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Native American Proverbs That Sound A Lot Like Scripture

If you want to know a people, the saying goes, know their proverbs. Proverbs are the time-honored and tested truths that reflect the wisdom and experience of a culture. Nowhere is that more true than in the simple and profound eloquence of the Native American tribal cultures. The wisdom from these cultures often bears a striking resemblance to Holy Scripture, yet the oral tradition of these proverbs dates to well before the Bible was brought to the shores of America.

Reading these Native American proverbs makes it difficult to ignore that God makes His will and wisdom known to all cultures, even those who don’t have access to the Bible.

Native American Wisdom

A sin against a neighbor is an offense against the Great Spirit. (Sioux)

When you have learned about love, you have learned about God. (Fox)

The rain falls on the just and the unjust. (Hopi)

Love a people who do not live for the love of money. (Duwamish)

Always look at your moccasin tracks first before you speak of another’s faults. (Sauk)

Sharing and giving are the ways of God. (Sauk)

We are friends; we must assist each other to bear our burdens. (Osage)

There is no fear where there is faith. (Kiowa)

Inner peace and love are the greatest of God’s gifts. (Sioux)

Deeds speak louder than words. (Assiniboine)

In death I am born. (Hopi)

The rainbow is a sign from Him who is in all things. (Hopi)

We are made from Mother Earth and we go back to Mother Earth. (Shenandoah)

Those who do not fear God are not strong. (Seneca)

If a man is as wise as a serpent he can afford to be as harmless as a dove. (Cheyenne)

The greatest strength is gentleness. (Iroquois)

The supreme law of the land is the Great Spirit’s law, not man’s law. (Hopi)

Use all your powers to care for your people and especially for the poor. (Sioux)

Do not wrong or hate your neighbor, for it is not he that you wrong but yourself. (Pima)

He who serves his fellows is of all the greatest. (Dakota)

Love one another and do not strive for another’s undoing. (Seneca)

Judge not by the eye but by the heart. (Cheyenne)

A good man does not take what belongs to someone else. (Pueblo)

Sin is not allowed in God’s tepee. (Mohawk)

Speak the truth in humility to all people. (Sioux)

Be eager to share your gifts in the name of love. (Seneca)

Good and evil cannot dwell together in the same heart. (Delaware)

With all things and in all things we are relatives. (Sioux)


Posted on January 12, 2021
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Jim Baker

Jim is a Church Organizational Leadership and Management Coach, Consultant and Trainer. Throughout his career Jim has demonstrated a passion for showing Pastors and Ministers how to use organizational tools for church and personal growth and health.

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“For I may be absent in body, but I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see how well ordered you are and the strength of your faith in Christ.” Colossians 2:5