Memorizing Scripture Is a Game Changer
Have you ever known anyone who could quote a passage from the Bible off the top of their head? Scripture that so perfectly fit the matter at hand?
For years, I wondered how people did that. I wanted to know the Bible as well as they did. I wanted to value scripture as much as them. I wanted to be able to think of scripture that fit specific situations and quote it that easily. So finally, I went for it.
I decided to start with James 3 (random, I know). I memorized one or two verses every day until I had the whole chapter memorized. When I first started, it seemed impossible. I really wanted to do it, but a part of me didn’t think I could. But my desire to know God’s Word wouldn’t let me give up.
I read this chapter before I started, but it wasn’t until I focused on one or two verses a day that it all truly sunk in and meant something to me.
Here’s what I learned
“We all stumble in many ways. Anyone who is never at fault in what they say is perfect, able to keep their whole body in check.”
One thing I was reminded of is that we all struggle. We all stumble in our walk with God. We can’t make excuses for it, but instead, we keep going. We can’t give up, and our faith will grow stronger because of our persistence.
“Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts.”
This chapter also helped me understand the importance of controlling your tongue. Our words are powerful. Things we say stay with people, good or bad. When we insult someone, it can hurt them more than we can even imagine. When we compliment someone, it can turn their whole day around.
“Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be.”
Our speech should glorify God, but instead, we tear people down with it. What’s worse is that we then turn around and praise God. James tells us that we cannot do this.
“All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and sea creatures are being tamed and have been tamed by mankind, but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.
Our tongues have to be more controlled. Once you can control your tongue, you can control yourself completely. And no one can do this alone. We all need God’s help to do this. This is probably the biggest lesson for me in this chapter. It’s what stuck with me the most even after I moved on from this chapter. It’s the part I still think most about today.
Memorizing scripture is so important
Honestly, there wasn’t an easy day, but quoting the whole third chapter of James on that last day was so rewarding. I got more out of one chapter than I ever expected. Memorizing these verses allowed me to focus on all the details and learn from them.
What surprised me is how often something came up afterward that was relevant to this chapter. I was able to talk to people about it and even quote verses without even thinking much about it. It was amazing just knowing the words and knowing what to say.
In Matthew 4, Jesus went to the desert for forty days. He didn’t have any food or water, and He was alone. Of course, Saran tried to tempt Him. But Jesus didn’t just say no. He quoted the Old Testament. He never even hesitated or thought about giving in. Jesus knew the Word of God by heart and used it to fight Satan’s attacks.
Obviously, we could argue that it was easy for Jesus. He is l
iterally God’s Son, so of course He knows scripture by heart. But I find it interesting that even Jesus of all people didn’t lean on His own word alone. Realistically, He could have just said no, and it could have been over. But He didn’t. If even Jesus relied on knowing scripture, then why shouldn’t we?
Memorizing scripture is one of the most rewarding things you can do, and I believe everyone should try it. You learn more than you expect and it helps you grow in your faith. It’s worth it.
“But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.”