I mentioned last week that a friend and I just finished memorizing the book of James. She approached me several months ago about memorizing together, and I agreed despite secretly wondering if I could actually do it.
I knew memorizing Scripture was beneficial, of course, but as my friend described her passion for God’s Word, I realized that she had some really great reasons for memorizing that I hadn’t considered before. Her mission is to memorize as much of the Bible as she can, and she’s well on her way: she’s already memorized several other books and chapters in addition to James, and she’s currently working on Colossians and Romans. (She also had an aunt who could recite the entire New Testament. Consider me impressed!)
Here are a few reasons my friend and I wanted to memorize:
- The Bible is God’s Word, and we want to hide it in our hearts so we don’t sin against him (Psalm 119:11).
- We want to “always be prepared to give an answer to anyone who asks” us the reason for the hope that we have (1 Peter 3:15). What better way to know these answers than to know God’s Word by heart?
- My friend sees a future in missions, and she may end up in a place someday where the Bible isn’t allowed. If that’s the case, she will already have much of it stored away in her mind so she doesn’t need the physical Book to rely on.
- Any of us could lose the freedom to read a physical Bible someday, and it’s always a good idea to have as much of it memorized as we can.
- There are several Muslim people in my community who have the entire Quran or large portions of it memorized. If they are that dedicated to their religion, why aren’t we equally dedicated to our faith? This one really convicted me.
- It builds our faith. There’s something powerful about having God’s Word in our hearts, meditating on it, and speaking it out loud.
- It gives us things to pray when we don’t know what else to pray. Really, there is nothing better to pray than God’s own Word – I believe those are the most powerful prayers a person can pray!
- It declares to the enemy what the truth is and Who has the ultimate authority. When I’m under spiritual attack, I try to find promises in the Bible to declare over myself and to the enemy. These Biblical truths come to mind much easier if I’ve already memorized them.
I don’t think many of us would ever say memorizing Scripture
is a bad thing to do, but these are just a few reasons it can be such a
beneficial practice. As difficult as it can be, I’m glad I took the time to
memorize James – I know I won’t regret it. I plan to do my best to retain what
I’ve memorized, and maybe I’ll even tackle another book in the future…we’ll
see! For now, at least, I’m on a much-needed break. 😉
Are you someone who does a lot of memorizing? What motivates you to memorize God’s Word?