Due to my growth & multiple changes in my worldview over the years, this post is considered “archived” and is offered here for historical purposes only. Opinions offered above may not necessarily reflect my current beliefs, though you're still more than welcome to participate in the comments, discussing anything from the post. Thank you for understanding.
One of my favorite parts about having installed various WordPress statistics plugins is being able to see how people end up on Timothy’s Burden. From the referral logs, I can not only keep up with other sites which may be linking to me but also with what people are searching for that leads them here. Some of the searches seem pretty common, and I’m impressed that Timothy’s Burden registers on the radar for them; other searches make me question just how in the world a search engine (most often Google or one of its international sites) would associate my site with that term, so I run the same search myself and sure enough there’s my site.
But I wonder if those people who are clicking over to Timothy’s Burden from their search results are actually finding what they wanted to find. So I came up with the idea of responding to my search referrals. Not only will it help future searchers find the right material if the same terms are used, but it will provide me with virtually unending topics to write about.
What does any of that have to do with the title of this post? “Bible verse that says God will never give us more than we can handle” is the first search result I’m going to reply to.
It should be noted that a page which provided that verse was given in the results (on the first page, even). However, that is one of my more controversial (and most often stumbled upon) messages, and the verse in question was only noted in passing.
So without further ado, what is the Bible verse that says God will never give us more than we can handle?
There isn’t one! What? Wait, what about… ? Nope, that’s different. To the best of my knowledge and searching, I cannot find a verse of the Bible which states that God will not give us more than we can handle. Sorry to disappoint.
So what verse was this searcher probably thinking of? Getting inside searchers’ minds can be an amusing pasttime. One of the earliest activities I was ever introduced to online was on the MetaCrawler MetaSpy. Back then, it was a text list that continually reloaded, if I recall correctly. Now it’s a fancy vertical Flash marquee. But the point of it is the same: Looking in at what the world is searching for can yield some fascinating insights into the mind of man.
Anyway, back on topic… What verse was probably being referenced? First Corinthians 10:13! It certainly doesn’t say that God will not give us more than we can handle, but it does give us the extraordinary promise that God will never allow us to be tempted more than we can handle and that He will always provide a way of escape. And in light of this truth that temptation is never too strong and that there is always a way out, Paul admonishes the Corinthians to flee from idolatry, one of the easiest sins to fall into. How reassuring the thought of a means of escape made by God Himself when charged to flee from such a sin as idolatry! It’s no wonder Paul placed the promise before the admonition.
So, to answer the revised search, “Bible verse that says God will never allow us to be tempted more than we can handle,” here is 1 Corinthians 10:13 as rendered in a variety of versions.
No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it. New King James Version
There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it. King James Version
No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, that you may be able to endure it. New American Standard Bible
No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it. New International Version
No temptation has taken you but such as is according to man’s nature; and God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above what ye are able to bear, but will with the temptation make the issue also, so that ye should be able to bear it. Darby’s Translation
No temptation hath taken you–except human; and God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above what ye are able, but He will make, with the temptation, also the outlet, for your being able to bear it. Young’s Literal Translation