“I have hidden your word in my heart…” (Psalm 119:11)
We really are so fortunate to have access to the Bible. In India, just delivering Bibles can be seen as trying to convert people to Christianity, and in several Indian states this is against the law! Not only are we fortunate because we can buy and distribute Bibles freely in our country, we are fortunate because God has provided us with the Bible in the first place. Our God is so gracious, that he has revealed himself clearly and concretely through the Scriptures.
Think about that for a moment. What would life be like if we had to guess about God? I feel sorry for the countless pagan cultures who attempted this. They would try their best to link different events together in order to understand their god/gods. In my Old Testament studies, I remember reading an example of a fox walking into a town at the time of a great disaster, and from that time on the pagans believed that a fox entering a town was a bad omen—that the gods were going to do something disastrous. It can sound silly, but really, it’s sad, it’s slavery. This is why the Bible is such an astounding gift!
Now, how should we respond to such a gift? This week, Adam will be speaking about the gift of God’s Word and how we grow by treasuring it and meditating upon it. To this end, I want to encourage you to pursue Bible memorisation. I have had limited experience memorising Scripture, but where I have done so, I can tell you that it has been a very rewarding experience. I believe it was Dallas Willard who claimed that Scripture memorisation was the most powerful and important of all the spiritual disciplines. I tend to agree and I think the Scriptures do too (as Adam’s sermon will make clear this week). My experience has been that at first memorisation feels merely academic. At first, it doesn’t seem that there are any great results by repeating verses and words over and over again. But slowly, as the Scriptures are committed to memory, they begin to come alive. Slowly, one begins to see links that they never saw before, one begins to understand God’s Word with greater depth and clarity. You also find yourself better equipped to respond to every fleeting thought, every lie, every temptation that comes through your mind. Jesus himself responded to Satan’s temptations by quoting Scripture (Luke 4:1-13).
So, let me encourage you to take up this important practice. Pray and ask God that memorisation wouldn’t inflate your sense of pride, but that it would grow you in your love for and knowledge of him.
Here are some useful resources to help get you started:
Bible Memory: Scripture Typer– This app is designed to help you memorise Scripture.
How Memorization Feeds Your Imagination – This is a blog series available from The Gospel Coalition. You can access the first blog through this link: https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/how-memorization-feeds-your-imagination/
May God grow us in our knowledge and love of him!
“I delight in your decrees; I will not neglect your word.” (Psalm 119:16)