The most popular portion of the Bible is a verse urging readers not to be anxious, according to data released from online book seller Amazon. The online retailer recently released a list of the most popular passages from its most popular books. Amazon’s most popular books include The Hunger Games, The Harry Potter Series, Pride and Prejudice, and the Bible. It found that the commonly highlighted portion of the Bible is Philippians 4:6-7.
In the verses, the apostle Paul admonished the church, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Christian psychologist and Southern Baptist Theological Seminary professor Eric L. Johnson says God is inviting his creation to find freedom from anxiety though faith in Him.
“The believer is in an eternal relationship with God because of Christ’s death and resurrection and because we’re in union with Christ and all of our problems are fundamentally resolved in Christ, we don’t have to be anxious for anything anymore.”
Yet Johnson explains that freedom from worry is not immediate but rather a process.
“I see the verse as an encouragement that God wants them to be free of anxiety and has provided a way of finding freedom from anxiety but that’s going to take some practice: learning how to spend some time with God, learning how to surrender our worries and our fears to Him, learning how to let go of some of our pressures, maybe redeveloping certain lifestyle patterns, learning how to meditate and pray… learning how to do meditative prayer with Christ is very key here so that we can also do another nice verse that Peter says in 1 Peter 5:7 ‘cast your anxiety on the Lord,” he detailed to CP.
Anxiety disorders such as social anxiety disorder, panic disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder, and phobias affect 40 million U.S. adults ages 18 and older, making anxiety the most common mental illness in the United States, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America.
South Carolina Pastor Perry Noble noted in a column entitled “5 Myths About Anxiety and Depression” that “I often tell people that the theme song of hell is ‘Do More, Try Harder!’ For far too long Christians have said they believe in grace, but when it comes to worry, anxiety and even depression we rely on works.”