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Favorite Bible Character

2006 August 23
by Mike

Those old stories of scripture — of Abraham, of Sarah, of Isaac, of Rebekah, of Joseph, of Moses, of Joshua, of Deborah, of David, of Daniel, of Esther, of Mary, of Paul, of Peter . . . — have shaped our lives. They’ve given us wisdom, perspective, and courage. They’ve guided us by times of failure and times of great trust.

So who — besides Jesus — has most captured your imagination through the years? In other words, who’s your favorite Bible character? And (if you have time) why?

85 Responses leave one →
  1. August 23, 2006

    The story of Hosea and Gomer. Oh wait, did that cute guy up above mention it already? Hmmmm… wonder if he’s taken . . .

  2. August 23, 2006

    Jonathon – love the intensity of authentic friendship!

  3. August 23, 2006

    Probably David (a story of street level faith) and Barnabas (who encouraged people and made such an incredible difference).

  4. August 23, 2006

    To add to Zach’s comments made during the wee hours this morning, I love the contrast of Judas and Peter. Both called by Jesus. Both met with the power of the Enemy who knew their weaknesses. But it is so interesting how they handled their guilt. Judas, by self-destruction. Peter, by re-committing to the LORD and delivering that powerful and spirit-filled sermon on the Day of Pentecost. Such a reminder of God’s amazing grace!

  5. Sara permalink
    August 23, 2006

    In Uganda, I asked this question of my Ugandan women friends, and they said Bathsheba was their favorite character. At first, I thought they must be confused – how can an adultress be their favorite?(THE adultress “responsible” for the downfall of great King David) But, I think they identified with her because she was a woman who had so little control over her own life – defined and described by the men around her. I think they also felt close to her because she lost a baby- something they go through (statistically 1 in 5 babies born in Uganda will not live to see their 5th birthday). Bathsheba has been judged throughout history – mistrusted and painted as a seductress (just take a look at the art). Anyway, after that discussion with Ugandan women, I have thought a lot about Bathsheba and decided that she is one of my favorite characters too. If the story were written more from her perspective, I have wondered what she might teach us, and I wonder what her prayers were like. I love it how her name is mentioned in Matthew’s geneology, just another reminder that Jesus was a part of imperfect humanity and from God himself.

  6. August 23, 2006

    (Sara, you might appreciate Francine Rivers’ book about Bathsheba. I cannot remember the title but it is part of her Lineage of Grace series, which tells the stories of the female ancestresses of Jesus.)

    One of MY favorite characters is an apostle most people have never heard of.

    Simon the Zealot.

    For all intents and purposes, he was a terrorist. The Zealots advocated violent overthrow of the Roman government.

    I often wonder what drew him to Jesus and if he channelled his passion for the overthrow of the Romans into his work for the Gospel.

  7. LBC permalink
    August 23, 2006

    Ruth’s dedication to her mother-in-law and her obedience led her to be the great-grandmother of David. I’ve often wondered if he knew her.

    Rhoda–she got so excited she forgot to open the gate when Peter was knocking (Sometimes I forget to open the gate, too)

    I’m reading Tommy Tenney’s book about Esther. We could all take a lesson from her in our preparations for our meeting with THE King–she prepared for a whole year to meet the king of Persia. How much preparation do we make to meet the KING of KINGS? It’s a great book and very thought provoking.

  8. August 23, 2006

    Before I get to my selection (not yet named above), I have to echo those who named Enoch, because I was inspired by him and my great-great-grandfather, Harvey Stanley, who lived from 1819 to 1897, to start the Christian group blog last fall, Grace Notes, where we commend all who act as grace notes in our daily lives.

    My favorite Bible character has long been, due to my own circumstances in life for many (24) years, Abigail, in 1 Samuel 25, who was married to the “churlish” Nabal, and who helped David and his men when they were hiding out from Saul and when Nabal would have mistreated them.

