We seem to be fully embedded in the information age. Mass produced technology and the internet have created an insatiable information attraction, many times leading to information distraction, and on to full-scale information overload. Whether part of your business, your hobby, or your faith, information sources abound and we are all making choices about what information we consume each day. In addition, choices are made all day about what information is important enough to us to remember. From a very practical standpoint, you probably have these items memorized: ATM/Debit Card PIN code, Phone passcode, Home Phone and Spouse Phone Number (or at least where they are on your speed dial), e-mail account password, Amazon/eBay/Netflix account password, Home Address, Social Security Number, Work Address, Work Phone Number, etc. Perhaps you are already getting my point. If you are reading this, you have the ability to remember many pieces of information, especially information important for daily use. Daily use helps with this memorization. Should not the reality of the kingdom of God be manifested in us moment by moment. Our affluent, seemingly self-sufficient lifestyles are blinded to the value and benefit of daily poring over and thus memorizing God’s Word. Just a brief review of some verses should lead to a conviction to change:
“It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.” Matthew 4:4
All Scripture is God breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness. 2 Tim 3:16
Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth. Meditate on it day and night so that you may be careful to do everything written it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. Joshua 1:8
So then faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God. Romans 10:17
The precepts of the Lord are right giving joy to the heart. The commands of the Lord are radiant, giving light to the eyes. Psalms 19:8
I will walk about in freedom, for I have sought out your precepts. Psalms 119:45
But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect. 1 Peter 3:15
The born-again Christian should live life drastically different from “the world”. Where you place the Word of God (the Bible) in your information/memory priority list needs to be considered a key element of this difference. There is no information that should be of higher priority to the Christian than God’s Word. So repent and believe that Christ has died for sin, and that the Holy Spirit delivers power from on high to you to prioritize God’s Word so that nations can be reached (Acts 1:8).
Jesus, during his temptation in the desert (Luke 4), Peter at Pentecost, and Paul before King Agrippa showed that the Word of God through Moses and the prophets was the most important information tool in their toolbox. Let us follow the example of Jesus, our Savior and King, and his faith-filled disciples.
Here are some tips to jumpstart your renewed passion for God’s Word followed by some downloadable tools specifically aimed at Evangelism.
• Any verse that helped lead you to Christ
• Verses of special significance or encouragement to you
• Topically oriented verses such as from the Navigators® Topical Memory System or a Bible Promises book or resource (e.g. Promises “in Christ”)
• Larger section of Scripture (e.g. individual Psalm, Ten Commandments, 1 Corinthians 13)
Write them down
• Index cards or blank business cards or Powerpoint slides
• Write Citation before AND after the verse
• Choose Bible version you will be most comfortable with speaking with conviction
• Use different colors, underlines, or markings to help identify natural memory-helps in the verses
• Carve out time in your “busy” life
• Set standing phone alarms/reminders because we are lazy, forgetful, people that don’t do what we want to do (Romans 12)
• Practice the verse by writing, speaking in your mind, AND speaking out loud
• Strive for memorizing verse exactly as written
• Eliminate some affluent activities from your life in favor of God’s Word (Media, Sports Events, Hobbies, Dining Out)
• Have a friend, spouse, or child assist you in practicing
• Look for every opportunity to share a memorized verse (e.g. during prayer, testimony, family phone call, etc)
No Evangelist’s toolbelt is complete without a memorized gospel presentation grounded in the Word of God. I was once taught a variation on the Navigators Bridge™ Illustration that grouped the verses into a little jingle; “S-D-S-D, All Chapter 3”. The table below shows the 4 verses that encompass this tool. The files below provide the illustration and verses in a variety of formats that I pray God may use to help you “be prepared to give an answer…for the hope that you have.”
|For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God
|For God so loved the world, that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
|1 Peter 3:18
|For Christ died for sins, once for all, the righteous for the unrighteousness, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body, but made alive by the Spirit.
|"Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me."