20130313_memorize

There are few spiritual disciplines more rewarding than memorizing Bible passages. Here are a few:

FOR FELLOWSHIP WITH GOD

The way God chiefly communicates with us today is through His written Word. There are many ideas that people might have of God and their relationship with Him, but such thoughts beg the question: Are they true? Are they biblical? If we want to know God and fellowship with Him, we can start with the means He chose to best express His very nature, personality, character, and works. We do that through the Bible. “The Lord revealed himself to Samuel at Shiloh by the word of the Lord” (1 Samuel 3:21). Rather than meditate on our own premonitions about who the Lord is, let us meditate on His revealed truth.

TO PUT US IN OUR PLACE

Scripture also puts us in our place. It reminds us who we are (Psalm 139:14-16), and it reminds us who God is (Psalm 139:1,7,13). This is good for us; after all, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom” (Psalm 111:10).

FOR CONFORMITY TO CHRIST

When we see Jesus on the pages of Scripture and savor Him, we are more changed into His likeness. Paul wrote that when we behold God’s glory, we “are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another” (2 Corinthians 3:18).

FOR THE BATTLE AGAINST SATAN, SIN, AND FLESH

The Word of God is the saint’s weapon for slaying sin (Ephesians 6:17). When we yield this sword of the Spirit, we can “put to death the deeds of the body” (Romans 8:13). Scripture is also our first line of defense in the guard for purity (Psalm 119:9-11). Jesus Himself, when tempted by Satan in the wilderness, did not hesitate to recite Scripture from memory. This send Satan fleeing (Matthew 4).

FOR THE FULLNESS OF JOY

The gospel message of Scripture points us to the sufficiency of God’s grace offered in Jesus—our fullness of joy. After describing the grace we receive in Jesus, John wrote, “these things we write to you that your joy may be full” (1 John 1:4 NKJV).

FOR EFFECTIVE WITNESSING

Learn how to present the gospel message using Scripture, and be ready in season and out of season to share it.

“in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you” (1 Peter 3:15).

JUMP START YOUR PRAYER LIFE

In Genesis 31:2, the Lord God Almighty made an incredible promise to Jacob: “I will be with you.” Later, when walking through trials, Jacob cried out to God in prayer: “But you said, ‘I will surely do you good…’” (Genesis 32:12, emphasis added). Even Old Testament promises like these can fuel our Christian walk today (2 Corinthians 7:1). As heirs of God’s promises (Galatians 3:16,29), these can “jump start” our prayer life too!

Of course, there are other benefits to memorizing Scripture. Can you name some?