Bible Memorization Tips

According to educational psychologists, the best time for most people to study is early in the morning, between 7 and 9 a.m. After a night's sleep and a good breakfast, we are mentally alert and more likely to remember what we learn The best way to memorize is through repetition. There is no substitute for reviewing a verse repeatedly. However, specific memorization techniques can vary.

A Bible Memory Plan for Busy People

Bible Memory PlanThe following Bible memory strategy is based on a method by Dr. Andrew Davis in his booklet, An Approach to the Extended Memorization of Scripture. With this method, weekly Fighter Verses can be easily memorized and retained with an investment of about 10-15 minutes each week. If you have a few more minutes to spare, you can retain hundreds of previously memorized verses.

  • SUNDAY: Read this week's Fighter Verse with surrounding verses so you can see it in its context. Ask the Lord to help you commit this passage to memory, apply it to your life, and use it to bless others.
  • MONDAY: Read this week's Fighter Verse aloud 10 times with the reference. Cover the passage and try to say it aloud with its reference 10 more times, peeking if you have to. Say each memorized Fighter Verse from previous weeks one time aloud with references.
  • TUESDAY: Cover this week's Fighter Verse and try to say the verse aloud with its reference 10 more times, peeking if you have to. Say each memorized Fighter Verse from previous weeks one time aloud with references.
  • WEDNESDAYSATURDAY: Say this week's Fighter Verse and each memorized passage from previous weeks one time aloud with references.
  • REVIEW: Repeat memorized Fighter Verses at least once daily for at least 50 days. After that, once every week or two. Use the Fighter Verses App to help track which verses you have memorized and remind you when they need to be reviewed.

Pray daily asking the Lord to help you keep His Word in your heart, and use it to feed your soul and minister to others. Take advantage of passing idle moments during the day to call this week's Fighter Verse to mind.

Tips for Young Children

  • Say the reference. First, clearly pronounce the reference ("address" is easier for some young children to understand than "reference"). Then have the child repeat the reference.
  • Repeat the passage in sections. Say the passage in several bite-sized sections, repeating each section. Repeat the sections.
  • Repeat the reference again.
  • Repeat the passage several more times. Lengthen the sections each time.
  • Discuss the passage. After the passage is remembered (usually in 3-4 repetitions), it is good to dissect it. Discuss the meaning of unfamiliar words. Rephrase the passage and try to help the child discover how the passage applies to his life.

Tips for Older Children

  1. Bible Memory TipsREAD the passage.
  2. UNDERSTAND the passage.
    • Context: Look up the passage in its context in the Bible.
    • Paraphrase: Have the child say or write the passage in his own words.
    • Most Important Word: Have the child say what he thinks is the most important word and why he thinks so. Then you do the same.
    • Explain: Have the child read the passage silently and explain what it means. Then you do the same.
    • Apply: Have the child explain what he thinks a Christian should know, feel, and do in response to the verses. Discuss how this applies to him personally.
    • Illustrate: Have the child illustrate the verse by drawing a picture.
    • Pantomime: Have the child act out the passage or a situation in which it would apply.
  3. LEARN the passage. Knowing what the verse means and how to apply it prepares the child to memorize it. There are several ways to memorize a section of Scripture.
    • Read the verse through completely several times.
    • Write the verse in a notebook.
    • Repeat the verse a section at a time. Repeat a section several times. Add another section until the whole verse can be said. Always review before going to bed.
    • Sing the Fighter Verses Song for the verse.
    • Games may help:
      • Add a Word: The child says the first word in the passage, then you say the next, the child says the third, and so on.
      • Puzzle: Make a puzzle and put each word of the passage on a piece. Mix the pieces up and have the child put the puzzle together.
      • Erase a Word: Write the passage on a chalkboard or on paper and erase one word. Have the child repeat the passage. Keep erasing and repeating until all the words are gone and the child can say the passage from memory.
      • Mix Up Cards: Write each word on a separate card. Mix the cards up, put them face upon the table, and have the child put them in the correct order.
    • Put the verse into practice.
      • Ask the child to write the verse in a notebook and date it. Then have him list practical ways that he can put the verse into practice.
      • Each time he can put the verse into practice, have him write a short account of it and date it. This will show him the faithfulness of God in helping us to live according to His Word.
      • If the child misses the opportunity to use a passage, help him see how a memorized word could have been applied in that particular situation.
  4. IMPLEMENT the passage. Once the child knows what the passage means, he needs to learn to put it into practice.
  5. REWARD. Once your child can confidently say the passage and can explain its meaning, he can receive an agreed-upon reward. At first, the rewards should be small and easily attained in order to ensure success. Gradually the rewards should be harder to secure.

When helping children to memorize Scripture, avoid distracting or trivial activities such as seeing who can say the passage with the most marshmallows stuffed into his mouth or while hopping on one foot. These activities trivialize God’s Word. They also disrupt the learning process. It is likely that the child will remember the activity more than the verse. If the activity does not strengthen the connection children make with the passage, it probably should not be used. Also, these activities tend to take a lot of time and creativity to plan so that it is easy to lose momentum and to stop memorizing. Having a simple routine provides greater continuity and also forms memorizing habits.