(Special note: I originally published this post some time ago, but it was lost from the site when we had a website crash. I was having an email conversation with a young man from Kenya who was asking about Bible memorization so I thought it would be valuable to bring it back. I do not use all of these techniques currently everyday because I am experimenting with some other things but all the points here are valid today if you are getting started. Now on to the post- Kevin 10/17/2016)
This post will definitely be an embracing of the nerd within. Memorization is a hobby of mine. One thing that helps my prayer time is when I begin to pray a Bible passage that I have memorized. It can take it to a whole new level. Psalms 119 is a great reminder of how important God’s word is to our lives. God’s word is like food to our spirit!
Because of this I am always looking for new ways to improve my Bible memory. If you have things that work for you please include them in the comments below. Here are three ways that I have used in Bible memory that help me. WARNING: The nerd factor on this is high so enter at your own risk. Some of your coolness may fall off in the reading.
Use A Number System to Memorize the Reference
One of the best audio books I have listened to on the subject of memory is called Quantum Memory Power: Learn to Improve Your Memory with the World Memory Champion by Dominic O’Brien. Anyone interested in the subject of memory would be well served by checking out this resource.
In this program he talks about turning numbers into pictures. This is a huge help in learning the reference of a Bible verse. Although he goes into detail about this in the program the basic idea is to pick people to represent each of the numbers from 1-99. The majority that I use are famous people. Then pick an action for each of those people. For example I use Albert Einstein for the number 15. His action is always to be writing on the chalk board. This may take a bit to learn up front, but the payoff is huge later. It will also come in handy when you are trying to learn your pin number at the bank as well.
Once you have the numbers and actions for 1-99 it is easy to remember memorize and reference. Here is an example. Say you are trying to memorize a passage found at Chapter 33 verse 23. For me 33 is Charlie Chaplin. 23 is Michael Jordan. I use the person for the chapter and they are using the action of the verse. So in this case Charlie Chaplin is shooting basketballs. If it was chapter 23 verse 33 I would picture Michael Jordan swirling a cane. Both are much easier to remember than a random number.
With a little work this will become easy and almost automatic. This may affect your cool factor when you memorize passages with ease and easily memorize street numbers.
Use the Remember Me App
The Remember Me app is easily one of my favorite apps. It is a simple to use and makes memorizing scripture a little like a video game. I am including a video to briefly explain how I use it.
Use the Journey method to memorize passages of scripture.
After listening to Quantum Memory Power I wrote to Dominic O’Brien to see what advice he would recommend for memorizing scripture. He emailed that the journey method would be what he would suggest. Basically the idea is people remember better when they have a location to put what they are looking to remember.
So just for example say we are trying to memorize a chapter that has 10 verses. You can use your house for this example. Maybe a bathroom will be verse 1. Your bedroom next to it will be verse 2. You then pick 8 other places in a row in your house to attach each of the verses of your chapter. After the journey is set you go back and attach the content of the verses to the places of your house.
All you need to do to memorize another chapter is find another location to make a journey. It can be a trip to work or the town you grew up. Again, like the number system, it will take a little practice to start with but one you get used to it you will find memorizing longer passages a lot of fun.
Maybe pick one of these methods to start and give it a try. Like I said up front memorization is a hobby of mine and I have a lot of fun with it. Please let me know in the comments below any other methods you have used to memorize the Bible.