The bible verses you commonly hear at weddings are incredible scripture with great meaning, but they've rung through your ears many times growing up or at other weddings. Instead, you want your wedding day to echo a verse that holds deeper meaning. Rather than being focused on an overused statement that’s plastered on chalkboard signs all over Pinterest (example, I have found the one whom my soul loves...beautiful, but way too cliché), you are searching for something so wonderfully articulated that will resonate with you and your guests. And above all, a verse that will center your wedding around Jesus.
As you can read in our Mission Statement, we value God, family, then business. As much as we love weddings, we truly believe that a beautiful marriage goes beyond a wedding day; it’s a lifetime commitment. Marriage is beautifully difficult––full of forgiveness, grace, and a whole lot of patience. So we really took time to dig into the bible to uncover non-cliché, life-giving scripture that will be perfectly uncommon for your ceremony.
Then, once you pick a bible verse, you can discuss with your pastor or officiant in greater detail.
“Place me like a seal over your heart, like a seal on your arm.
For love is as strong as death, its jealousy as enduring as the grave.
Love flashes like fire, the brightest kind of flame.
Many waters cannot quench love, nor can rivers drown it.
If a man tried to buy love with all his wealth, his offer would be utterly scorned.”
This is a poem comparing love and death. Love is as strong as death; love is as intense as fire––bright, intense, fierce. It’s something that is given, not bought. Nothing can water down the intense flames of love when you’re bound together with Christ in your marriage.
Bring two imperfect people together, and then begin to attempt to create an everlasting love that will withstand the troubles, the wind, the rain, the fire of this world. Difficult, right? Marriage is no cake walk. Relationships aren’t any easier. Having Christ at the center of your relationship or marriage is the key in remaining in tact, and flamingly in love with each other even through the valleys.
As we know, nobody is perfect and at times we all fall short of succeeding. This poem is a beautiful example of a love that endures all things, even in the moments where life gets really real. If you and your partner have stood the tests of time, the trials, and some storms, if times haven’t always been easy - that’s incredibly lovely. Marriage and relationships can be messy, upside down, and life-y sometimes. You two are taking a wonderful step into a moment where you get to glorify God almighty. And a little secret that we’ll share with you.. usually the most beautiful love stories to read are the ones that are less than perfect, but come out to be a story of grace, patience, and overwhelming love.
“With all humility and gentleness, with patience,
bearing with one another in love,
eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace."
Paul, who wrote this to the church of Ephesus, started it by saying, “As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received,” and continued, “There is one body and one Spirit-just as you were called to one hope when you were called.”
It takes effort to live in harmony and peace (especially in marriage), but it is so well worth it. Unity was created by God and has the power to bind us together in peace. There is an unending unity in your commitment because you were called to be unified into one hope and one flesh. This is an incredible illustration of the weight of the commitment that you two are deciding to make. Your lives will no longer be two, but one with the bond of the Holy Spirit, your commitment, and your love for one another. This could be the perfect verse to use during the lighting of the Unity Candle, or the braiding of the three-strand Unity Rope. Play a peaceful musical tune to add some elegance, and emotion.
“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.”
A good, strong marriage requires both partners to be humble in serving the other. Your freedom in this world should not be used to amplify your needs––that will only cause destruction. Instead, we are called to joyfully focus on someone else’s needs… like your husband.
Galatians 5:13 is a verse that fills us with the notion that marriage is all about being a team player. Marriage is not simply about how our spouses can fulfill our needs, but instead what we can do for them, and how we can fulfill their needs. Marriage is incredibly sacrificial, and there’s no better way to show your loved one that you care about them than to lay down your needs, and to focus on them, their needs, and the needs of your marriage. Perhaps if the two of you were involved with high school or college sports, or just enjoy sports in general, this could be the perfect reading at your wedding? Have the person that you appoint to reading the verse talk about the love that you have for sports, and how that is just one aspect that has brought you two together. Furthermore, have them go into detail on how that will play into your marriage as being team players for one another.
“May the God of endurance and encouragement grant you to live in such harmony with one another,
in accord with Christ Jesus,
that together you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
We are called to be one with Christ and his followers. It’s important to unify among believers and in our spouse. As Juli Camarin writes, “We are to be likeminded with Christ and renew our minds to the endurance and encouragement the scripture offers us. We should make an effort to dwell in the spirit of unity between believers; there should be no divisions or arguments among us. We should live in mutual harmony out of love for each other in accordance with Christ Jesus.”
