Why You Need to Memorize Bible Verses (and Why It Doesn’t Have to be Hard!)

If you want to be strengthened and transformed by what you read in the Bible, you must make it a practice to memorize Bible verses.

Memorize bible verses

MEMORIZING SCRIPTURE

If you want to be strengthened and transformed by what you read in the Bible, you should be memorizing scripture. Because when hardships arise, the last thing you’ll feel like doing is some Biblical research.

The best thing you can do is the prep work beforehand so that if you know an area of temptation, you have a verse that automatically comes to mind in that situation to get you out of it.

"I can do all things through him who gives me strength." -Philippians 4:13

Or if you have moments where you feel exhausted or alone, you have verses of strength and encouragement that are sitting on the tip of your tongue.

"I will never leave you nor forsake you." -Joshua 1:5

When I was young, most of my memory verses came from Sunday school songs. Now as an adult, my kids come home teaching us new Bible songs such as The Fruit of the Spirit. These are a simple way to recall positive character traits quickly and accurately. We use them as a foundation for our family rules at home.

"For the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control."  -Galatians 5:22

In the past when I’ve dealt with worry and anxiety, my go-to was Philippians 4:6-7.

"Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." -Philippians 4:6-7

When my children are acting up, I find verses that they can memorize to encourage them to make better choices.

"Children obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord." -Colossians 3:20
Memorize bible verses

EVEN JESUS MEMORIZED SCRIPTURE

When Jesus was tempted in the desert after his baptism, each of his responses to Satan were scriptures. He didn’t flip to the concordance in his Bible and find a verse that corresponded (although that’s a great way to start memorizing scripture!), he knew it from memory.

This wasn’t because he was God in the flesh, it was because he studied scripture since he was a child. It wasn’t just a weekly reading, it was habitual. It was ingrained into his personality.

Scripture punctuated his conversations with others, helped him cope with hardship, and determined his decisions. It molded his mind and shaped his speech.

"But he answered, [to Satan] 'It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.'" -Matthew 4:4
Memorize bible verses

5 TIPS FOR MEMORIZING SCRIPTURE

1. PICK A VERSE

Choose one that relates to an issue you’re dealing with. Use your concordance to help.

2. LOOK IT UP IN MULTIPLE VERSIONS

By looking it up in multiple versions, you’ll gain extra insight into it’s context and application. Also, check the footnotes for commentary.

3. WRITE IT DOWN

Journal about it, write it over and over. What did you learn from the passage, what encourages you, or what actions does it inspire you to take?

4. DISPLAY YOUR VERSE

Post your verse in multiple places you will see around the house. Index card taped to the door, expo marker on the bathroom mirror, or wallpaper on your phone.

5. GET YOUR FAMILY INVOLVED

When I have to quiz my kids on a verse, I find I memorize it faster. Get them to practice saying the verse using hand motions for clues as you say it: “A person (points to self) without self-control (holds hands together) is like a city (points fingers together over head) with broken-down walls (interlock fingers and bend back).Proverbs 25:28

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I’ve created a 9-week study on the Fruit of the Spirit for familes that focuses on scripture memorization. You can check it out in my shop:

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Memorize bible verses

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Grab This Free Printable Spiritual Armor Cheat Sheet

Print this free Spiritual Armor cheat sheet to help you breakdown the teaching from Ephesians chapter six.

WHAT IS SPIRITUAL ARMOR?

The book of Ephesians is a letter written by the early church missionary, Paul, to a church in Ephesus. He was writing from prison to prepare them for what it takes to be a true follower of Christ. In the last chapter of this book, he goes over what we refer to as spiritual warfare and how to protect yourself.

Here’s what he says about spiritual warfare:

“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”

EPHESIANS 6:12

Yikes. Sounds a bit scary, right?

But he doesn’t leave us stranded there. He tells us that we have tools he has given us, and that we need to use these “weapons” in our battle against evil. These weapons make up our Spiritual Armor:

“Therefore, put on the full ARMOR OF GOD, so that when the day of evil comes, you have done everything, to stand.

Stand firm then, with the BELT OF TRUTH buckled around your waist, with the BREASTPLATE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the GOSPEL OF PEACE.

In addition to all this, take up the SHIELD OF FAITH, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the HELMET OF SALVATION and the SWORD OF THE SPIRIT which is the word of God.”

EPHESIANS 6:13-17

As I was looking through my Bible the other day, I noticed this silly drawing I did a few years ago when I came across this passage. I’ve always retained information better when I have a visual representation of the text, so I thought this little guy could use an update.

