Monday, January 26, 2009

MMM: The Power of Memorization

Over the weekend, I listened to a sermon by John Piper called "If My Words Abide in You." I actually thought it was a sermon on prayer that I had gotten halfway through but not finished (I couldn't remember the title of the one I'd started a couple of weeks before); to my surprise, it was a sermon on Scripture memorization. Sweet providence of God to encourage me!

The more I memorize God's Word, the more convinced I am of the importance and value of this discipline. This sermon gave me fresh motivation to persevere in memorization, so I wanted to share with you Piper's eight reasons for committing Scripture to memory:
  1. Memorizing Scripture makes meditation possible at times when I can’t be reading the Bible, and meditation is the pathway of deeper understanding.
  2. Memorizing Scripture strengthens my faith because faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of Christ, and that happens when I am hearing the word in my head.
  3. Memorizing Scripture shapes the way I view the world by conforming my mind to God’s viewpoint.
  4. Memorizing Scripture makes God’s word more readily accessible for overcoming temptation to sin, because God’s warnings and promises are the way we conquer the deceitful promises of sin.
  5. Memorizing Scripture guards my mind by making it easier to detect error—and the world is filled with error, since the god of this world is a liar.
  6. Memorizing Scripture enables me to hit the devil in the face with a force he cannot resist, and so protect myself and my family from his assaults.
  7. Memorizing Scripture provides the strongest and sweetest words for ministering to others in need.
  8. Memorizing Scripture provides the matrix for fellowship with Jesus because he talks to me through his word, and I talk to him in prayer.
I hope you'll find these arguments compelling enough to make your own discoveries about the value and power of memorizing God's Word! I know I have found it an incredibly worthwhile pursuit, and I expect that the benefits of memorizing Milton Vincent's Gospel Narrative will continue long after Mega Memory Month is over.


Anonymous said...

Another motivating post, Amy! Thank you for taking the time to share two in one day--what a treat!

Anonymous said...

I am not able to escape the conviction that I need to get more of God's Word into my "diet". One way is through memorization. I am so grateful that you pointed us to this teaching. I am going to listen to it this afternoon while the kids do "quiet time". Thanks!!!! and thanks for your inspiring example of commitment to the memorization of God's Word, and other helpful memory projects.

Anonymous said...

That sermon was excellent! Wasn't the beginning so powerful where he quoted all that memorized scripture?! It was so convicting. I listened to it right when I switched verses, and it motivated me even more! Funny, I was just going to comment on your blog today and ask you if you'd listened to it!

Amy said...

yes, Danielle, I loved the beginning! I thought it was really neat how the different passages he selected flowed from one to the next. very powerful.