The title suggests we should memorize the entire Bible. Not a reasonable goal for most of us. But how much of the Bible do we have hidden in our hearts? Few practices in your life will yield as much fruit as memorizing portions of God’s Word. Here are a few ideas for helping you integrate this difficult but vital spiritual discipline:
1. Have a Scripture memory accountability partner. It’s helpful if you are both on the same Scripture memory plan, but even if you are not, it’s beneficial to have someone else spurring you on to success.
2. Find a plan. Don’t put more work on yourself by having to figure out which Scripture you are going to memorize and when your goal will be to get it memorized. Here are two of the most popular plans:
(a) Topical Memory System – The Navigators developed this system several years ago and it has benefitted numerous Christians, especially those new to Scripture memory. The iPhone app for this tool is $2.99
(b) Fighter Verses – This system grew out of the children’s ministry of Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis, Minnesota. It’s also the plan I recently started. The iPhone app for this tool is $1.99
3. Memorize in your primary translation. For example, since the ESV is the primary translation I use, I memorize from the ESV.
4. Write out the verse(s) you are trying to memorize…multiple times. I don’t know if they still do it in school, but back when I was growing up, one of the ways students were punished for bad behavior was to write multiple times on the chalkboard (remember those?) the behavior they would not continue. Example: write 50 times on the chalkboard, “I will not talk in class.” Well, the principle applies to memorizing God’s Word. Just keep writing it out until you have it memorized. It works.
5. Keep good records of what you have memorized and go back regularly and review. If you do not review regularly, you will forget what you have memorized. Back when I was in college I memorized the first chapter of James. I still can remember parts of the chapter, but can no longer recite it from memory verbatim.
What are some ideas you have when it comes to Scripture memory? What has worked for you? How has Scripture memory impacted your life?