Young woman earnestly reading the Bible witht he word principles printed on it

Usually, when it’s getting toward the end of the year, we look back to the past year and make New Year’s resolutions because we want to improve in the next year. We want to boost our personal and spiritual growth in the new year. As Christians, we can align our personal goals with the principles of goal setting in the Bible.

While the start of a new year is a good time to work on your goal setting, it is not the only time of the year that it will be good to work on your goals. Throughout your life time, there are opportunities to set and get new goals—during each stage of your life. That’s why it is crucial to understand the principles of goal setting in the Bible.

In this blog, we will look at Christian goal setting and various Bible verses about biblical goal setting. We will uncover the powerful principles of goal setting in the Bible, and we will get a better understanding of biblical goal setting.

If you are ready to work on your personal goals, grab your Bible, a pen and a journal, and dive in!

What is goal setting according to the Bible?

Goal setting according to the Bible involves identifying and pursuing God’s purposes for our lives. It is about aligning our desires and aspirations with God’s will and making intentional efforts to achieve the plans He has for us.

The Bible provides powerful principles and guidance for setting goals that are rooted in faith, wisdom, and obedience to God. These principles count whether we are working on your New Year resolutions based on Bible verses for the coming year or specific goals for certain life events. Goal setting isn’t limited to just the turn of the calendarit’s a lifelong journey.

Goal setting according to the Bible involves seeking God’s guidance, aligning our goals with His purposes, persevering in the face of challenges, and surrendering our goals to His will. By incorporating these principles into our process of goal setting, we can live a life that is focused on fulfilling God’s purposes and bringing glory to His name.

5 Biblical goal-setting principles

When it comes to goal setting, the Bible is full of timeless wisdom like a treasure trove. Think of it as your GPS on the journey of aspirations. We can find valuable principles in God’s Word. These principles go beyond mere words on a page. They have the power to transform our lives and help us align our goals with God’s purposes.

Here are the 5 principles of goal-setting in the Bible that can guide us in our pursuit of personal and spiritual growth:

  1. Seek God’s will and guidance: As Christians, we are encouraged to seek God’s wisdom and direction when setting goals. This involves prayer, seeking counsel from trusted spiritual mentors, and studying the Word of God for guidance.
  2. Set goals that align with biblical principles: We should ensure our goals are in line with the teachings of the Bible. For example, setting goals that promote love, justice, righteousness, and the well-being of others.
  3. Prioritize spiritual growth: As God’s children, we are called to prioritize our spiritual growth and relationship with God above all else. This involves setting goals that focus on deepening our faith, studying the Bible, and engaging in spiritual practices such as prayer, worship, and service.
  4. Practice self-discipline and perseverance: Goal setting requires discipline and perseverance. We are encouraged to cultivate these qualities as we pursue our goals, relying on God’s strength and grace to overcome challenges and obstacles.
  5. Trust in God’s timing and providence: Above all, we may need to trust in God’s timing and providence. Sometimes, goals may not be achieved according to our desired timeline, but the plans of the Lord are always perfect. Trusting in His timing and providence brings peace and contentment.

In summary, these biblical goal setting principles involve seeking God’s guidance, aligning goals with biblical principles, prioritizing spiritual growth, practicing self-discipline and perseverance, and trusting in God’s timing and providence.

By setting goals in accordance with these principles, we can live a life that is pleasing to God and brings fulfillment and blessings. We will reap the benefits of goal-setting, and we can live a life that is focused on fulfilling God’s purposes and bringing glory to His name.

So, embark on this journey of goal setting with a heart open to God’s leading and a desire to grow closer to Him.

What are Christian goals?

Are we, as Christians, allowed to set goals? Is it something God honors? What is Christian goal setting? All are valid questions we may ask. God is not intimidated by our questioning.

Well, our ultimate goal is to be like Christ Jesus and reflect Him in everything we do. That is not different with goal-setting. Jesus Christ is a clear goal setter. He knew what His goals were—both here on Earth and in Heaven. We can be like Him, imitate Him, and set clear goals for our lives.

The difference between normal goals and Christian goals, is that God is part of our goal setting from beginning to end. The biblical principle of goal setting is that we honor God with each of our goals and the way we accomplish our goals.  

Christian goals are Christ-centered goals and come in various types and forms, but they all share a common focus on living a life that is pleasing to God and aligned with His purposes.

