There are so many demands on our memories today. How many of us daily bemoan our limited or faulty memories? How many unique passwords do we use? How many Westheights friends do we have? How many methodologies and procedures do our jobs require? How many tasks do we need to accomplish in a day, that get pushed into and added into our next day when incomplete? Certainly, we have tools that help us with each of these situations (name tag Sundays, for example, or Remember the Milk) so why is it important that we memorize scripture, which we can just look up in our apps?
Have you ever heard of the phrase “garbage in, garbage out”? Well, the opposite also applies. Psalm 119:11 says “I have hidden your Word in my heart that I might not sin against you.” The emphasis of this message series is not on rote memorization but on internalizing scripture. We don’t need to memorize scripture verbatim but if we understand, internalize and make scripture an integral part of our lives, good things will naturally flow from us. “Good things in, good things out!”
Dallas Willard, professor of Philosophy at the University of Southern California, wrote “Bible memorization is absolutely fundamental to spiritual formation. If I had to choose between all the disciplines of the spiritual life, I would choose Bible memorization, because it is a fundamental way of filling our minds with what it needs. This book of the law shall not depart out of your mouth. That’s where you need it! How does it get in your mouth? Memorization” (“Spiritual Formation in Christ for the Whole Life and Whole Person” in Vocatio, Vol. 12, no. 2, Spring, 2001, p. 7).
This first week of this message series, we started with an easy verse to memorize – John 3:16. Click here if you want to save a digital card for this reference.
VERSES TO MEMORIZE: JOHN 3:16
Message by Josh Mutter – July 7, 2019
John 3:16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
SCRIPTURE MEMORY TIPS
1. Repeat the verse out loud
2. Memorize the reference first
3. Learn the first phrase (then add more)
4. Reflect on what it means
John 3:14-21 Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him. For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed. But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God.
JOHN 3:16 INVITES US TO …
1. Accept God’s love
2. Internalize God’s love
3. Share God’s love