21 Bible Verses About Running Away From God (With Commentary)

21 Bible Verses About Running Away From God (With Commentary)

Have you ever found yourself running away from God? In this blog post, we will explore convicting Bible verses that address the tendency to flee from God’s presence and the consequences of such actions.

Discover the invitation to return to God’s loving embrace, experience His forgiveness, and find restoration for your weary soul.

Get ready to confront the reasons behind your urge to run and embark on a journey of reconciliation and renewal with the One who longs to draw you close.

Bible Verses About Running Away From God



Jonah 1:3

But Jonah set out to flee to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord. He went down to Joppa and found a ship going to Tarshish; so he paid his fare and went on board, to go with them to Tarshish, away from the presence of the Lord.

Jonah’s story begins with him running away from God because he did not want to proclaim God’s message to the people of Nineveh. Instead, he chose to flee to Tarshish, as far from God’s presence as he could. This verse highlights the fact that running away from God is a choice and therefore, has consequences.

1 Samuel 15:23

For rebellion is no less a sin than divination, and stubbornness is like iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, he has also rejected you from being king.

King Saul was instructed by God to destroy the Amalekites and all they had, but he disobeyed and saved the best of their flocks and herds. The Lord rejected Saul from being king because he rejected God’s word. This verse shows the danger of running away from God’s will and choosing our own selfish desires over obedience to God.

Genesis 16:6

Abram said to Sarai, “Your slave-girl is in your power; do to her as you please.” Then Sarai dealt harshly with her, and she ran away from her.

Hagar, a servant of Sarai, conceived a child with Abram, Sarai’s husband. Sarai then treated Hagar harshly, and Hagar chose to run away. This verse demonstrates how difficult, and sometimes unbearable, circumstances can cause us to flee from places and people, including God.

Numbers 14:3

Why is the Lord bringing us to this land to fall by the sword? Our wives and our little ones will become booty; would it not be better for us to go back to Egypt?

After leaving Egypt, the Israelites doubted God’s promise to give them the promised land and they wanted to go back to slavery in Egypt. This verse shows that running away from God can be fueled by fear, a lack of faith, and a desire for comfort even in difficult circumstances.

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2 Timothy 4:10

For Demas, in love with this present world, has deserted me and gone to Thessalonica; Crescens has gone to Galatia, Titus to Dalmatia.

Demas, a fellow worker of the Apostle Paul, left him because he loved the present world more. This verse illustrates how attachment to worldly things can lead to abandoning God’s work, or even deserting fellow believers, and ultimately running away from God Himself.

Jeremiah 18:11

Now therefore say to the people of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem: Thus says the Lord: Look, I am a potter shaping evil against you and devising a plan against you. Turn now, all of you from your evil way, and amend your ways and your doings.

God’s people frequently turned away from Him, choosing to follow their own ways and desires, and rejecting God’s commands and warnings. This verse shows how God repeatedly exhorts them to repent and turn away from their sins, urging them to come back to Him instead of running away.

Isaiah 59:2

But your iniquities have separated you from your God; your sins have hidden his face from you, so that he does not hear.

This verse emphasizes how sin can create a separation between us and God. When we choose to run away from God and indulge in our sinful desires, we distance ourselves from God’s presence and His blessings.

Jonah 1:10

The men were even more afraid, and said to him, ‘What is this that you have done!’ For the men knew that he was fleeing from the presence of the Lord, because he had told them so.

This verse shows how Jonah’s running away from God affected the people around him. His disobedience created fear and confusion among those around him, showing how our sins and choices can have a direct impact on others.

Psalm 139:7

Where can I go from your spirit? Or where can I flee from your presence?

This verse acknowledges the omnipresence of God. We can try to run away from God, but we will never escape His presence. It highlights how running away from God is a futile and foolish exercise, as we cannot avoid His divine plan in our lives.

1 Corinthians 10:13

No testing has overtaken you that is not common to everyone. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tested beyond your strength, but with the testing he will also provide the way out so that you may be able to endure it.

This verse reminds us that God is faithful and that He will not allow us to be tempted beyond what we can bear. It highlights the importance of turning to God instead of running away, trusting Him to help us through challenging situations.

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Jonah 2:1-2

Then Jonah prayed to the LORD his God from the belly of the fish, saying, ‘I called to the LORD out of my distress, and he answered me; out of the belly of Sheol I cried, and you heard my voice.’

This passage shows how Jonah eventually repented and turned back to God, even from the depths of the sea. It highlights that it is never too late to turn back to God, even after we have run away from Him for a long time.

Galatians 5:7

You were running well; who prevented you from obeying the truth?

This verse reminds us that we can start our journey with God well but that it is essential to remain focused on Him and obey His truth. It highlights how easy it is to get distracted and move away from His presence, leading to us running away from God and jeopardizing our relationship with Him.

2 Chronicles 7:14

if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, pray, seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.

This verse shows that God is willing to forgive us when we repent and turn away from our wicked ways. It highlights the importance of acknowledging our faults and returning to God, who is merciful and compassionate.

James 4:7

Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

This verse emphasizes our need to submit ourselves to God and resist Satan’s temptations. It highlights the importance of running towards God instead of away from Him, as we gain strength and find protection in His presence.

Hebrews 10:25

not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

This verse reminds us of our need to gather together with fellow believers as we run the race of faith. It highlights how running away from God can lead to isolation and hinder our spiritual growth, while meeting with others strengthens our faith and encourages us.

Jonah 1:17

But the LORD provided a large fish to swallow up Jonah; and Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights.

This verse shows how God can use extraordinary measures to bring us back to Himself, even when we run away from Him. It highlights His sovereignty over all things, including our choices to flee from His presence.

Deuteronomy 30:2

and when you return to the LORD your God and obey him with all your heart and soul according to all that I command you today, you and your children, with all your heart and with all your soul

This verse speaks of the promise of restoration from God. It shows that running away is not a permanent state, but that God offers the opportunity to come back to Him and obey His commands. It highlights God’s grace and patience with us, despite our disobedience.

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Proverbs 14:12

There is a way that seems right to a person, but its end is the way to death.

This verse highlights the consequence of following our own desires and assuming we know better than God. It shows that running away from God and following our own path can lead to destruction.

What does the Bible say about Running Away From God?

The Bible contains several stories and passages that address the theme of individuals attempting to run away from God or His calling. One prominent example is the story of Jonah. In the Book of Jonah, God commands Jonah to go to the city of Nineveh and proclaim His message of repentance to its people. However, Jonah disobeys and tries to flee from God’s presence by boarding a ship headed in the opposite direction.

This act of running away from God leads Jonah into a storm at sea, and the sailors eventually throw him overboard to calm the tempest. God sends a great fish to swallow Jonah, and he spends three days and nights in its belly before repenting and praying to God. In the end, the fish spits Jonah onto dry land, and he obeys God’s command to go to Nineveh and preach to its people.

The story of Jonah illustrates that attempting to run away from God’s will or calling is futile and ultimately leads to undesirable consequences. It emphasizes the importance of obedience and submission to God’s plan. Throughout the Bible, we see other instances where individuals who tried to escape God’s call or will faced various trials and difficulties until they surrendered and returned to Him.

The principle here is that God’s plans and purposes for individuals are sovereign and cannot be escaped or avoided successfully. Running away from God only prolongs the process of learning and growth He intends for His followers. The Bible encourages believers to trust in God, seek His guidance, and be willing to follow His leading, knowing that His ways are higher and better than our own.

In summary, the Bible teaches that running away from God’s will or calling is unwise and unproductive. Instead, it is best to trust in God, submit to His leading, and find fulfillment and purpose in following His path for our lives.

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