All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. 2 Timothy 3:16-17
This verse is true whether I read it in my hard copy Bible or my digital Bible. All Scripture is useful. We need to teach our kids this truth and pray that they come to love the Bible – because it is the Word of God to us.
We live in an age of unprecedented access to the Bible. I have at least 10 copies of the Bible in my house. The Bible is accessible on the internet, and on our phones. With the Bible being so easy to access, it is still important to memorize Scripture?
I believe there is huge value in memorizing Scripture and encouraging our kids to memorize Scripture. There are a number of reasons why Scripture memory is important, but I want to focus on one:
Scripture memory helps us to avoid sin; to resist temptation.
The Psalmist writes that he memorizes Scripture in order to avoid sin.
I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. Psalm 119:11
Even Jesus, when being tempted in the wilderness, quoted Scripture.
Children will face temptation. Our job as children’s ministry volunteers (and as parents) is to teach our children the value of memorizing Scripture in order resist temptation.
Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Ephesians 6:13
One piece of the full armor of God that is used to help us stand our ground is the Sword of the Spirit – the Word of God.
But do our kids need to memorize Scripture in order to use it to resist temptation? Maybe not, but in that moment when temptation comes, are they going to ask for a time out so that they can get out their phones and look up something that will help? Having the Bible so accessible is great, but it will not help in that situation if they don’t know what to look up.
However, if our children have memorized a verse that teaches them what to do when tempted, they will always have that knowledge.
“You are tempted in the same way all other human beings are. God is faithful. He will not let you be tempted any more than you can take. But when you are tempted, God will give you a way out so that you can stand up under it.” (1 Corinthians 10:13),
In that moment when temptation comes, instead of asking for a time-out, our kids will remember that God has promised them a way out and ask Him to show it to them.
Scripture memory is a great tool we can give to our kids. We need to encourage them to memorize Scripture and then tell them why it is important. We need to show them the difference between having the Bible accessible and having it “hidden in our hearts.” Temptation will come – let’s give our kids the tools they need to stand their ground.