Something important wasn’t given enough emphasis in the first month of Listen When He Speaks.
Scripture memorization. And the month’s theme verse.
It didn’t get a prominent place on the printable list, not really much space at all. As I’ve said, this plan is imperfect. But it’s a helpful tool.
Why Should We Memorize Scripture?
Memorization doesn’t come easy for many. Even when we love Scripture, memorization can feel like a chore. Another thing we should do, which means cramming one more thing into our already busy days.
We don’t want our relationship with God to feel like a chore, but there’s no way around the fact that if we want to grow spiritually, we’re going to have to make an effort, and do things when we don’t feel like doing them. Train wisely, not try harder, as John Ortberg says.
It’s foolish to think we can honor and please God if we don’t know what He expects of His people. We can’t grow in relationship with someone we don’t know, and we can’t be sure our understanding of Him is correct apart from what He tells us about Himself in His Word. We all have opinions on what is best, what God expects, and Who He is, based on insufficient information. We want God and His commands to fit what makes us feel good. We want a comfortable relationship with a God who validates who we think we are, instead of a truly loving relationship that challenges us so we can become who we are meant to be.
We can’t know God if we don’t know His Word.We can't know God if we don't know His Word. Click To Tweet
Satan Knows God’s Word
Prove that I am the Son of God by turning a stone to bread? It is written: Man shall not live on bread alone (Deuteronomy 8:3).
Be given the entire world if I bow before you? It is written: You shall worship the Lord your God and serve Him only (Deuteronomy 6:13).
One of Satan’s temptations recorded for us in the Bible has an interesting twist that should give us pause:
“If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down; for it is written,
‘He will command His angels concerning You’;
‘On their hands they will bear You up,
So that You will not strike Your foot against a stone.’”
Matthew 4:6, NASB
Satan quoted a psalm to tempt Jesus!
Look, Jesus, we both know You’ll be fine if You jump off the tippy-top of the Temple… If you really are the Son of God… Go on. Prove it… God said You’ll be fine…
Jesus said to him, “On the other hand, it is written, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.’”
Matthew 4:7, NASB
Scripture needs to be understood in light of the rest of Scripture. Do we want to make it easy to be swayed by misuse of Scripture? I don’t!
Satan knows God’s Word and twists it by using it selectively. We should know it, too, and use it to fight back. It’s difficult to recognize or refute a lie when we’re unsure of and not armed with truth.Satan knows God's Word. We should know God's Word to fight Satan's lies. Click To Tweet
As Jesus answered temptation with Scripture, the Word of God is a weapon for us to fight necessary spiritual battles.
Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.
Ephesians 6:10-12, NASB
The only offensive weapon listed in the full armor of God?
…the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
Ephesians 6:17, NASB
We need all the other listed armor to protect ourselves, and we need Scripture to fight. Knowledge of God’s Word not only gives us a weapon to overcome our enemy, it also strengthens our defenses.
Even in a Wesleyan, holiness denomination understanding of sanctification, there is always room to grow in Christlikeness.
And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.
Romans 12:2, NASB
My mind isn’t going to be renewed feeding on the garbage this world tries to shove down my throat, or the deceptively sweet treats if serves up. It needs the milk, the bread, the meat of God’s Word.
Fruit of Brokenness exists to encourage. But here’s the thing, my words can only go so far. Sharing our experiences can help others in similar circumstances. There’s power in shared stories. But if I’m only giving you me… me is all you get. I’m not enough. If I’m not pointing you to the One who made each of us unique, loves us beyond imagination, and sustains us through whatever comes our way, I’m failing you.
As the Holy Spirit brings back to mind Scripture we have learned, when we need to hear it, He also brings it to mind to speak into others’ lives. What have you stored in your heart for Him to bring back to the surface when you or someone else needs the encouragement of His Truth?
Learn It. Live It.
We can talk more later about methods. I’ve been using the free Remember Me app. And simple index cards can be a great tool! What are your favorite Bible memorization methods and tools? I’d also love to hear how has God used Scripture you have memorized… Comment below!
The translation you learn it in is up to you.