On Scripture Memory

I was shocked – and a little uneasy – about what happened in church last Sunday. I had never witnessed anything exactly like this before.

Many of you know that we’ve moved and are now church hunting. This was church Number 5 that we’ve visited and the youth pastor was preaching. He started out in Psalm 1, which says this:

“How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, Nor stand in the path of sinners, Nor sit in the seat of scoffers! But his delight is in the law of the LORD, And in His law he meditates day and night. He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, Which yields its fruit in its season And its leaf does not wither; And in whatever he does, he prospers. The wicked are not so, But they are like chaff which the wind drives away.”

So, according to Psalm 1 the difference between the blessed righteous man and the wicked man is what? Did you see it in there?

“His delight is in the law of the Lord and in His law he meditates day and night.”

So then the youth pastor asked the audience to stand. He said to remain standing if you knew at least one verse by heart (maybe John 3:16?). Pretty much everyone stood.

How many of you know 5 verses by heart? More than half the audience sat down.

How many of you know 10 verses by heart? A whole bunch more people sat down.

How about 15 verses by heart? The recent seminary graduate next to me sat down.

More than 20 verses by heart? In an audience of 300 there are only 8 people still standing (and two of them are Ross and I, the first time visitors, ha!).

How about you? How many verses do you have stored up in your heart? When would you have needed to sit down?

One strange thing – I felt uneasy, almost embarrassed to still be standing… WHY? Why am I embarrassed to have spent time in the Word of God? Why is the standard so LOW? Why do we expect, even demand, so LITTLE of each other?!

But even more strange – why do so few people who go to church, claim to be Christians, and love God spend so LITTLE time meditating on His Word?!

Don’t listen to the lies – I can’t do it, I’m not smart enough, I don’t have time, it’s not important, etc. YOU CAN DO IT – You just have to choose to make it a priority in your life.

“For the Word of the Lord is not an idle word for you; indeed IT IS YOUR LIFE.” Deut 32:47

For a handout on the How and Whys of Scripture Memory see the Resources page.

And sign me up for that pastor’s youth group!!


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