Editor's note:

This selective, topical index is designed to help readers get a picture of the with-God life presented in the Bible and the role of the Spiritual Disciplines in fostering that kind of life toward its fullness. The passages listed either contain a specific reference to a topic serving as a discipline (e.g., the word “meditation”) or are about that topic without using the specific term. Because this index is selective, it does not list every passage in the Bible on each topic, and the entries are restricted to the topic’s role as a Spiritual Discipline. Some of the entries are negative examples of the practice of a particular discipline.

The list of disciplines chosen for this index also does not include every practice or situation that could actually serve as a discipline in the process of spiritual formation. The disciplines under consideration here include celebration, chastity, confession, fasting, fellowship, guidance (below), meditation, prayer, sacrifice, secrecy, service, silence, simplicity/frugality, solitude, study, submission, worship, and the with-God life.

Each section contains scriptural references for the various disciplines, in alphabetical order. Those references for which there are spiritual formation exercises are designated by an asterisk.

No doubt some passages may have been omitted that might be very useful for understanding spiritual formation. What is given here is intended to provide only a substantial introduction to the presence and importance of Spiritual Disciplines in the Bible. For further study on disciplines and how they are to be practiced, please see Richard Foster, Celebration of Discipline, and Dallas Willard, The Spirit of the Disciplines.

—Renovaré Team

Excerpt from Life with God Spiritual Formation Bible
GUIDANCE: Experiencing an interactive friendship with God that gives direction and purpose to daily life. 

*Exodus 15:13 

In your steadfast love you led the people whom you redeemed; you guided them by your strength to your holy abode.

*Numbers 12:8 

With him I speak face to face—clearly, not in riddles; and he beholds the form of the Lord.

*Numbers 22:18-35 

If the men have come to summon you, get up and go with them; but do only what I tell you to do.

*2 Samuel 5:19 

David inquired of the Lord, “Shall I go up against the Philistines?”

*2 Kings 22:14 

So the priest Hilkiah, Ahikam, Achbor, Shaphan, and Asaiah went to the prophetess Huldah.

*1 Chronicles 10:13-14 

He had consulted a medium, seeking guidance, and did not seek guidance from the Lord.

*Job 32:8-9 

Truly it is the spirit in a mortal, the breath of the Almighty, that makes for understanding.

*Psalm 31:3 

You are indeed my rock and my fortress; for your name’s sake lead me and guide me. 

*Psalm 67:4 

Let the nations be glad and sing for joy, for you judge the peoples with equity and guide the nations upon earth.

Psalm 73:24 

You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will receive me with honor.

*Isaiah 30:20-21 

When you turn to the right or when you turn to the left, your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying “This is the way; walk in it.”

Isaiah 42:16 

I will lead the blind by a road they do not know, by paths they have not known I will guide them.

Isaiah 58:11 

The Lord will guide you continually, and satisfy your needs in parched places, and make your bones strong.

*Jeremiah 1:6-8 

You shall speak whatever I command you.

*Obadiah 1 

We have heard a report from the Lord, and a messenger has been sent among the nations.

Matthew 23:16 

Woe to you, blind guides.

Luke 2:27 

Guided by the Spirit, Simeon came into the temple.

*John 14:1-31 

And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, so that where I am, there you may be also.

John 16:13 

When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth.

*Galatians 5:25 

If we live by the Spirit, let us also be guided by the Spirit.

James 1:5 

If any of you is lacking in wisdom, ask God, who gives to all generously and ungrudgingly, and it will be given you.

James 3:15-18 

The wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without a trace of partiality or hypocrisy.

Revelation 7:17 

The Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd, and he will guide them to springs of the water of life.

Excerpted from the Life with God Bible (New Revised Standard Version), with special thanks to HarperOne and to the late Dallas Willard who compiled the Index.