There are 12 types of Christian goals:

  1. Spiritual goals. Spiritual goals are Christian goals come in various types, including spiritual goals. Spiritual goals are focused on deepening our relationship with God, growing in faith, and living a life that aligns with biblical principles. These goals can involve daily prayer and Christian meditation, studying the Bible, attending worship services regularly, and participating in acts of service and charity.
  2. Moral and ethical goals. These goals focus on living a life of integrity, honesty, and righteousness. Christians strive to follow the teachings of Jesus and apply biblical principles to their everyday decisions and actions.
  3. Faith goals. Faith goals are set with the intention of deepening our relationship with God and growing in faith. These goals may include reading the Bible daily, attending church regularly, participating in prayer and worship, and seeking a deeper understanding of biblical teachings.
  4. Character goals. Character goals focus on developing virtues and qualities that align with the teachings of Christ. This can involve setting goals to cultivate patience, kindness, humility, forgiveness, and love towards others.
  5. Service goals. Service goals aim to follow Jesus’ example of selflessness and compassion. These goals may include volunteering at a local charity, helping those in need, and actively contributing to one’s community.
  6. Mission goals. Mission goals involve sharing the message of Christ and making disciples. This may include setting goals to evangelize, mentor others in their faith journey, or participate in mission trips.
  7. Relationship goals. Relationship goals center on building and strengthening relationships with God and others. This may involve setting goals to prioritize time for prayer and meditation, nurturing healthy friendships, and seeking reconciliation and forgiveness in broken relationships.
  8. Prayer goals. Prayer goals are set intending to deepen our communication with God through prayer. This could include setting goals to establish a consistent prayer routine, praying for specific needs and concerns, and seeking a deeper connection with God through prayer.
  9. Financial goals. Financial goals involve being good stewards of the resources God has given and using them wisely. This may include setting goals to save, give generously, and avoid excessive debt. It also involves seeking God’s guidance in making financial decisions and trusting Him to provide for our needs.
  10. Personal growth goals. These goals aim to develop and improve ourselves physically, mentally, emotionally, and intellectually. We are created in the image of God and have a responsibility to steward our bodies and minds well. Personal growth is part of this.
  11. Health goals. Health goals focus on taking care of the body, which is the temple of the Holy Spirit. This caninclude setting goals to exercise regularly, eat a balanced diet, get enough rest, and maintain a healthy lifestyle. It also involves seeking God’s wisdom and strength to overcome unhealthy habits and temptations.
  12. Career goals. Career goals involve seeking God’s guidance in choosing a vocation and using our skills and talents to glorify Him in our work. This may include setting goals to develop new skills, pursue education or training opportunities, and seek promotion or advancement. It also involves seeking God’s will in career decisions and allowing Him to direct our path.

Goal setting in the Bible involves aligning our goals with God’s will and purpose for our lives. It encompasses various aspects of our lives, including faith, character, service, mission, relationships, prayer, finances, health, and career.

By seeking God’s guidance and surrendering our ambitions to Him, we can live a life that brings glory to Him and reflects His love and grace. Christian goals honor and glorify God, while also bringing joy, fulfillment, and blessings to ourselves and others.

In summary, Christian goals are goals that follow the principles of biblical goal setting. Christian goals are God-honoring goals, made for the glory of God. They involve surrendering personal ambitions to God and allowing Him to guide and shape our goals and aspirations.

We can benefit from our goals, such as personal and spiritual growth, but the ultimate goal is to glorify God.

What verse in the Bible talks about goal setting?

God’s wisdom speaks through each book of the Bible. God’s Word is a rich source of wisdom. There is, however, one book that we can rightly call the book of wisdom: the Book of Proverbs. God’s advice and guiding principles can be found here.

When it comes to goal-setting in the Bible, Proverbs is the ideal book to go to. It provides practical wisdom and guidance for living a wise and fulfilling life. So, when we want to know the principles of goal setting in the Bible, let’s have a look at what Proverbs says.

One principle of goal setting in the Bible is seeking God’s guidance and wisdom. Proverbs 16:3 says,

“Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.”

This powerful setting goals Bible verse encourages us to surrender our goals and plans to God, trusting that He will guide and establish them according to His will. This principle emphasizes the importance of involving God in our goal-setting process, seeking His guidance, and allowing Him to direct our steps.

