At a weekend ladies’ retreat with my mom and sister, I once heard an amazing, and also true, story. Would you like to hear it? Okay, great! An elderly lady began to memorize Scripture. Now, most people her age would probably have thought it unnecessary, since after all, the older you get, the harder it is to memorize. She had made it all of her life without those verses, so what was the point in working so hard on them now? Little did she know that while she was elderly, there were still many years left to her life, and these years were going to bring a hard trial. The lady went blind. She could no longer see to read her Bible, but she had tucked away many Bible verses into her heart, and these were available to her even after her eyesight was gone. In this post, we will be looking at 9 reasons to memorize Scripture!
All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.
1. Memorize Scripture for Meditation
There is a lot of power in meditating on Scripture. We don’t have time to delve into too much about Biblical meditation today, but I hope to post on it more in the future. What we think about is so important. Meditating on Scripture is a way to keep our thoughts pure and focus our hearts on the Lord. If we don’t have verses memorized, though, then we can’t make full use of the gift of Biblical meditation.
Say you want to meditate on Scripture when you are driving, or when you are in the shower, or when you are trying to fall asleep at night. If you have Bible verses in your heart, then you will be prepared to meditate in these situations and so many others.
2. Memorize Scripture to Battle Temptation
We are no match for Satan – on our own that is. He knows our weaknesses and the things that will tempt us and lead us astray. Thank the Lord that we are not on our own, but we have the Holy Spirit to enable us to withstand Satan’s attacks. One way the Holy Spirit helps strengthen us is by bringing to mind Scripture verses.
Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.
Another one of the reasons to memorize Scripture is to have those verses ready for the Holy Spirit to bring to mind. Temptation is a battle, and who goes into battle without a weapon? We need to pick up our sword and have it always with us, ready for any ambush we may meet. “And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Ephesians 6:17”
When Jesus was tempted in the wilderness, how did He combat Satan? By quoting Bible verses! I believe that Jesus memorized Bible verses while He was here on earth. He knew how powerful and necessary the Word of God is in facing temptation.
Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil. And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungred. And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread. But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.
3. Memorize Scripture for Witnessing
Witnessing brings out a new dynamic to the Scriptures that we need to memorize. For one thing, we need to learn verses relevant to leading someone to Jesus as well as verses that will help to answer some of the questions that are commonly asked. God’s Word is powerful, and the more we can use it when we are witnessing instead of our own words, the better. We don’t have to know all the answers before we can witness (a good thing because otherwise none of us could do it), but we are responsible to seek to equip ourselves with God’s Word.
But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and be ready always to give an answer to every man who asketh you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear.
1 Peter 3:15
Another thing to keep in mind is that you should try to learn where some of these Bible verses are found. It’s not as helpful to just say, “It says in the Bible somewhere,” as it is to say, “It says in Romans 3:23, ‘For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.’”
I don’t know about you, but I don’t know the reference for most verses I know. I didn’t even get the Romans 3:23 reference correct when I was trying to remember it for this post (I had the right chapter, wrong verse). While we should try to learn some references when we can, at least knowing the book of the Bible where it is found is a good start.
4. Memorize Scripture for Conversations
Scripture is good to know not just for witnessing but for any kind of conversation. As Christians, we should seek to have everything that we do be centered around the Lord. When we know Bible verses, we will be able to bring those into our conversations in relevant places. Not only that, while we may not always actually quote the verse, if we immerse ourselves in God’s Word, it will be apparent in our speech. What is in our hearts will come out in our words and actions.
O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things.
5. Memorize Scripture for When You Don’t Have Your Bible
When I think of not having a Bible, I often think about persecution and the people in different parts of the world who do not have access to Bibles. We never know if a day will come when we will live in a place like that. But, even if we never face that, there are always times when we don’t have access to a Bible.
When we are working or doing something where we can’t pick up a Bible, then we will need to rely on the verses we have already learned. There is also the possibility of losing our eyesight and not having the privilege of reading the Bible for ourselves. Whatever situations we may or may not face, let’s commit to learning more verses together, shall we?
6. Memorize Scripture for Prayer
Did you know that prayer is meant to be a two-way communication? Yes! Prayer is not just you talking to God, but it is God talking to you. There are a couple of different ways that we can hear from the Lord while we are praying. One of those is probably what came to your mind: His Holy Spirit speaks to our hearts, prompting us and guiding us.
There is also another way we can hear from the Lord in our prayer time. That is through the Bible! Now, you may be used to thinking of prayer and Bible reading as two different things, but really they go hand in hand. We can talk to the Lord in prayer and hear Him talk to us through His Word. One prayer that I often like to pray from the Psalms before I read my Bible is, “Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law.” Psalm 119:18.
Now, if you’re like me, you don’t always have a Bible in front of you when you are praying. This is where Scripture memory comes in. If we have hidden those verses in our hearts, then as we talk to God in prayer, He can bring them to mind and speak back to us. You can carry on a two-way conversation with Jesus as you go about your day!
7. Memorize Scripture to be a Good Example
We’ve already seen several good reasons we need to memorize Scripture. This one builds on those. Since there are so many good reasons to memorize Scripture, we should want those around us to do it too, right? And, there is probably no better way to inspire the people around you to memorize than for you to memorize. We all know that it is important to practice what you preach!
Work consistently on your Scripture memory, and then encourage others to do the same. Be willing to come alongside them and do it with them! They can reap the blessings of the verses they learn, and so can you.
8. Memorize Scripture for Comfort
We know that trials, disappointments, failures, and suffering are all part of life. To some degree, most of us face something hard or unpleasant every day. This is another of the many reasons to memorize Scripture. When we have God’s Word memorized, then we can lean on it when the hard times come.
Remember the word unto thy servant, upon which thou hast caused me to hope. This is my comfort in my affliction: for thy word hath quickened me.
You may not always have time to grab your Bible, but right in the middle of the difficulty, you can recite a verse. There is so much power in the words of Scripture, and God can use them to calm your heart and strengthen you for facing the difficulty.
9. Memorize Scripture for Praising the Lord
Another way that you can use the Scripture that you memorize is to praise the Lord. There are so many good verses full of praise to our wonderful Lord – especially the Psalms which were like the hymnbook of Israel. Our Lord is worthy of praise. One of the reasons He put us on earth was so that we could praise Him and bring Him glory. And what better way to praise the Lord than by using the perfect, inspired words of Scripture?
If you have these words tucked away in your heart, then wherever you go, they will be available to you. When you are outside walking and look up into the beautiful canopy overhead, you can tell Jesus, “When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained; What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him? Psalm 8:3-4”
When you bend down to look at a beautiful flower raising its head to the sun, you can praise Him that “The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the Word of our GOD shall stand forever. Isaiah 40:8” As you work, you can thank Him for the privilege He has given you of “Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. 1 Corinthians 10:31” Hide God’s Word in your heart so that you can use it to praise Him for His great goodness!
- You need God’s Word in your mind and heart so that you can meditate on it, and so it will come out in your conversations and when you are witnessing.
- You need to memorize Scripture so that you can pray it back to God and hear Him speak to you through it, and so that you will have it for daily comfort.
- You need God’s Word as your sword to defeat Satan’s attacks.
Can you think of any other reasons we should memorize Scripture? What verses do you think are especially important to memorize?
Until next time, hide God’s Word in your heart!