The Bible Verse of the Year ... again

Millions flocked to the Bible in 2023

The most popular Bible verse on YouVersion apps in 2023 – for the third year in a row – is Isaiah 41:10: “Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.”

More people than ever before engaged with the Bible this year on YouVersion, which includes the Bible App, Bible App Lite and Bible App for Kids.

In fact, every month of 2023 ranked among the all-time highest months in YouVersion’s 15-year history for both installs and daily use. This year the app installs increased by more than 100 million devices, while the previous record from 2020 was 76 million installs in one year. Daily Bible use also grew by 20 per cent this year, with about 12 million people engaging with the Bible each day.

“It’s encouraging to see people continue to cling to God and his word in their greatest moments of need.” – Bobby Gruenewald, Founder and CEO of YouVersion

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The fact that Isaiah 41:10 was the most highlighted, bookmarked and shared verse this year demonstrates that people across the world were turning to the Bible for answers about love, peace, hope, healing and anxiety.

“From a global perspective, we’ve all been through a lot in the last few years, so it’s no surprise that people continue to feel drawn to the hope and peace promised in Isaiah 41:10,” said Bobby Gruenewald, Founder and CEO of YouVersion. “Even though there’s a lot of fear and anxiety felt around the world, we believe faith is the answer, and it’s encouraging to see people continue to cling to God and his word in their greatest moments of need.”

Eternity asked a few church leaders why they thought people were drawn to Isaiah 41:10 when it also ranked the most popular Bible verse in 2022. Matt Prater, senior minister of New Hope Church in Brisbane, said, “This verse hits home with many people because many are crippled with fear. I always say there are two ways to look at fear: Forget everything and run, or face everything and rise! We need to strengthen ourselves in the Lord every day, and walk by faith and not with fear. Most of our fears never come to pass anyway. On the battlefield of our mind, we shouldn’t give a foothold to fear!”

Teenager using YouVersion

This year also saw a dramatic increase in the global reach of YouVersion, with more than 80 per cent of app installs occurring outside the United States. India, Africa and Latin America experienced to highest rates of growth in app installs and daily Bible use.

More than 200 versions of the Bible in 100 new languages were added to YouVersion in 2023, taking the total number of Bible versions to over 3000, in 2000 languages.

“Our vision is to bring God’s word to everyone, everywhere, every day, and we know we can’t do it alone,” said Gruenewald. “More than ever before, we’re seeing the global church unify around God’s word, and it’s exciting to think about how many more people will grow closer to God because of the passion and commitment of our partners to work together.”

Bible Society Australia is among over 4660 global partners who work with YouVersion to provide Bible text and biblical content in as many languages as possible. For more Bible resources visit bible.com.au.