Next, there is Proverbs 3:5-6 (NKJV) which gives us another guiding principle:

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.”

This principle underlines we need to let God be part of our goal-setting and trust Him He will direct us both in our goal-setting and our goal-getting.

The Bible also shows principles in parables, such as Proverbs 6:6-11 NKJV, about comparing to animals:

“Go to the ant, you sluggard! Consider her ways and be wise, which, having no captain, overseer or ruler, provides her supplies in the summer, and gathers her food in the harvest. How long will you slumber, O sluggard? When will you rise from your sleep? A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to sleep—So shall your poverty come on you like a prowler, and your need like an armed man.”

It shows the principle of hard work. We don’t set goals just for the sake of that. No. We do it to achieve results. And we won’t achieve results by being lazy. If we set BIG goals, God sized goals, we will need to work for it. The good thing is God wants us to set big goals and trust Him to help us achieve them. But we will have to do the hard work.

This principle is also shown in Proverbs 21:5 NKJV:,

“The plans of the diligent lead surely to plenty, but those of everyone who is hasty, surely to poverty.”

Another biblical principle of goal setting is to get advice. Proverbs 15:22 NIV,

“Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed.”

As well as in Proverbs 20:5 NKJV,

“Counsel in the heart of man is like deep water, but a man of understanding will draw it out.”

Don’t start without checking out what you want to do. It is okay to ask others for help—just make sure you ask the right people for help: wise people. Or, for example, read a book about biblical goal setting to deepen your insights.

Furthermore, Proverbs 29:18 shows the important principle of having a vision,

“Where there is no vision, the people perish.”

This setting goals Bible verse highlights the importance of having clear goals and a vision for our lives. It reminds us that without goals, we can easily lose focus and direction. It encourages us to seek God’s wisdom and guidance in setting goals that align with His purpose.

These Bible verses from Proverbs remind us of the importance of seeking God’s guidance and aligning our goals with His will. They encourage us to prioritize spiritual growth, selflessness, and service to others in our goal-setting.

By seeking God’s wisdom and surrendering our ambitions to Him, we can live a life that brings glory to Him and reflects His love and grace.

What is Proverbs 19 21?

“There are many plans in a man’s heart, Nevertheless the Lord’s counsel—that will stand.”

Proverbs 19:21 NKJV

This scripture reminds us that while we may have our own plans and aspirations, ultimately, it is God’s purpose that will prevail. It encourages us to seek His will and align our goals with His purpose.

Proverbs 19:21 emphasizes the importance of surrendering our goals to God’s will. While we may have our own desires and aspirations, it is crucial to surrender them to God and trust in His perfect plan for our lives. This means being open to redirection and adjusting our goals according to His leading.

What is Ephesians 3 20?

“Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us.”

Ephesians 3:20 ESV

This means you can set BIG goals. Because you serve a BIG God! Our big goals are small in God’s eyes. Don’t hold back on your goals, because God can do far more than you think. He has the power to exceed our expectations and accomplish more in our lives than we can imagine. This verse encourages us to have faith in God’s ability to do great things in and through us.

With Christian goal-setting, Ephesians 3:20 reminds us to dream big and not limit ourselves. We serve a God who is capable of doing far more than we can ask or think. This passage encourages us to trust in God’s power and believe that He can accomplish amazing things in our lives.

In summary, the Bible provides us with valuable principles for goal-setting. We are encouraged to commit our plans to the Lord, trust in Him with all our hearts, work diligently, seek counsel, have a clear vision, and surrender our goals to God’s will.

Additionally, Ephesians 3:20 reminds us that God is capable of doing far more than we can imagine. By aligning our goals with God’s purpose and trusting in His power, we can pursue and achieve goals that bring glory to Him and reflect His love and grace in our lives.

What does Philippians 3 14 say?

“I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”

Philippians 3:14 ESV

Philippians 3 verse 14 shows what our ultimate goal is—serving Christ Jesus while here on Earth, to the best of our abilities, and receiving a reward in heaven. It is our calling.

This principle of goal setting in the Bible shows first what our goal is and next that it doesn’t come easy. It says “I press”. Meaning, we do hard work, persevere, push, don’t give up, etc. It also means we will face obstacles and challenges, but we shouldn’t allow those to dismay or distract us. The third principle in this verse is that we will receive a reward when we achieve our goal.

