The Jeff Cavins Show (Your Catholic Bible Study Podcast)
Ascension Catholic Faith Formation
In his weekly Catholic Bible study podcast, Jeff shares faith tips and scripture truths to help you live as a modern-day disciple of Jesus Christ.
Today is the March for Life and Jeff is focusing on the beauty and power humans have to bring forth life! Instead of resisting our God-given ability to have children, let’s celebrate this gift and take seriously our duty to plant a seed of faith in the next generation. Get Jeff’s Shownotes by texting “jeffcavins” to 33-777 or email us at:

Jeff is in the Holy Land! He shares his experience of seeing the Gospels come alive through this pilgrimage. From the Sea of Galilee to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Jeff describes what it’s like to walk in the footsteps of Jesus. Snippet from the Show Jesus said, “As the father has sent, even so I send you.” [John 20:21] God sent his son with the power of baptism and the Holy Spirit, and that is the way we are sent as well. Get Jeff’s shownotes by texting “jeffcavins” to 33-777 or email us at:

Why is humility such an important virtue? Jeff is bringing back an episode from the archives to answer this very question and to show how we can be better disciples of Jesus Christ when we humble ourselves. Get Jeff’s Shownotes by texting “jeffcavins” to 33-777 or email us at:

We're bringing back Jeff's episode on motivating scripture to help you stick to your New Year's resolutions. Whether you've heard them before or this is your first time hearing them, these twelve motivating Scripture verses will encourage and inspire you during times of fear, impossible situations, and unbelievable obstacles. In Times of Fear 1 Samuel 12:24 – “Only fear the LORD and serve him faithfully with all your heart. For consider what great things he has done for you.” 2 Timothy 1:7 – “For God did not give us a spirit of timidity but a spirit of power and love and self-control.” Joshua 1:7 – “Only be strong and very courageous, being careful to do according to all the law that Moses my servant commanded you. Do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may have good success wherever you go. This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” Deuteronomy 31:6 – “Be strong and of good courage, do not fear or be in dread of them: for it is the LORD your God who goes with you; he will not fail you or forsake you.” 1 Chronicles 22:13 – “Then you will prosper if you are careful to observe the statutes and the ordinances which the LORD commanded Moses for Israel. Be strong, and of good courage. Fear not; be not dismayed.” Psalms 27:1 – “The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” In Seemingly Impossible Situations Psalms 18:29 – “Yea, by thee I can crush a troop; and by my God I can leap over a wall.” Philippians 4:13 – “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Psalms 18:32-36 – “The God who girded me with strength, and made my way safe. He made my feet like hinds’ feet, and set me secure on the heights. He trains my hands for war, so that my arms can bend a bow of bronze. Thou hast given me the shield of thy salvation, and thy right hand supported me, and thy help made me great. Thou didst give a wide place for my steps under me, and my feet did not slip.” Ephesians 3:20-21 – “Now to him who by the power at work within us is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations, for ever and ever. Amen.” When there are Obstacles Ahead Matthew 17:20 – “For truly, I say to you, if you have faith as a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible to you.” Colossians 4:6 – “Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer every one.”

Following up on his show from last week about praying for daughters, Jeff shares the prayer he wrote for parents to pray for their sons. He breaks down the unique ways we can intercede for them so they may pursue virtue and walk in the ways of Our Lord. Snippet from the Show “Lord, I am blessed that you have given me a son. I see my son as a gift from you and pray that I will be a faithful provider, protector, and model of your faithfulness to him.” Get the shownotes! Text “jeffcavins” to 33-777 or email us at

This week, Jeff shares a beautiful prayer he wrote for his daughters and talks about the specific ways we can pray for them. He explains how daughters are unique gifts from God, and their parents and guardians are called to pray for them sincerely and consistently. Next week, Jeff will talk about how to pray for your sons. Snippet from the Show “Our daughters are God’s eternal daughters. And we only have them for a small period of time here on earth.” Get Jeff's prayer for daughters in the shownotes! Text “jeffcavins” to 33-777 or email us at