    God showed favor on Abigail and turned Nabal’s heart “to stone,” after which he died. David took her as his wife because she was so good and kind to him and God greatly blessed her in her goodness.

    God greatly blessed me, as well, and brought into my life the man who has forever changed my life for the good in all ways.

    So, for Abigail’s example, I am forever grateful. God DOES look down on his servants with favor and I have been blessed as well as Abigail was and delivered into an infinitely better life.

  9. August 23, 2006

    Hannah holds a special place in my heart. I want her humility.

  10. Megan permalink
    August 23, 2006

    I’ve always loved reading about women in the Bible, especially Esther (I guess it runs in the family) and Ruth.

    What I really wanted to say, was thank you for everything you said at candlelight. It was amazing. You helped make a really special experience even better.

  11. August 24, 2006

    Oh yes . . . my answer?

    My whole life I’ve been captured by the one F. F. Bruce called “the apostle of the heart set free.”

    I’d love to have been there on the road when he met the one he was persecuting, or when he spoke to the Athenians, or when he built tents and shared Jesus in Ephesus, or when he met with the Ephesian elders at Miletus, or when he spoke to Felix, or when he shared Jesus in Rome.

  12. Marty permalink
    August 24, 2006

    I would also have to say Paul, but because he considered himself the worst of sinners (I Tim. 1:12-17). What makes Paul great is his gift of humbly accepting the grace of Jesus. And he is a self-proclaimed example of God’s mercy on those who believe. Paul is the one who taught me I can’t do great things, but God can do great things through me.

  13. August 24, 2006

    Peter

    Peter reminds me of myself. When not walking in the Spirit on purpose, I am impulsive, speak when I ought to listen, and I fear have even betrayed my Lord.

    Thankfully, when walking with God I am a different man. I am thrilled that God uses who he chooses, in spite of the self-reliant tendencies that want to rule.

  14. August 24, 2006

    I’m with Fajita here, my favorite has been Hannah for many years now…. that prayer – WOW!!! Talk about naked before God!

  15. August 24, 2006

    What? No nominations for Mahershalahashbaz? (Second son of Isaiah) And what about good old Huz and Buz?

  16. August 24, 2006

    I say Barnabas as well. He was one who saw in people what others did not. As Joel said above, he stuck with John Mark and when Paul arrived in Jeruselm, once the hunter, now the hunted and dispised, it was Barnabas who believed in him and brought him to the leaders.

    Many say where would we be without Paul, but the real question is what whould have Paul become if Barnabas had not believed in him?

  17. August 24, 2006

    The lady who says, “Okay. But don’t the dogs at least get a few crumbs?” That’s me.

  18. Craig permalink
    August 24, 2006

    “I wanna be like Daniel in the lions den,
    Waiting for God’s love to save him.”

    And Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.

  19. Jerry Sinclair permalink
    August 24, 2006

    My favorite Bible character is the one I can most identify with– the father of the demon-possessed boy in Mark 9. When the man asks Jesus to help “If you can,” Jesus tells him, “Everything is possible for him who believes.” The man then tells Jesus, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!” That statement is a very short summary of my faith, where occasionally I have doubts and seek proof, and sometimes that proof is not found. Read Lee Strobel’s chapter on Lynn Anderson in The Case for Faith for more on persons of faith having doubts.

  20. August 24, 2006

    “Favorite” may not be the best word, but the character I definitely relate the most to right now is Jonah. A man called by God to speak, yet he ran in the opposite direction. After time in the belly of the fish, he was given a second chance. I hope to experience that second chance as well. Hopefully, I won’t stew under a vine after the second chance.

  21. Donald Newton permalink
    August 24, 2006

    Gideon. God’s words to Gideon “Go in the strength you have” should be a battlecry for all disciples of Christ. As much as I love Mel Gibson’s speech in Braveheart, these words are so much more powerful.