Romans 15:5-6 emphasizes the importance of living in perfect harmony with one another. This verse would be a wonderful addition to a ceremony of blended families. Maybe you or your husband are creating a family of not only yourselves, but of your children from past marriages. Or perhaps your extended family is quite blended as well. However your family is created, harmony is a timeless foundation to build your future upon. Romans 15:5-6 exemplifies this idea beautifully. What better day to practice harmony amongst the two of you, your families, and your guests than your wedding day?
“The voice of my beloved!
Look! He’s coming,
leaping over the mountains,
bounding over the hills.
My beloved is like a gazelle or a young stag.
Look, there he stands behind our wall,
looking through the windows,
gazing through the lattice.
My beloved spoke to me:
Get up, my darling, my beautiful one, and come on.
Look! Winter is past.
The rain is over and gone.
Blossoms have appeared in the land.
The season of songbirds has arrived,
and cooing of turtledoves is heard in our land.
The fig tree has produced its fruit,
the grapevines have blossomed and exude their fragrance.
Get up, my darling, my beautiful one, and come on.
My dove, in the hidden places of the rocks,
in the secret places of the cliffs,
show me your form, and let me hear your voice.
For your voice is pleasant,
and your shape is lovely.
Catch the foxes for us,
the little foxes that destroy the vineyards,
our vineyards that are in bloom.
My beloved belongs to me and I belong to him.
He is the one who shepherds his flock among the lilies.
Until the day breaks and the shadows flee,
turn around, my beloved,
and be like a gazelle or a young stag
on the rugged mountains.”
The church (as God refers to as his bride) is God’s dove. We like how Bible Hub paraphrases these passages: “The church is Christ's dove; she returns to him, as her Noah. Christ is the Rock, in whom alone she can think herself safe, and find herself easy, as a dove in the hole of a rock, when struck at by the birds of prey. Christ calls her to come boldly to the throne of grace, having a great High Priest there, to tell what her request is. Speak freely, fear not a slight or a repulse. The voice of prayer is sweet and acceptable to God; those who are sanctified have the best comeliness.” The bride adores her beloved.
Perhaps the two of you are adventurous in your travels, or maybe you both love to nerd out on literature and poetry… this poem in Song of Songs is the perfect little piece to be read on your special day. God’s love is adventurous, bold, and enduring. It goes through the hills and the valleys, through the storms and through the times of peace. The love you have with one another will undoubtedly mirror God’s love throughout the years together. Whether you’re on the mountain tops or in the valley lows of life, this verse shouts about the authenticity of love. Eloping in the Rocky Mountains, or saying your “I do’s” surrounded by family in a picturesque little spot where there is no church bells or chapel in sight? This poem will fit exquisitely no matter the weather, or backdrop of your ceremony.
“Therefore be imitators of God,
as beloved children.
And walk in love,
as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us,
a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”
In order to be good imitators of God, we must know him because you can’t imitate someone you don’t know. When we fully understand that God gave himself up for us, we will know how to walk in love like He did and still does. That means unselfishly and unconditionally––in your marriage. It resembles walking faithfully because he is a faithful God; it means truthfully because He is the truth. And most importantly, in love because God is love. Now that is a strong, important lesson to remember in marriage.
Your guests arrive, find their seats, and listen to a message that (hopefully) beautifully replicates your hearts for each other, and your hearts for God. When you vow your commitment to each other, this becomes a moment of imitating God. He vows His faithfulness to us, the two of you are vowing faithfulness to one another. Marriage is about imitating God’s perfect love, and if your ceremony can get that message across to your loved ones witnessing your commitment - job well done. This verse would be a lovely one to express either before or after you both state your vows. Brownie points if you decide to write your own! We love seeing the personalities of the bride and groom shine on the wedding day!
“I do not ask for these only,
but also for those who will believe in me through their word,
that they may all be one,
just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you,
that they also may be in us,
so that the world may believe that you have sent me.
The glory that you have given me I have given to them,
that they may be one even as we are one,
I in them and you in me,
that they may become perfectly one,
so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me.”
Jesus talks unity 3 times in this passage! We are created to be united with people and fellow believers. It means a shared life in Jesus Christ. If you decide to come into a union with your spouse, you are unified into one flesh. Christian unity is also important because it’s how we show the world God and his love.