If you live until you’re 82 years old, you will have 30,000 chances to turn toward God. Every morning, we can choose to put aside the failings of yesterday, and strive to be the person that God intends us to be. This Advent, Jeff offers seven things you can do first thing in the morning that will set you up to serve the Lord for the rest of the day. Snippet from the Show If we’re going to obtain the prize [life in Christ] everyday, we can’t dwell on yesterday, we must look to what lies ahead today. Get Jeff’s Shownotes by texting “jeffcavins” to 33-777 or email us at

The holidays are a time to spend with the people we love, but at times, this merely highlights the isolation of those who are separated from their family and friends, or even those surrounded by people, but who still feel alone. So if you’re one of those people, this episode is for you. Jeff shows us how the Bible addresses loneliness and isolation, and reveals that we are not actually alone if we put our trust in the Lord. Snippet from the Show From the beginning of Scripture to the very end, God is mindful of the lonely. It’s in our loneliness that God invites us to be with him. Even his name ‘Emmanuel’ or ‘God with us’ is powerful. It’s an invitation to rest in him.

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, Jeff gives thanks to God for the seven people who changed his life for the better. Who has influenced your life? Jeff encourages you to make a list of those who have influenced your life, and thank God for them this year. Get Jeff’s Shownotes by texting “jeffcavins” to 33-777 or email Jeff at

We’ve all had family members and friends that we wish we could change, especially when we see them making decisions that clash with Catholic teaching, but you can’t force someone to follow rules (even if you know it would make them happier in the long run). Jeff offers some Scripture verses to help us better understand this concept and learn how to bring people to Christ first, so that they will choose to follow his commandments out of love, not just duty. Snippet from the Show “We can argue on topics all day long, but if we don’t know the basic proclamation of the gospel and bring Christ to people, we’re not going to see much change at all. The one who can change their heart is the one who doesn’t change.” 3 Ways to Get the Shownotes! Find this episode at Text “jeffcavins” to 33-777 Email us at

We are constantly inundated with conflicting opinions and points of view. How can Catholics sort through all these to walk by faith? Jeff draws on the Gospels, Psalms, and Hebrews chapter 11 to help us quiet the inner conflicts and focus on the one eternal truth of God. Snippet from the Show “There are two parts to faith: intellectual assent and a personal entrusting of oneself wholly to God.” Get the full shownotes by texting “jeffcavins” to 33-777 or email us at

Drawing from St. Paul, James, and Proverbs, Jeff brings up three decisions that will change your life for the better. First, value your time as a gift from God. Second, invest in people, not things. Third, seek wisdom, not trivia. These three changes will have a ripple effect on your life, and help you orient yourself towards God. Got a comment or question for Jeff? Email us at You can get today's shownotes delivered stright to your inbox! Just text JEFFCAVINS to 33-777