  22. Karen permalink
    August 24, 2006

    the woman at the well in John 4

  23. August 25, 2006

    Felicia was very close with Jehoshaphat in 1 Chronicles 20, because his prayer demonstrates this was one king who had read the law. On the other hand, my favorite comes from the same chapter. When Jehoshaphat finshis his prayer, the people are silent, waiting. Deuteronomy 20 suggests that at such a time, the high priest was to assure the people that God would give them the victory. In 1 Chronicles 20, the priest does not. However, a Levite, a temple servant, named Jehaziel, steps forward and says exactly what the priest was supposed to say. For initiative, courage, and doing what had to be done at exactly the right time – even though it was not his job – Jehaziel, greatest unsung hero of the Bible. Caleb is a close second, standing up for God when 600,000 men wanted to stone him.

  24. August 28, 2006

    Thomas. I identify with his reluctance to believe. And the fact that Jesus met him where he was gives me hope. Thomas had to touch the Lord to believe that He was truly resurrected…none of the other apostles needed that…but Thomas did, and Jesus accommodated him. Awesome.

  25. mac sandlin permalink
    August 29, 2006

    Mary’s already been mentioned, but I have to say a few things about her. I think that the mother of Christ gets a bad wrap in most Protestant circles because all we ever hear about is how she wasn’t sinless, wasn’t a perpetual virgin, wasn’t assumed into heaven, etc. But by focusing on the false doctrines about Mary, we miss the beautiful story that the gospels paint about her. I can’t imagine being a 16 year-old girl (or however old she was) and hearing from God that I was about to be pregnant. Mary had everything to lose from this deal. She lived in a society that was not known for its kindness towards wayward women and their illegitimate children. She must have expected that her wedding with Joseph would be lost. After all, she was about to be carrying somebody else’s baby. Plus the normal fears that every woman has about pregnancy and raising children. I mean, how do you take on the responsibility of raising up the Son of God?? Yet in the face of all of this, Mary simply says, “I’m your servant Lord; do whatever you think is best.”
    What an amazing faith!!

  26. October 22, 2006

    this men and women in the Bible showed great faith in God and the grace of God was so evident in their lives.

  27. glen permalink
    October 22, 2006

    what do you have about Rhoda in the Book of Acts? The servant girl who heard Peter’s voice.

  28. December 11, 2006

    jonny464

  29. January 16, 2007

    Google is the best search engine

  30. Rachel permalink
    January 4, 2008

    My fave Bible character has to be Jacob, one of my heart-throbs. I imagine him to be cuter than any schoolboy, therefore it bugs me that so many picture Bibles portray him looking more like my brother’s old Latin master, with a thick beard! But I cherish my Precious Moments Bible, in which Jacob, and even Esau, look adorable. In my mind, Jacob has a childlike face, with big dark innocent eyes, and floppy boyish brown hair.

  31. mhemorie permalink
    March 29, 2008

    Alot of my faves have already been said.

    I love CALEB just like Rachel he is one of my heart-throbs.
    His commitment to Christ and going into battle.

  32. Jeff permalink
    March 30, 2008

    Two come to mind…

    1. Jacob (Isaac’s son), because he lost his heart, as I have done so often…

    2. The author of “Ecclesiastes”, whether his name be Solomon, Qoheleth, or Whoever… Now there’s a guy who thought it all out…

  33. shikha george permalink
    July 19, 2009

    well my favorite bible charecter is abaraham . i’m always suprised by his faith. he was ready 2 leave his things and go 2 the promised land.and was even ready 2 sacrifise his own son

  34. August 18, 2010

    To pick just one for me is impossible. Without doubt, I would have to give mention to Job. How can a person endure everything and I mean EVERYTHING satan could throw at him and it never broke him or shook him of his Faith.
    Mary Magdaline I also have a lot of respect for due to her courage to disiple and preach the word of God, in a time where women were relatively insignifigant.

  35. Ava permalink
    April 9, 2011

    I like Elizabeth, the mother of John the baptist.

    I also like Ruth.

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