When we read the context of verse 14, we see that another part of this principle is to forget our past—all the things that went wrong and the things that went well. We need to look ahead only, if we want to reach our goals.

“Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”

Philippians 3:13-14 NKJV

What is Isaiah 41 verse 10?

“Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.”

Isaiah 41:10 NLT

The principle shown in this verse is to set your goals with God and trust Him to carry you through. If at times you fall short and get discouraged, just remember the passage in Isaiah 41 verse 10 and receive encouragement to go on.

Whatever (biblical) goal you set, don’t be afraid to work on it. Don’t hold back, because God is with you. He will guide you and He will help you when you need it most. And in the end, he will give you victory.

Make sure you do your goal-setting with God, and you will succeed. You will reach the end and achieve your goal.


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More scriptures with principles of goal setting in the Bible

We can find principles of goal setting in the Bible in both the Old Testament and the New Testament. God is the same God—he has the same principles yesterday, today, and forevermore. This also means that when we keep the principles and set god-centered goals, God will fulfil His promises.

We have seen several of the biblical principles of goal-setting already. Each of them good for your personal goal setting or for example to use as Christian new year’s quotes.

But there is more….

Another principle is setting goals that align with God’s purposes and values. In Matthew 6:33, Jesus instructs us to,

“seek first his kingdom and his righteousness.”

This means that our goals should prioritize God’s kingdom and righteousness above all else. We should aim to glorify God in all that we do and seek to fulfill His purposes in our lives.

And in line with this, there is the wisdom in James 4:15 (NLT),

“What you ought to say is, ‘If the Lord wants us to, we will live and do this or that’.”

This means we shouldn’t be occupied with our own goals and be proud of our work to achieve them. We need to acknowledge that only if it is the will of God, we will achieve our goals. That’s why setting godly goals is so important. Yes, we need to do good planning and hard work—but the most important thing is that it should be Christ-centered goals, honoring God, so that He can help us and make them come to pass.  

When we do that, Psalm 37:4 NKJV says God will indeed give us what we want to achieve with our specific goals,

“Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart.”

This powerful principle guides us to keep our eyes on God, trust Him, and he will bless us.

In Habakkuk 2:2-3 NKJV we can find the sound principle of writing your goals down.

“Then the Lord answered me and said: ‘Write the vision and make it plain on tablets, that he may run who reads it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time; but at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; because it will surely come, It will not tarry’.”

Clearly written goals will help us keep our objectives in mind. It helps us to stay focused and endure until we reach our goal. This scripture encourages us to do so and to not give up when it takes longer than we thought. We can trust God that when we set smart goals, with God’s help we will reach our ambition.

Additionally, the Bible teaches us the importance of perseverance and endurance in goal setting. Hebrews 12:1-2 encourages us to “run with perseverance the race marked out for us.”

“Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”

Hebrews 12:1-2 (NKJV)

Setting godly goals requires commitment and perseverance, knowing that God is with us every step of the way. Even when faced with challenges or setbacks, we can trust in God’s strength and continue pursuing our goals.

Our character and the way we want to achieve our goals are also important principles. Here are 3 Bible verses that enlighten the principle of having a godly character in our goal setting and goal getting processes:

“But the noble make noble plans, and by noble deeds they stand.”

Isaiah 32:8 NIV

“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”

Romans 12:2 NKJV

Philippians 2:3-4 (NKJV)

“Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of the others.”

All these verses on goal setting in the Bible carry the sound biblical principles on which we can build our goals.

Take-away principles of goal setting in the Bible

Whether you are a seasoned goal-setter or setting a Christian goal for the first time, the principles of goal setting in the Bible are valid for everyone. They guide our goal setting process and will help us achieve our dreams.

When we align our goals with God’s plans and His will for our lives, we can dream big and set God-sized goals. Because it is not by our strength that we achieve them, but by God’s grace.

The timeless principles teach us that goal setting isn’t a solitary journey, but a partnership with God’s. It’s a call to dream big, align our goals with His wisdom, and trust in His grace to lead us to the finish line.

So, whether you’re a novice or a veteran in the art of goal setting, remember that the Bible’s principles are your unwavering companions on this lifelong journey, guiding you toward dreams you never thought possible.

“May he give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed.”

Psalm 20:4 NIV