Sometimes we have to “force” ourselves to read the Bible. But it’s so good for us. But memorizing the Bible? That’s on a whole other level.
First… the basics:
- Does God expect you to memorize the Bible? No.
- Does God love you more when you memorize the Bible? No.
- Is it a sin if you can’t quote a single scripture? No.
Memorizing the Bible benefits us
Memorizing the Bible (more specifically, specific Bible passages) can benefit us.
If you want to memorize the whole Bible, great! But that’s not the point here. The point is that we memorize specific Bible verses that help us, so that we can use them to strengthen our faith even without a physical Bible in hand.
Here is an example: You are on the bus on your way to work. You are scrolling through the news on your smartphone. Another terrorist attack. Fear knocks at your door. What do you do now? You pull the Bible out of your backpack, turn to Psalm 91, and read through this beautiful Psalm.
Well, if you can do it that way, great. But if you don’t have your Bible with you and you’ve memorized Psalm 91, you could pray these beautiful verses right away. And the fear disappears again.
Another example: Mr. Meyer is sitting in the doctor’s office waiting for the diagnosis. The doctor comes into the room with a sad look. It’s cancer. Mr. Meyer could pull out the Bible he took earlier and read Isaiah Chapter 53, verses 4 & 5. Or: If he has already memorized these verses, he could pray them immediately.
Memorizing Bible verses allows you to easily pull these promises from God for those times that you need them most. If you don’t know the verses, and can’t quite remember what was said about the situation you are in, the enemy can speak doubt into you. He will say things like “Did Jesus really say that?”, and you may not know how to answer him. If you have the verse memorized, you can know the promises of God that He has for you, His beloved child.
‘Okay, I want to memorize the Bible too. Where should I start?’
Ask the Holy Spirit what passages He recommends for you. He knows you and your situation perfectly.
Maybe you’re afraid right now that you don’t have enough money. The Holy Spirit has chosen a perfect spot for you.
Maybe you are lonely. No friends. Nobody calls. Even in these moments the Holy Spirit has chosen a verse just for you.
Asking the Holy Spirit is more helpful than what we can recommend here. Still, a few of my favorite verses are:
- Isaiah 40:11: “He tends his flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have young.” (NIV)
- Psalm 91:7: “A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you.” (NIV)
- Psalm 23:1: “The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing.” (NIV)
Meditate on God’s Word all day long
Memorizing Bible passages is not only helpful for examples like the ones above, but it is also helpful for us to be able to meditate on God’s Word throughout the day. In Psalm 1 we read:
We read that this man who meditates on God’s law day and night is like a tree whose leaf never withers and who prospers in everything he does. Wow. Who doesn’t want that?
How can you start memorizing?
Everyone learns differently. For me, flashcards are helpful when memorizing. But you can also ask the Holy Spirit for help here.
So, let’s go! Even if you memorize just one verse, it’s a step forward. And if you can’t or don’t want to memorize at all, then maybe at least the shortest verse in the Bible: “Jesus wept.” (John 11:35 NIV).
Even meditating on these two seemingly simple words is a benefit to our faith. To get you started on meditating… Just think about who was crying. God’s Son. For His friend Lazarus. In the same way, Jesus loves you too. He cares so deeply for you.
And that’s how easy it is to meditate on God’s Word.