So many people walk through life constantly seeking validation. Are you one of them? Jeff reminds us that if we feel unaffirmed or unappreciated, we will seek validation somewhere—money, relationships, our work. But it’s only when Christ and our Heavenly Father validate us that we can be confident in our true worth. In today’s episode, Jeff addresses several unhealthy ways we might be seeking validation and shares wisdom to help us find our true identity and worth in Christ. SHOWNOTES *Quotes from the Show * Matthew 19:5 - “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one.” Prince: When Doves Cry - “How can you just leave me standing? Alone in a world that's so cold (so cold) Maybe I'm just too demanding. Maybe I'm just like my father, too bold. Maybe you're just like my mother. She's never satisfied (she's never satisfied). Why do we scream at each other? This is what it sounds like, when doves cry.” John 12:42-43 - “Nevertheless many even of the authorities believed in him, but for fear of the Pharisees they did not confess it, lest they should be put out of the synagogue: for they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God.” Matthew 20:1-16 - “For the kingdom of heaven is like a householder who went out early in the morning to hire laborers for his vineyard. After agreeing with the laborers for a denarius a day, he sent them into his vineyard. And going out about the third hour he saw others standing idle in the market place; and to them he said, ‘You go into the vineyard too, and whatever is right I will give you.’ So they went. Going out again about the sixth hour and the ninth hour, he did the same. And about the eleventh hour he went out and found others standing; and he said to them, ‘Why do you stand here idle all day?’ They said to him, ‘Because no one has hired us.’ He said to them, ‘You go into the vineyard too.’ And when evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his steward, ‘Call the laborers and pay them their wages, beginning with the last, up to the first.’ And when those hired about the eleventh hour came, each of them received a denarius. Now when the first came, they thought they would receive more; but each of them also received a denarius. And on receiving it they grumbled at the householder, saying, ‘These last worked only one hour, and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the day and the scorching heat.’ But he replied to one of them, ‘Friend, I am doing you no wrong; did you not agree with me for a denarius? Take what belongs to you, and go; I choose to give to this last as I give to you. Am I not allowed to do what I choose with what belongs to me? Or do you begrudge my generosity?’ So the last will be first, and the first last.” How Does God Validate Us? He Made Us In His “Image And Likeness” (Genesis 1:27) Zephaniah 3:17 - “The Lord your God is in your midst, a warrior who gives victory; he will rejoice over you with gladness, he will renew you in his love; he will exult over you with loud singing” *He Loves Us Even When We Sin * John 3:16 - “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” He Is Always On Your Side Romans 8:31 - “What then shall we say to this? If God is for us, who is against us?” He Has Placed Us In His Family The Church ** **God Commends Us, We Don’t Commend Ourselves 2 Corinthians 10:18 - “For it is not the man who commends himself that is accepted, but the man whom the Lord commends.” Ultimate Validation Comes From God, Not Others Proverbs 25:27 - “It is not good to eat much honey, so be sparing of complimentary words.” *He Is Eagerly Waiting To Reward Us * Matthew 6:16-18 - “And when you fast, do not look dismal, like the hypocrites, for they disfigure their faces that their fasting may be seen by men. Truly, I say to you, they have their reward. But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, that your fasting may not be seen by men but by your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you.” Resources Email Jeff: Visit the Museum of the Bible Get Jeff’s Shownotes by texting “jeffcavins” to 33-777 How to Pray Like Mary by Sonja Corbitt June Trip: “2020 Vision” Young Adult Pilgrimage

How often do you stop to recognize how God provides for you, and how often do you ask for his provision in your life? Often we are quick to attribute our successes and gains to our own abilities, forgetting that nothing good that we do or have comes without God’s generous provision. Whether it’s God’s grace to advance spiritually or his provision for our physical needs, God is always with us, like a faithful father standing by his children--even though they may not realize his presence. In this episode of the show, Jeff reflects on how each bike he owned throughout his youth came directly by way of his father’s generosity and provision. He uses his father’s constant presence and generosity as an image to remind us how God provides for us throughout our lives. Snippet from the Show They who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint. Isaiah 40:31 SHOWNOTES First Bike at Iowa State Joshua 1:9 - “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; be not frightened, neither be dismayed; for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Second Bike in Bloomington Isaiah 41:10 - “fear not, for I am with you, be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my victorious right hand.” *First Motorcycle * Matthew 28:19-20 - “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age.” Second Motorcycle Deuteronomy 31:6 - “Be strong and of good courage, do not fear or be in dread of them: for it is the Lord your God who goes with you; he will not fail you or forsake you.” Hebrews 13:5 - “Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have; for he has said, “I will never fail you nor forsake you.” Isaiah 40:31 - “but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.” Resources Email Jeff: Holy Land January 2020 Pilgrimage "2020 Vision" Holy Land June Pilgrimage

If we are focusing on the world, who is focusing on our family? We’re often distracted by the big picture of the world, but our attention is most needed at home. Jeff points to Scripture verses from Luke, 1 Timothy, and Matthew to show how we can emulate the good Samaritan and become a blessing to our families and local communities. Snippet from the Show “If you are focusing on the world, who is focusing on your neighbor?” Email us at to get the shownotes!

