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Bible Memory

Bible Memory
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 of God.

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 two years.

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.

The 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.

Click here for the Bible Memory Schedule or contact the office for a Bible Memory book.


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