Oh, how I love your law! I
meditate on it all day long. Your commands make me wiser than
my enemies for they are ever with me.
- Psalm 119:7-8
The memorization of God's Holy Word is a vital part of Christian
education. It is also an important discipline for every true child
The scripture not only exhorts us continually to lay up God's Word in
our hearts, but it also demonstrates God's concern for our
memorization of His Word. Some of the Psalms follow an acrostic
structure to help the people remember them. Many or all of the
Psalms were intended to be sung, and music has a peculiar power to
help us remember the words attached to the music. God commanded
Moses to write his final words to the people in the form of a song,
so that the people would not forget those words (Deut. 31:19),
because "They are not just idle words for you --- they are your
life." (Deut.32:47). The New Testament also encourages us to let the
word of Christ dwell in us richly and to be singing and making
melody in our hearts to the Lord.
We have found the use of music and rhythm to be an extremely valuable
aid to the memorization of scripture. Most of the major passages
which are memorized have been set to music (listen
here). While some of the songs
are original compositions, most are set to tunes which are already
familiar to most Christians. The songs are sung for several
weeks while the passage is being memorized, so that the student will
learn the passage as a whole and not just in bits and pieces.
The verses which are not set to music are printed with underlines to
enable the group to speak them together with a definite rhythm so
that the underlined syllables will fall on a steady pulse.
The passages chosen for memorization come from various portions of the
scripture and seek to impart a balanced understanding and
foundational knowledge of the basic truths of God's Word. Some
passages are memorized by all of the students in grades four through
twelve. This is a help for school or families to have certain verses
that everyone is memorizing at the same time. Other verses are
selected for just a few grades to memorize; for example, the ninth
through twelfth grade verses co-ordinate with their Bible courses
which spend one year in the Gospels, two years in the Epistles, and
one year in the Old Testament. The entire program is set up in a
four-year cycle, although many of the passages actually repeat every
The program is structured on the principle that periodic review is
important if the passages memorized are to be retained. Thus, many
of the fifth and sixth grade verses are verses which were memorized
in grades one through three; the same proverbs are repeated in
several grades; the passages which fourth through twelfth grade
memorize together are repeated every four years; and the catechism
questions are repeated every two years.
program is designed to coincide with a thirty-six week school year.
A weekly test is given --- a written test for grades four through
twelve and an oral test for the younger grades. The program can be
adapted for use in Sunday School or family devotions. The scripture
songs can also be used simply as an aid to memorizing certain
passages as a congregation or church family.
for the Bible Memory Schedule or
office for a Bible Memory book.