If the two of you are planning on implementing a unity candle into your ceremony, reading John 17:20-23 during that time could not be more meaningful. A simply perfect use of a such a powerful message. The two of you are becoming one on this special day. Your families are becoming one on this day. Unity glorifies our Heavenly Father. And man, a wedding day must make the Man Upstairs smile real big.
“Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.”
This verse does not imply that you can’t or shouldn’t love through your lips, because that’s important too. But it means that when you love, you do something about it. Jesus lived his life in love––by teaching it and showing it through actions. He wants us to do the same in life and marriage. As we saw by Jesus’ actions, truly loving someone will produce loving actions.
The entire book of 1 John is a magical, and humbling story of Jesus and the love that He has for us. His whole life, He actively served people, and loved people. Becoming husband and wife is good stuff, but it’s also hard work. It requires us to actively be serving and loving the other person at all times. This would be a perfect verse to implement into the ceremony of a couple who is generous to others and helpful by nature. Some couples find themselves serving God by going on missions trips together, or volunteering locally at their churches or other foundations. 1 John 3:18 would tell a little snippet of your love story, and the love you have for one another and for others as well. Bonus! Have the person who you appointed to read this verse chat about the missions trip, or volunteer work that the two of you do together. Those sentimental touches make the ceremony that much more personal!
“If you listen obediently to the Voice of God, your God, and heartily obey all his commandments that I command you today, God, your God, will place you on high, high above all the nations of the world. All these blessings will come down on you and spread out beyond you because you have responded to the Voice of God, your God:
God’s blessing inside the city,
God’s blessing in the country;
God’s blessing on your children,
the crops of your land,
the young of your livestock,
the calves of your herds,
the lambs of your flocks.
God’s blessing on your basket and bread bowl;
God’s blessing in your coming in,
God’s blessing in your going out.
God will defeat your enemies who attack you.
They’ll come at you on one road and run away on seven roads.
God will order a blessing on your barns and workplaces; he’ll bless you in the land that God, your God, is giving you.
God will form you as a people holy to him, just as he promised you, if you keep the commandments of God, your God, and live the way he has shown you.
All the peoples on Earth will see you living under the Name of God and hold you in respectful awe. God will lavish you with good things: children from your womb, offspring from your animals, and crops from your land, the land that God promised your ancestors that he would give you. God will throw open the doors of his sky vaults and pour rain on your land on schedule and bless the work you take in hand. You will lend to many nations but you yourself won’t have to take out a loan. God will make you the head, not the tail; you’ll always be the top dog, never the bottom dog, as you obediently listen to and diligently keep the commands of God, your God, that I am commanding you today.”
God speaks so vividly in this passage about the blessings He has for us as long as we simply follow Him obediently. His love proves to be protective, unwavering, and overflowing. It doesn’t stop at just us, it leads beyond our lives into children’s, and beyond into their children’s. His blessings begin at obedience, and simply following His faithful and perfect plans for our lives.
This passage is a perfect showcase of the blessings that God has in store for us. Marrying each other is the first of many obedient steps that the two of you will take during your life together. Your marriage glorifies God and exemplifies His overwhelmingly perfect love for us. Your guests will be having all the feels, and will be able to see a glimpse into the relationship that the two of you have with Jesus. Even more, they will be able to hear of the blessings that God is preparing for the two of you. What a wonderful way to tell of the joy in being a follower of Christ!
“Put on then, as God's chosen ones,
holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience,
bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another,
forgiving each other;
as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.
And above all these put on love,
which binds everything together in perfect harmony.”
This passage from Colossians wraps up the qualities of God’s followers in a sweet and relevant way. It highlights compassion, patience, humility, grace, and meekness. It emphasizes love, and the importance of this asset in our relationships with people.
This is a great alternative to reading the beautiful, and well-known verse of, “Love is patient, love is kind”. Except this verse will switch up the norm, AND will remain classic and timeless. So often Christians hear the question, “What does it mean to be a Christian?”. It means quite a bit, but the floor plans that God lays before us here in Colossians 3:12-14 are incredibly easy to navigate and to explain to others. This verse would exemplify the principles upon which the two of you plan to lead your lives, and how you plan to carry out love and actions within your marriage.
What are your favorite bible verses for weddings? Or just life in general? Let us know in the comments!
P.S. If you're writing your own vows, you'll find this blog post beneficial, too. We have many tips for you!