17 Bible Verses about Confrontation

17 Bible Verses about Confrontation

How do you feel when you hear these words? “Can you come to my office?” Or "Can I have a word with you?" Does your guard go up? Does your brain goes into overdrive, wondering what issue might warrant a private conversation? You probably approach this meeting cautiously. You’d breathe a sigh of relief when it's good news—or you feel vindicated when your worries materialize. Whatever the outcome, this then becomes a determinant of how you choose to handle these types of events in the future—confrontations. In its simplest terms, confrontation is a meeting of persons face to face. In essence, a meeting is a confrontation, but so is a conversation. The tone of the discussion, the topic, and your relationship dictate how confrontation plays out.

Confrontation can be aggressive and competitive, or assertive and collaborative. We often assume the former and ignore the latter. When we confront, we're not necessarily on opposing sides; usually, there's a difference of understanding, a lack of knowledge, or shortsightedness. In this light, confrontation is viewed through a different lens.

When we think of confrontation, we often think of difficult conversations that devolve into arguments. However, we see that confrontation requires courage with a healthy dose of hope. Hope that both parties are better because of the confrontational encounter. Throughout the Scripture, we see various examples of confrontation.

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  • Examples of Confrontation in the Bible

    Examples of Confrontation in the Bible


    When God met with Adam and Eve after they sinned, that was God confronting man (Genesis 3:8-11).

    When Peter and Paul were in a heated debate over whether Jews should eat with Gentiles (Galatians 2), Paul used this confrontation to reassert a very important point—there is neither Jew nor Greek in Christ; we are all one. (Gal 3:28).

    One of the most astounding examples of confrontation was Saul's conversion on the road to Damascus—He met Jesus. He became a changed man: Paul, one of the more prolific and influential writers in the New Testament (Acts 9:1-25).

    When Joseph confronted his brothers after they sold him into slavery, Joseph said to them, "What deed is this that you have done?” (Genesis 44:14-15; Genesis 45:3)

    Moses confronted Pharaoh, “Let my people go” (Exodus 5:1-5).

    Elijah confronted King Ahab. “'I have not made trouble for Israel,’ Elijah replied. 'But you and your father's family have. You have abandoned the Lord's commands and have followed the Baals’” (1 Kings 18: 16-18).

    Then there’s the story of David and Nathan: Nathan was David's advisor who confronted him after he committed adultery with Bathsheba in 2 Samuel 12. After Nathan tells a story of a man who wrongly loses everything he loves, David was moved and asked, who is this man? Nathan replied, "Thou art the man!" Had Nathan not confronted David, David might have thought his scheme worked, but instead, confrontation brought conviction and correction.

    In these stories and many more, we see that there usually is a compelling need for confrontation, not just selfish desire. If we have relationships, confrontation is necessary.

    Confrontation provides a space for invitation, correction, wisdom, grace, and love, whether you confront or are the recipient of confrontation. Below are some Scriptures that show how we can handle confrontation.

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  • Bible Verses on How to Confront

    Bible Verses on How to Confront


    1. Proverbs 15:1 — “A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.”

    2. Romans 12:18 — “If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.”

    3. Hebrews 10:24-25 — “And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.”

    4. Ephesians 4:29 — “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.”

    5. Philippians 2:3-4 — “Do nothing from rivalry or conceit but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.”

    6. Ezekiel 3:18 — “If I say to the wicked, 'You shall surely die,' and you give him no warning, nor speak to warn the wicked from his wicked way, in order to save his life, that wicked person shall die for his iniquity, but his blood I will require at your hand.”

    7. James 5:19,20 — “My brothers, if anyone among you wanders from the truth and someone brings him back, let him know that whoever brings back a sinner from his wandering will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.”

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  • woman and man couple holding hands sitting talking looking serious, how to respond to spouse doubts

    Bible Verses on When to Confront


    8. Galatians 6:1“Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted."

    9. Luke 17:3 - “Take heed to yourselves: If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him.”

    10. Matthew 18:15 - "If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother.”

    Verses for You Are the Confrontee

    11. Proverbs 15:22 “Without counsel plans fail, but with many advisers they succeed.”

    12. Proverbs 27: 6-7 — “Faithful are the wounds of a friend; profuse are the kisses of an enemy. One who is full loathes honey, but to one who is hungry everything bitter is sweet.”

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  • Biblical Wisdom for Confrontation

    Biblical Wisdom for Confrontation


    13. James 4:6 — “But He gives more grace. Therefore, it says, ‘God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.’"

    14. 2 Timothy 2:23-24“Have nothing to do with foolish, ignorant controversies; you know that they breed quarrels. And the Lord's servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil.”

    15. Proverbs 29:11 - “A fool gives full vent to his spirit, but a wise man quietly holds it back.”

    16. Colossians 3:13 - “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.”

    17. Titus 3:10 - “As for a person who stirs up division, after warning him once and then twice, have nothing more to do with him…”

    We see that confrontation is not a bad thing and can be viewed through a wholesome, biblical lens with redemptive intentions and results. It often must happen out of care and concern because of relationships. If it is well received it can make a powerfully positive impact. If it is not, at least the issue was brought to light. May God strengthen us to confront or to receive confrontation based on the guidelines in His word.


    nylse-headshotNylse is a Christian wife and a mother of four who loves life and inspiring others. She likes to have fun but is very clear on who she is and Whose she is. A prolific thinker, she blogs to encourage others from a Christian perspective at www.lifenotesencouragement.com. She can be found online on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

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    nylse-headshotNylse is a Christian wife and a mother of four who loves life and inspiring others. She likes to have fun but is very clear on who she is and Whose she is. A prolific thinker, she blogs to encourage others from a Christian perspective at www.lifenotesencouragement.com. She can be found online on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.