Memorizing Scripture is seen as a bit old fashioned now that believers have smartphones that can load any Bible Verse from any translation with a swipe of a finger. But, the challenge for disciplemakers is helping them to see that having the Bible at one’s fingertips is different than having it on our minds and in our hearts. Yet, so many struggle with noisy thoughts or ‘stinkin’ thinking”.
Sticky Thought Analogy – Have you ever gotten a song stuck in your head and didn’t know why? Often a single word or phrase is all it takes. From there, the song just seems to spring forth. That same thing can happen when the cadences of Scripture are running through your head.
Mental Toolbox Analogy – Your mind uses the tools it has available. As a child, it’s the vocabulary you acquire—gaining new words for objects and experiences. As we grow older, we use stories and metaphors to make sense of our lives. And with age, we have the opportunity to choose what tools we add to our mental toolbox—God’s Word is one of them.
When we memorize Scripture, we make it available at any time, not just at the swipe of a smartphone. God’s words can be on our minds and in our hearts when we wake and when we lie down, when we go for a run and when we stand in the shower. Scripture can permeate our thoughts at times when smartphones can’t. If we choose to memorize them, God’s words can accompany us as we walk down the street, and our thoughts can meditate on them as we drive down the highway—all while keeping our eyes up.
Thinking biblically means having God’s Living Word working in us and through us. When we memorize Scripture, we invite God to speak into our hearts in times of both joy and sorrow, excitement and struggle. God’s Word goes to work, humbling us and encouraging us, and straightening us out when we get crooked.
But memorizing Scripture also becomes a blessing to others. When God’s Word is in us, God can encourage others through us. When we find ourselves talking with friends and neighbors, God’s Word is readily available, not at hand, but at heart. Not in our pockets, but on our lips. We can speak God’s words readily and with love, not while fiddling with a smartphone. Scripture has the potential to become a part of our everyday conversations, making us a blessing to others.
Figuring out how to memorize Scripture is where most people give up. That’s why The Navigators® incorporated it in its study for new believers, Growing in Christ and created an entire Topical Memory System. Each is designed to immerse us in Scripture by studying each memory verse. As someone begins to commit a verse to scripture, they’ll wrestle with the meaning, as it penetrates the innermost places of their soul, dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow. They emerge being not only being able to quote the verse, but also knowing the verse’s context.
If you are mentoring someone who is seeking a meaningful way to memorize Scripture, take a look at the Topical Memory System. If you have someone who is new to the Bible or new in their faith, start them off with the healthy spiritual habits in the Growing in Christ with lessons and corresponding scriptures on assurance of salvation and foundational insights on Christian Living.
Smartphone Analogy: People spend thousands of dollars on Smartphones, bills, apps each year, so they have relevant information at their fingertips. Memorizing God’s Word is allows them to have His Supreme Wisdom and Living Truths readily available in their heart and mind. That’s a secure investment. It can’t be lost, waterlogged, or smashed. It won’t grow old or become outdated. And unlike your smartphone, it will never be obsolete. But most important, it helps you take your thoughts captive and helps you abide in God’s peace.