8:7 (Date of Writing: Eighth Century B.C.)

Bald Eagle:

"Make thee bald, and poll thee for thy delicate children; enlarge thy baldness as the eagle; for they are gone into captivity from thee,"
Micah 1:16 (Date of Writing: Eighth Century B.C.)

Settled on Your Lees:

"Moab hath been at ease from his youth, and he hath settled on his lees, and hath not been emptied from vessel to vessel, neither hath he gone into captivity: therefore his taste remained in him, and his scent is not changed,"
Jeremiah 48:11 (Date of Writing: Seventh Century B.C.  See Also, Zephaniah 1:12)

Lambs To The Slaughter:

"I will bring them down like lambs to the slaughter, like rams with he goats,"
Jeremiah 51:40 (Date of Writing: Seventh Century B.C.)

After Seven Years Your Credit Score Will be Cleared:

"If thou buy an Hebrew servant, six years he shall serve: and in the seventh he shall go out free for nothing,"
Exodus 21:2 (Date of Writing: Fifteenth Century B.C.)

Let There Be Light:

"And God said, Let there be light: and there was light,"
Genesis 1:3 (Date of Writing: Fifteenth Century B.C.)

Be Not Weary in Well Doing:

"But ye, brethren, be not weary in well doing,"
2 Thessalonians 3:13 (Date of Writing: 51 A.D.)

The Love Of Money Is The Root Of All Evil:

"For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows,"
1 Timothy 6:10 (Date of Writing: 64 A.D.)

Though I Speak With The Tongues of Men and Angels:

"Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal,"
1 Corinthians 13:1 (Date of Writing: 56 A.D.)

He Who Is Without Sin, Cast The First Stone:

"So when they continued asking Him, He raised Himself up and said to them, “He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first,"
John 8:7 (Date of Writing: 85-90 A.D.)

Better To Give Than Receive:

"I have shown you in every way, by laboring like this, that you must support the weak. And remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive,"
Acts 20:35 (Date of Writing: 60 A.D.)

Gave Up The Ghost:

"And immediately the angel of the Lord smote him, because he gave not God the glory: and he was eaten of worms, and gave up the ghost,"
Acts 12:23 (Date of Writing: 60 A.D.)

Know No Shame:

"The LORD is righteous in her midst, He will do no unrighteousness.  Every morning He brings His justice to light; He never fails, But the unjust knows no shame,"
Zephaniah 3:5 (Date of Writing: Seventh Century A.D.)

Days Of Old:

"Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem Will be pleasant to the LORD, As in the days of old, As in former years,"
Malachi 3:4 (Date of Writing: Fifth Century B.C.)


"And Cush begat Nimrod: he began to be a mighty one in the earth.  He was a mighty hunter before the LORD: wherefore it is said, Even as Nimrod the mighty hunter before the LORD,"
Genesis 10:8-9 (Date of Writing: Fifteenth Century B.C.)

Weak Hand Shooting:

"Now these were the men who came to David at Ziklag while he was still a fugitive from Saul the son of Kish; and they were among the mighty men, helpers in the war, armed with bows, using both the right hand and the left in hurling stones and shooting arrows with the bow. They were of Benjamin, Saul’s brethren," 1 Chronicles 12:1-2 (Date of Writing: Fifth Century B.C.)

How Have The Might Fallen:

"The beauty of Israel is slain on your high places!  How the mighty have fallen!," 2 Samuel 1:19 (Date of Writing: Tenth Century B.C.)

Set The Battle in Array:

"Then Asa went out against him, and they set the battle in array in the valley of Zephathah at Mareshah," 2 Chronicles 14:10 (Date of Writing: Fifth Century B.C.)


"For the Levites left their suburbs and their possession, and came to Judah and Jerusalem: for Jeroboam and his sons had cast them off from executing the priest's office unto the LORD: And he ordained him priests for the high places, and for the devils, and for the calves which he had made," 2 Chronicles 11:14 (Date of Writing: Fifth Century B.C.) 

"I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."
Matthew 11:28-30
"For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.  Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you.  And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart."
Jeremiah 29:11-13
"That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved."
Romans 10:9