Thursday, May 9, 2013

Memorizing Scripture (Part II)

"Rather train yourself for godliness."(1 Timothy 4:7)

In yesterday's post, I explored the idea of Scripture memorization being one of the most neglected spiritual disciplines by Christians today. I outlined a handful of reasons why this is the case. Today, I want to state why I believe we should commit ourselves to storing the Word of God in our hearts, as well as how we can begin this profitable habit. 

With all the Bibles available today, why should we memorize portions of Scripture? We already have a Bible everywhere we go considering they are downloaded on our phones, iPads, Desktops, and other devises. So are there any reasons why we should commit Holy Scripture to memory? I believe there are; here are two big ones:

1. Memorizing Scripture causes you to Meditate & Reflect on Scripture. It is impossible to memorize passages without reflecting on the texts. This is one of the most fruitful effects of Scripture memorization. Meditating on His testimonies puts them in your head and your heart. Maturity in Christ comes as we know the Word in our hearts. 

2. Memorizing Scripture Arms & Equips you in Moments of Need. There are times in life when you need an immediate word of wisdom or a comforting word of encouragement. Other times it may be a word of strength to overcome a moment of temptation, sadness, or fear. Having Scripture memorized prepares you for those moments. (see Jesus' encounter w/ Satan in Matthew 4)

Those are a couple reasons why we should memorize Scripture, so how do we begin? I want to offer a few suggestions in the form of both strategies and resources. Here's how to begin:

1. Make Scripture Memorization a Matter of Prayer. Before you jump into some self-willed, flesh-driven effort, go before the Lord and declare to Him your desire to feast more richly on His Word through memorization. Ask Him to give you direction in what to memorize and ask Him to give you power to prevail in both memorization and perseverance. 

2. Start with Manageable Goals. Do not begin with memorizing the book of Romans. Instead, begin with Romans 3:23 or Romans 8:1. The point is to begin with some individual verses before moving into paragraphs, chapters, and books. This does not mean you neglect memorizing bigger portions of Scripture, just not when starting off. 

3. Memorize Practically Helpful Passages. All of Scripture is God's Word, but some passages speak more to the practical needs in our lives. Memorize Scriptures across different categories: God's holiness, God's sovereignty, man's sinfulness, the glory of Christ, the sacrifice of Christ, the resurrection of Christ, the call to faith and repentance, assurances of help from God, prayer, calls to holiness, etc. Find passages that help you with struggles with sins such as lust, worry, anger, or greed. 

4. Get a Memory Partner. Find someone to take the challenge with you and spur one another along. Set deadlines, rehearse passages to each other, give impromptu quizzes, etc. We grow faster in community.

5. Tap into the Overwhelming Number of Available Resources. There are so many apps and different helps to the person who wants to get serious about this. Here are some to check out: A.) Fighter Verses, B.) Partnering to Remember, C.) 32 Ways to Remember Scripture.

Oh that we would be a people that gave our greatest efforts, our most intense training, toward godly things! May God use these posts on Memorizing Scripture call us all to be people who store the Word of God in our hearts so they are available for use in our lives, whenever we need them...which is every moment of every day. 

Give your feedback about the post in the comments section. What things have been helpful to you? 

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