[This is the first article in a series that we will be posting this month, focusing on the importance of Scripture memory.]
“’Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly…’” “’Let the word of Christ dwell in you…’ Oh, what was that last word! Hmm, richly? Yes, I think that’s it. ‘Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly.’” In this manner, Rebekah poured over her Bible as she memorized the third chapter of Colossians.
Why did she do this? Why go through hour after hour of hiding God’s Word in our heart? I believe that the Bible offers clear answers to these questions.
1. We are commanded to memorize Scripture
The first and most important reason that we should memorize Scripture is because God’s Word commands it. You may have come across one or two passages in your Bible reading, but did you know that Christ exhorts us in this way over 17 times? If He is this serious about memorization, we should be too.
One of the lessor known verses concerning memorization is Deuteronomy 32:46, which says, “And he said unto them, Set your hearts unto all the words which I testify among you this day, which ye shall command your children to observe to do, all the words of this law.” Notice the command, which charges us to set God’s teachings upon our hearts. This verse comes from Moses at his last speech to the people of Israel before his death. Then look at what he says next: “For it is not a vain thing for you; because it is your life: and through this thing ye shall prolong your days in the land, whither ye go over Jordan to possess it” (Deuteronomy 32:47). Memorizing God’s Word is not by any stretch of the imagination time wasted. It is our life! It prolongs our days both physically and spiritually.
2. It helps us guard against sin and the devil
Psalms 119:11 speaks such truth, leaving no doubt about the importance of God’s Word to us: “Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.” Why did David memorize Scripture? To help keep himself from sin. We must do the same.
Faith is our shield and the Word of God is our sword, according to Ephesians 6. How do we attain faith? Through the Word of God (Romans 10:17). So then, both our defense and our offense comes from the Word of God. I have seen personally in my life how the devil flees from the strength and power God’s Word. Often, if I am awakened in the middle of the night by a bad dream, I will quote Scripture, and fear will vanish and the peace of Christ overflows me.
Similarly, when I am tempted to walk past my sister struggling to lift a box of toys, the Holy Spirit reminds me of a verse that encourages me to put the needs and desires of others before my own (Philippians 2:3) and help her. In this way, the Sword keeps me from sin.
If we are not constantly filling our minds with the truth, the lies of the world and the enemy will overpower us. Memorization places the truth in our minds every minute of the day.
3. It helps us share with unbelievers
What better tool to use in sharing the Gospel than the Gospel itself? The following verses show the importance of using God’s Word when witnessing.
“So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.” –Isaiah 55:11
“So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” –Romans 10:17
“And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.” -2 Timothy 3:15
“The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple.” –Psalm 19:7
God’s Word is the power that converts the soul, that does not return void, and that makes us wise for salvation. As 1 Peter 3:15 exhorts, we must prepare ourselves for witnessing conversations by hiding God’s Word in our heart, because our mere words are not sufficient. Only the living and powerful Word of God is “quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart” (Hebrews 4:12). Let us wield this sword of truth as warriors in the kingdom of God.
4. It gives us a deeper knowledge of and love for God’s Word
Ten times in Psalm 119 David talks about how he delights in God’s Word. A diligent study and memorization of God’s Word has prompted this. He has seen the words of the Lord and encountered the benefits that they bring, and will not let them go now.
As we spend time studying and memorizing God’s Word, we will grow to love it more. It has been said that we crave what we consume. If you are always eating junk food, the healthy things that are actually good for your body may seem flavorless. On the other hand, as you wean yourself of the sugarcoated food, the nourishing things like salad taste better and better. It is the same with His Word. The more you consume it by reading, studying, and memorizing, the more you will begin to see its value and long for more and more. Just try it!
There are countless more reasons for memorizing God’s Word. I challenge you to begin the memorization journey yourself and experience these benefits firsthand. I would love to hear your discoveries and share your testimony in a future article. Email me at theindwellingwordministries @ gmail . com. I can’t wait to hear what God is doing in your life through the memorization of His Word!
In next week’s article, we’ll share some tips on how to memorize Scripture.
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