Growing in faith is difficult in our fast-paced, distraction-heavy lives. Jeff Cavins slows things down to help us focus on prayer and Jesus. Snippet from the Show “The pace of a disciple is not hurried. As we look at the saints, we see people who spent a lot of time with Jesus.” Ways We Can Slow Down Our Lives Prayer Read the Bible and learn about the Story of Salvation Read the Catechism of the Catholic Church Take some time to relax and sit in the presence of the Lord Resources Jeff’s Email: The Great Adventure Bible Timeline study

Developing a strong relationship with Jesus is so important to the spiritual life, and bringing children to Jesus is the main goal of Catholic parents. Jeff connects Scripture passages from Genesis, Deuteronomy, and Proverbs that deal with parenting and setting a good example for our kids, and give practical advice on how to bring children to Jesus. _Snippet from the Show “Parents have such a significant role in bringing their kids to Jesus. Nobody else can take up that role.” _ SHOWNOTES Matthew 19:13-15 - “Then children were brought to him that he might lay his hands on them and pray. The disciples rebuked the people; but Jesus said, ‘Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them; for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.’ And he laid his hands on them and went away.” Deuteronomy 32:1-3 - “Give ear, O heavens, and I will speak; and let the earth hear the words of my mouth. May my teaching drop as the rain, my speech distil as the dew, as the gentle rain upon the tender grass, and as the showers upon the herb. For I will proclaim the name of the Lord. Ascribe greatness to our God!” read more of Deuteronomy 32 Genesis 18:19 - “ ... for I have chosen him, that he may charge his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing righteousness and justice; so that the Lord may bring to Abraham what he has promised him.” Deuteronomy 6:1-9 - “Now this is the commandment, the statutes and the ordinances which the Lord your God commanded me to teach you, that you may do them in the land to which you are going over, to possess it; that you may fear the Lord your God, you and your son and your son’s son, by keeping all his statutes and his commandments, which I command you, all the days of your life; and that your days may be prolonged. Hear therefore, O Israel, and be careful to do them; that it may go well with you, and that you may multiply greatly, as the Lord, the God of your fathers, has promised you, in a land flowing with milk and honey. “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord; and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might. And these words which I command you this day shall be upon your heart; and you shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. And you shall bind them as a sign upon your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. And you shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.” Proverbs 25:11 - “A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver.” 10 Ways to Bring Your Children to Jesus Baptism Confimiration Study the Catechism Family Prayer Weekly Mass Confession Adoration Reading Scripture Praying the Rosary Shape your own life to be centered on Jesus Resources The Great Adventure Storybook "2020 Vision" Young Adult Pilgrimage to the Holy Land Holy Land January 2020 The Great Adventure Bible in a Day — Presented by Jeff Cavins

Jeff Cavins and Fr. Josh Johnson are in Poland! From Auschwitz to Pope St. John Paul II’s house, they discuss the places they have seen in connection with great Polish saints like St. Maximilian Kolbe and St. Faustina, as well as some amazing glory stories that reveal the mercy, truth, and suffering of these saints. Snippet from the Show “Blessed Jerzy, St. John Paul II, St. Maximilian Kolbe, St. Faustina, St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, they were all witnesses, not only of mercy and truth, but of suffering.” SHOWNOTES St. John Paul II Suffered and had the capacity to hate, but chose to love instead. He forgave the man who shot him. Influence of the domestic church: His father set an example of holiness by praying, self-sacrifice, and keeping close to the sacraments. Inscribed on the wall of his home: “Time flies, eternity waits.” St. Maximilian Kolbe Called out evil where he saw it, stood up on behalf of those being persecuted Last words of St. Kolbe to his brothers before being taken to Auschwitz: “Forget not love” Took the place of a man condemned to death. While he was being starved to death, he was praising God. John 15:13 - “No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” St. Faustina Example of how to the saints can intercede for us. St. Faustina appeared to a priest and asked him to pray with a man who was convinced he couldn’t be forgiven for causing the death of several people. The priest was able to forgive this man because it was the priest's family who had been killed. Blessed Jerzy Popiełuszko Always went out to be with the community Persecuted in communist Poland, and brutally martyred. RESOURCES Romans: The Gospel of Salvation

