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New Testament | Quotes


Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father in heaven. And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church.

Jesus/Jesus Christ, Gospel of Matthew

This pronouncement is made in Matthew 16:17–18 (compare with Mark 3:16, Luke 6:14, John 1:42). With the statement Jesus praises Simon, now to be called Peter (Greek for "rock"), for recognizing Jesus's identity: he is the Messiah. This moment also marks a formal beginning for church leadership, which Jesus leaves in the hands of his apostles.


So when Pilate saw that he could do nothing ... he took some water and washed his hands before the crowd, saying 'I am innocent of this man's blood; see to it yourselves.' Then the people as a whole answered, 'His blood be on us and on our children!'

Gospel writer(s), Gospel of Matthew

The Gospel of Matthew is attributed to Matthew the evangelist. This quote comes from Matthew 27:24–25. An interaction between the Roman governor Pilate and the Jewish people places the blame for Jesus's crucifixion firmly on the Jews, even implying that all future generations of Jews are equally to blame. This verse has served as an unfortunate basis for some anti-Semitic tendencies in later Christian history. In its original historical and rhetorical context, the presentation of Jewish guilt is one way Matthew the evangelist creates a link between Jesus and Hebrew Bible prophets who were rejected by God's people in their own time.

It may also have been a way to insist that Christ-believers were somewhat separate from both Roman society and traditional Judaism.


The beginning of the good news of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

Gospel writer(s), Gospel of Mark

The Gospel of Mark is attributed to Mark the evangelist. This first verse of the earliest gospel (Mark 1:1; compare with Matthew 1:1) identifies the story that follows as "good news" (Greek euangelion) and makes a theological claim that Jesus is the Christ or Messiah, the anointed one of God promised in prophecy.


For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but have eternal life.

Jesus/Jesus Christ, Gospel of John

This statement from John 3:16 about the importance of Jesus, God's son, is foundational for Christian belief in the early church and throughout history. The single verse is thought to summarize key connections among divine love, God's generosity, Christ's sacrifice, and eternal life for those who believe.


But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.

Jesus/Jesus Christ, Acts of the Apostles

This quotation comes from Acts 1:8. Just before he ascends into heaven, the resurrected Jesus tells his apostles they will continue to carry out an evangelizing mission with the help of the Holy Spirit. This statement previews the action of the Acts of the Apostles, which describes the expansion of the Christian message far beyond Jerusalem.


Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? Therefore we have been buried with him by baptism into death, so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.

Paul (formerly Saul), Romans

Paul writes this in Romans 6:3–4. He assures his readers the ritual of baptism is more than a cleansing of sins. On his interpretation, baptism becomes a means of participating in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Resurrection here means a new life in the present and a promise of eternal life after death.


There is no longer Jew or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no longer male and female; for all of you are one in Christ Jesus.

Paul (formerly Saul), Galatians

In Galatians 3:28, Paul emphasizes the ability of a belief in Christ to create unity. He is writing during a time when Jews and gentiles (non-Jews) tended to have separate religious and cultural practices, but he insists that belief in Christ can bring them together into a single community, also dissolving divisions based on social status and sex.


[Christ Jesus] emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, being born in human likeness. And being found in human form, he humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death—even death on a cross.

Paul (formerly Saul), Philippians

This excerpt (verses 7–8) from the famous hymn in Philippians 2 is one summary of the life of Christ, commenting on the self-sacrificial life and death of Jesus. Jesus's decision to suffer crucifixion is described as obedience to God, and in the context of the letter, Paul uses the hymn to recommend that all Christ-believers imitate Jesus's humble obedience. The hymn may be an original Pauline composition, but it is also possible it is a pre-Pauline piece of writing that he adopts from Christian liturgy (public worship).


For in him [Jesus] all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him God was pleased to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, by making peace through the blood of his cross.

Paul (formerly Saul), Colossians

This quotation from Colossians 1:19–20 is attributed to Paul although its authorship is disputed. The letter writer is listing unique attributes of Christ, and this excerpt highlights Jesus's important role as God's representative on earth. Jesus's life and his self-sacrificing death by crucifixion were a way for God to reestablish unity with creation. This quotation emphasizes Jesus's role as savior.


I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. From now on there is reserved for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will give me on that day, and not only to me but also to all who have longed for his appearing.

Paul (formerly Saul), 2 Timothy

This statement from 2 Timothy 4:7–8 is attributed to Paul although its authorship is disputed. Paul describes his life of faith and faithfulness with athletic metaphors, implying the life of a Christ-believer requires effort and endurance. He also expresses a belief that Jesus will be the ultimate judge of all people and will reward his faithful believers with a crown. The crown probably symbolizes eternal life.


For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who in every respect has been tested as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore approach the throne of grace with boldness, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

Narrator, Hebrews

In Hebrews 4:15–16, the author compares Christ to the high priests of the people of Israel, who performed sacrifices that purified the people and brought them into right relationship with God. Jesus, the new high priest, understands the human struggle because he lived as a human. Christ-believers can be confident that this Jesus, now in heaven, will assist them.


What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if you say you have faith but do not have works? ... So faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead.

James, the brother of Jesus, James

The writer of James is traditionally identified with James, the brother of Jesus, though the author might have been anonymous. In James 2:14, 17 argues that faith or belief that does not inspire the holder to take action, specifically in the form of good works that serve people in need, is not a living faith.


Beloved, let us love one another, because love is from God; everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love.

Gospel writer(s), 1 John

Because of similarities between the Johannine letters (1, 2, and 3 John) and the Gospel of John, many scholars have tended to identify the letter writer with the evangelist, who is traditionally thought to be John, the Beloved Disciple of Jesus (named in passages such as John 19:26 and 21:24). Current scholarly consensus no longer supports the identification of the Beloved Disciple with either the evangelist or the letter writer, but most New Testament scholars do believe the letter writer knew the Gospel of John and may have been a member of a so-called Johannine community.

The proclamation from 1 John 4:7–8 identifying God as love and the source of love sets up a requirement for those who are Christ-believers: they must also participate in the love that comes from God.


Day and night without ceasing they sing, 'Holy, holy, holy, the Lord God the Almighty, who was and is and is to come.'

Narrator, Revelation

This scene from John's vision of the heavenly throne room in Revelation 4:8 depicts divine beings praising and worshipping God and Christ forever. The text becomes an important part of Christian liturgy (public worship), enduring until today.


See, I am coming soon; my reward is with me, to repay according to everyone's work. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.

Narrator, Revelation

This prophetic saying from Revelation 22:12–13 (compare with Revelation 1:8) refers to the figure of the risen Christ, who will return at the eschaton (the end of time) to judge all people, punishing evildoers and ensuring an eternal reward for those believers who have remained faithful.

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