Suggestions for Memorization

Can I offer some help for memorizing Scripture?

I realize that memorization can seem intimidating. Honestly, I’ve struggled with it my entire life. But along the way I’ve learned two things that are key to being successful.

 

Consistency

 

A few minutes every day will provide long-lasting results. Don’t think you need to spend hours (or even half-hours) each day to be successful. A few minutes of repetition is sufficient. Think creatively about how you can find those minutes near the beginning of every day. You’ll be glad you did.

 

Repetition

 

Repeating verses several times in succession is the best way to plant God’s Word into your heart. Repetition is also a primary means of meditating on Scripture. Think about and pray about the words you are committing to memory. This experience is not vain repetition, but is a means of hearing and understanding God’s Word.

 

A Simple Method

 

Try this out each week:

Day 1.  Read the verse out loud in context of the surrounding passage. Ask God to give you both understanding of the bid idea of the passage as well as help in committing this passage to memory.

Day 2.  Review any previously memorized verses by reciting them out load from memory. Then read the new verse out load 10 times. Then repeat the new verse 10 times more without looking (peek if necessary).

Day 3.  Review any previously memorized verses by reciting them out load from memory. Then recite the new verse 10 times without looking.

Day 4-7.  Review any previously memorized verses by reciting them out load from memory. Then review the new verse 1 time without looking.

Plan to review previously memorized verses every day for at least 50 days. After that time review them every week or two. It’s a good idea to choose one day each week for your long-term review.

 

God bless you as you memorize and meditate on Scripture this year!

In Christ,

Michael

Week 1 Bible Readings

New Testament

1 January:  Matthew 1:1-2:12

2 January:  Matthew 2:13-3:17

3 January:  Matthew 4:1-5:12

4 January:  Matthew 5:13-48

5 January:  Matthew 6

6 January:  Matthew 7:1-23

7 January:  Matthew 7:24-8:34

Old Testament

1 January:  Psalm 1-3

2 January:  Psalm 4-6

3 January:  Psalm 7-9

4 January:  Psalm 10-12

5 January:  Psalm 13-15

6 January:  Psalm 16, 17

7 January:  Psalm 18, 19

What’s Your Plan For 2012?

Another year is upon us. It’s a time to reflect on the past and look forward to the future. Many of us make resolutions this time of year. How about you? Are you making any resolutions for the new year?

Let me offer a suggestion.

Something we can do together.

Will you read the Bible with me this year? Will you memorize some Scripture with me this year?

Reading the Bible and memorizing Scripture can only take a few minutes every day, but the benefits can be life-changing. Let me share with you a few:

 

The Bible is God’s Word

 

The whole Bible is breathed out by God (2 Timothy 3:16). It is God’s Word to us through the inspired writings of Scripture. The Bible has the authority of God behind it.

 

The Bible is our spiritual sustenance

 

Jesus reminds us that we live not by physical sustenance but by God’s Word (Matthew 4:4).  Just as we need physical food to nourish and sustain our bodies, so we need God’s Word to nourish and sustain our souls.

 

The Bible defeats sin

 

Scripture helps us defeat sin in our lives (Psalm 119:9, 11). The Bible helps us defend against sin and actively battle it in our lives.

 

The Bible reveals God

 

Scripture is a revelation of God and his work in the world (Psalm 19). By it we understand our place in creation and his many attributes as the creator.

 

The Bible reveals Jesus

 

Scripture is a revelation of God’s greatest gift to us (John 3:16). As Jesus walked with two of his disciples on the Emmaus road, “he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself” (Luke 24:27). God’s Word is about Jesus!

 

Let’s do it together

 

Let me invite you to join me each week in reading through parts of the Bible and memorizing a portion of Scripture each week. Each week I will post Scripture for reading and memorizing. Follow along and be changed by God’s Word.

 

A final encouragement

 

Let’s follow the example of the Psalmist who said, “Oh how I love your law! It is my meditation all the day” (Psalm 119:97). The Psalmist also describes the one who is blessed: “His delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night” (Psalm 1:2). May we be blessed as we read God’s Word and memorize it this year!