PRINT YOUR FREE SPIRITUAL ARMOR CHEAT SHEET

God gives us these “weapons” to arm ourselves with. We just need to remember that we have them so they can be used.

The Armor of God (aka Spiritual Armor) is laid out in Ephesians like this:

  • Belt of Truth = Leaning into what is true and what God promises
  • Breastplate of Righteousness = Our pursuit of Jesus’ character is a weapon
  • Feet fitted with readiness that comes from the Gospel of Peace = Perseverance and hope from the peace that Jesus brings
  • Shield of Faith = Trusting that God is faithful
  • Helmet of Salvation = Protection through Jesus’ gift of salvation
  • Sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God = Guidance and wisdom from the Bible

Paul then wraps up by reminding us that we also have prayer. He tells us:

“And PRAY in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.”

EPHESIANS 6:18

So I created this printable to remind you (and myself!) that we have everything we need in life because the Lord God has provided us with these tools already. Lean into his truth, righteousness, salvation, peace, faith and Spirit for guidance as you go throughout your day.

I think this updated version turned out pretty good and I can’t wait for you to print your copy!

Want to get this free printable plus over 100 other pages of freebies in my printable library? All you have to do is tell me where to send the email and I’ll share the link and secret password with you! Already subscribed? Access your freebies here.


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5 Styles of Note-Taking You Can Apply to Your Bible Study

Apply note-taking skills from your school years to your Bible, whether you’re a historian, artist, action taker, summarizer, or list maker.

*This post contains affiliate links. Please see my full disclosure for details.

bible note taking quote

TAKING NOTES IN YOUR BIBLE

Perhaps you are more of an organizer than an artist, more logical than imaginative. Maybe you enjoy finding patterns in repeated words and phrases rather than analyzing genealogies. Or maybe a character study or researching a specific theme appeals to you.

I happen to be a mixture of all these things, never being fully satisfied to stay put in one area. But no matter what draws you in, the important thing is that you find what lights you up and gets you into the Word on a regular basis.

SUPPLIES FOR BIBLE NOTE-TAKING

I always like to be able to find an excuse to organize something into a better, more productive system, and my Bible is no different. Get motivated with these supplies:

DO YOU HAVE TO BE AN ARTIST TO USE A BIBLE JOURNAL?

No! While I can appreciate the trend to write out one verse on a page of your Bible in the margin and illustrate it with watercolors and specialized pens, I feel like that turns my Bible into more of a sketchbook and not quite what I’m going for in my Bible study.

My approach to note-taking varies, and doodling is only one type of way to help me study the text.

Just as each person is gifted with their own learning styles, we can apply what worked for us in our school days to how we can more effectively study the Bible.

This is your Bible. Make it personalized. Flip through each and every page and work your way through the thing.

“For the Word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints an marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” – Hebrews 4:12

Don’t know where to start? I suggest Solomon’s wisdom in Proverbs or Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount. I mean, check out all the knowledge to be discovered from this intro!

bible note taking

WHAT KIND OF NOTE TAKER ARE YOU?

We all took notes in school, but over time we learned ways to do it in a way that actually helped us retain the information. Maybe you were a doodler, a paraphraser, a connection maker.

If you’re like me, you’re a mixture of a few, but see which one resonates with you the most and get started on that one.

1. THE HISTORIAN

You love learning about history and cultures. Maps and diagrams are your favorite tools.

bible note taking

2. THE SUMMARIZER

You like to simplify what you read in order to break it down into manageable parts. The no-bleed pen is your favorite tool.

bible note taking

bible note taking


3. THE LIST MAKER

You spend time organizing things and creating to-do lists. Books of the Bible tabs are your go-to tool.

bible note taking

4. THE ACTION TAKER

You want to know what to do and how to do it. You love topical resources.

bible note taking

5. THE ARTIST

You appreciate a good visual to help you make sense of text. Your favorite tools are colored pencils.

bible note taking

START YOUR BIBLE NOTE-TAKING TODAY!

  • Like to highlight? Look for repetition in Genesis 1 and Psalm 150.
  • Like to circle? Find descriptions of who God is in Psalm 18:1-3.
  • Enjoy color coding? Make your way through the book of Luke and highlight each heading that covers a parable (a story Jesus told) or a miracle.
  • Love a good quote or perhaps a motivational speech? Take notes on the wisdom of Solomon in Proverbs 10-22 and Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7).

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So a few years ago, I made this Old and New Testament Summary Printable, and now I’m working my way through each book of the Bible! To get the rest of the printables, check out my Timeline Bundles for the best deal:

You can also read more posts on spiritual growth here:

You’ve got this!

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