Jeff continues to unpack what happens to us when we are too preoccupied with worldly things and neglect to keep our eyes on heaven. He uses the metaphor of filling up on chips and salsa to illustrate this point, and draws on multiple biblical examples to go ever deeper. Snippet from the Show “I am defined by Jesus Christ, I am defined by my heavenly Father, and I am defined by truth. And Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.” SHOWNOTES Genesis 13:6 - (Lot & Abraham) “so that the land could not support both of them dwelling together; for their possessions were so great that they could not dwell together” Genesis 36:7 - (Jacob & Esau) “For their possessions were too great for them to dwell together; the land of their sojourning could not support them because of their cattle.” Psalms 49:10 - “both wise and stupid leave possessions to others.” Proverbs 28:7 - “He who keeps the law is a wise son, but a companion of gluttons shames his father.” Ecclesiastes 5:19 - “Everyone also to whom God has given wealth and possessions and power to enjoy them, and to accept his lot and rejoice in his toil—this is the gift of God. “ Numbers 11:18-20 - “And say to the people, ‘Consecrate yourselves for tomorrow, and you shall eat meat; for you have wept in the hearing of the LORD, saying, ‘Who will give us meat to eat? For it was well with us in Egypt.’ Therefore the LORD will give you meat, and you shall eat. You shall not eat one day, or two days, or five days, or ten days, or twenty days, but a whole month, until it comes out at your nostrils and becomes loathsome to you, because you have rejected the LORD who is among you, and have wept before him, saying, ‘Why did we come forth out of Egypt?’” Ecclesiastes 5:10 - “He who loves money will not be satisfied with money; nor he who loves wealth, with gain: this also is vanity.” The Cost of Overindulging Matthew 19:22 - “When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth.” James 4:2 - “You desire and do not have; so you kill. And you covet and cannot obtain; so you fight and wage war. You do not have, because you do not ask.” Matthew 6:24 - “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.” CCC 2113 - “Idolatry not only refers to false pagan worship. It remains a constant temptation to faith. Idolatry consists in divinizing what is not God. Man commits idolatry whenever he honors and reveres a creature in place of God, whether this be gods or demons (for example, satanism), power, pleasure, race, ancestors, the state, money, etc. Jesus says, ‘You cannot serve God and mammon.’ Many martyrs died for not adoring "the Beast" refusing even to simulate such worship. Idolatry rejects the unique Lordship of God; it is therefore incompatible with communion with God.” Matthew 24:47 - “Truly, I say to you, he will set him over all his possessions.” Matthew 6:33 - “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things shall be yours as well.” Colossians 3:1-2 - “If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.” Philippians 4:13 - “I can do all things in him who strengthens me.”

Have you ever gone to a restaurant and filled up on an appetizer (like chips and salsa) and then didn’t have any room left for the more nutritious main course? Jeff uses this illustration to explain how good things can become a problem when they replace God. Using Scripture passages from Genesis, St. Paul’s letter to the Colossians, and the Gospel of John, Jeff shows us why moderation is extremely important if we want to set our eyes on heaven. Snippet from the Show “Are we living in such a way where we can live in moderation and focus on the things that are really important or are we indulging in the temporal things?” SHOWNOTES Genesis 3:6 - “So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate; and she also gave some to her husband, and he ate.” 1 John 2:15-17 - “Do not love the world or the things in the world. If any one loves the world, love for the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the pride of life, is not of the Father but is of the world. And the world passes away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever. Colossians 3:2 - “Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.” John 6:25 - “When they found him on the other side of the sea, they said to him, ‘Rabbi, when did you come here?’” Jesus answered them, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, you seek me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate your fill of the loaves. ” John 6:27 - “Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of man will give to you; for on him has God the Father set his seal.” Samuel Johnson - "It is generally allowed, that no man ever found the happiness of possession proportionate to that expectation which incited his desire, and invigorated his pursuit; nor has any man found the evils of life so formidable in reality, as they were described to him by his own imagination; every species of distress brings with it some peculiar supports, some unforeseen means of resisting, or powers of enduring." C.S. Lewis (The Problem of Pain) - “All things that have ever deeply possessed your soul have been but hints of heaven—tantalizing glimpses, promises never quite fulfilled, echoes that died away just as they caught your ear … If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the more probable explanation is that I was made for another world … Earthly pleasures were never meant to satisfy it, but only to arouse it, to suggest the real thing.”