Week 52 Readings

December 24:  2 Chronicles 29; Revelation 15 (family); Zechariah 11; John 14 (individual)

December 25:  2 Chronicles 30; Revelation 16 (family); Zechariah 12; John 15 (individual)

December 26:  2 Chronicles 31; Revelation 17 (family); Zechariah 13; John 16 (individual)

December 27:  2 Chronicles 32; Revelation 18 (family); Zechariah 14; John 17 (individual)

December 28:  2 Chronicles 33; Revelation 19 (family); Malachi 1; John 18 (individual)

December 29:  2 Chronicles 34; Revelation 20 (family); Malachi 2; John 19 (individual)

December 30:  2 Chronicles 35; Revelation 21 (family); Malachi 3; John 20 (individual)

December 31:  2 Chronicles 36; Revelation 22 (family); Malachi 4; John 21 (individual)

Week 51 Readings

December 17:  2 Chronicles 19, 20; Revelation 8 (family); Zechariah 4; John 7 (individual)

December 18:  2 Chronicles 21; Revelation 9 (family); Zechariah 5; John 8 (individual)

December 19:  2 Chronicles 22, 23; Revelation 10 (family); Zechariah 6; John 9 (individual)

December 20:  2 Chronicles 24; Revelation 11 (family); Zechariah 7; John 10 (individual)

December 21:  2 Chronicles 25; Revelation 12 (family); Zechariah 8; John 11 (individual)

December 22:  2 Chronicles 26; Revelation 13 (family); Zechariah 9; John 12 (individual)

December 23:  2 Chronicles 27, 28; Revelation 14 (family); Zechariah 10; John 13 (individual)

Week 50 Readings

December 10:  2 Chronicles 10; Revelation 1 (family); Zephaniah 2; Luke 24 (individual)

December 11:  2 Chronicles 11, 12; Revelation 2 (family); Zephaniah 3; John 1 (individual)

December 12:  2 Chronicles 13; Revelation 3 (family); Haggai 1; John 2 (individual)

December 13:  2 Chronicles 14, 15; Revelation 4 (family); Haggai 2; John 3 (individual)

December 14:  2 Chronicles 16; Revelation 5 (family); Zechariah 1; John 4 (individual)

December 15:  2 Chronicles 17; Revelation 6 (family); Zechariah 2; John 5 (individual)

December 16:  2 Chronicles 18; Revelation 7 (family); Zechariah 3; John 6 (individual)

Is Jesus More Valuable Than Life?

Have you thought about what it will be like to be with Christ after you die? (One of you is going to say, “Didn’t they write a song about that?”) It’s true. I can only imagine what it will be like to see Jesus face to face. But as amazing as that will be, the reality is that we still have to depart this world. And for each of us that means death.

 

Life or Death

 

Paul reflected on this reality in his letter to the Philippians. In the first part of his letter he expressed his confidence in Christ and his desire to honor him whether by his life or by his death (1:20). At this time in his life Paul felt the weight of death. Would he have to die for his faith in Christ? Or would he continue to live and be fruitful in his labor (1:22)?

 

I Choose Death

 

Check out what Paul really wanted.

“My desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better” (1:23).

How many of us could say the same thing? Sure, most of us would agree that it would be awesome to be with Jesus! But is Christ so valuable to us that we would be willing to die this day to be with him? Is He far better than our next breath?

 

The Value of Jesus

 

For Paul, He was. This life, as wonderful and joy-filled as it can be, is far less than Christ himself. Paul didn’t love this world too much. He was filled with hope and joy in Christ! His hope and joy was not in this life. This life is filled with opportunities to be faithful in service to God, but it is not all there is. There is more. There is Christ.

I want to love Christ so much that being with him means more than all of the pleasures of this world. I don’t want to love anything more than Christ. All that I can experience in this life is pale in comparison with knowing Jesus. My desire is to depart and be with Christ. That is far better.

What about you?