Value of Scripture Memory Verses?

Dear Reader,

I would like some input on the value of memorizing Scripture verses. This is not something I was raised with. In college I was occasionally in groups where this was required, and I did my mandatory verses. I can’t say I remember very much of them. What I do know of Bible verses, I think comes more from having read and studied it over the years. My recollections are always along the lines of: “Doesn’t it say somewhere . . . Where is that?” And sometimes I do at least have an idea of where the verse is. So I guess my question is, have you memorized Scripture for the sake of memorization and found it beneficial to your life? I have to say no one else in the adult studies I am in seems to be much better at remembering verses than I am. And some of them I know grew up in Christian homes and I presume did some memory work. I know I don’t have a great memory so maybe that is part of my problem. It just seems that if I have my kids to verses they will remember them when we are doing them, but will they remember them long-term? Will they be able to pull them up when they really need them? Or will it be like anything else one crams for an exam and not stick long term?

I guess I am particularly frustrated this week because my kids have started Sunday school again and my almost 7 year old is struggling with verses to memorize. If he doesn’t do them, he doesn’t get a prize like all the other kids. But he is not great at auditory learning and really struggles to learn the verses. Last week’s was long and he did not understand it at all. It was from the 10 commandments and contained phrases like “visiting the iniquity.” It wasn’t explained to him. And of course this didn’t aid in his learning it.

Just for context, we do do family worship most every day which includes Bible reading and we study theology as part of our homeschool. I am just wondering about the real value of adding Scripture memory to our program.

Any input is appreciated,



6 responses to this post.

  1. Hi Nebby!

    Your kids WILL benefit from memorizing scripture. We’re on the homeschooling road too (South Africa) and I just realized the value of scripture memorization long after we started to memorize famous verses from the Bible.

    We now have moved on to less famous verses, and the kids are STILL looking forward to our ‘game-time’ as they call it. Every morning after Bible story time, we’ll memorize one ore two lines extra and revise the rest. No pressure, just fun.

    Try a different translation, if you may – when words are ‘too big’ or seems to daunt the whole excercise.

    You may like to read what I’ve written here:

    Thanks for sharing! Try to keep it ‘fun’ and learn with them – my kids just want to beat me and sometimes memorize their parts ahead, just to ‘show mom’ how clever they are.



    • Thanks, Elaine. I read your post and it is helpful. I guess I need to try and do more memory work in our homeschool. I guess my real problem is my son’s Sunday school and how it is beign done–i.e. long verses he doesn’t understand and which aren’t explained to him and they have to be memorized in a set amount of time.


  2. Posted by erica on October 22, 2010 at 9:45 pm

    i’ve found that while i don’t always remember verbatim the Scripture i memorize (or have memorized as a child or young person) knowing key words in the verses and whereabouts to find them (like knowing to look in 1st Corinthians as opposed to Romans) helps me locate the needed verse. knowing how to search the Word and then appropriately wield it is important, too.


  3. […] We don’t do memory verses. I blogged a little about that here. I question the value of just learning disconnected verses. We have tried other ways, like […]


  4. […] I understand the first sentence of this. It is about not coming between the children and the text too much (for more on how a Charlotte Mason approach to Sunday school would look see here). I wonder about the second. Is she just referring to the practice of memory verses? Is there something more specific or  a certain approach from her day that she is condemning? I personally have never been a huge fan of memory verses. Growing up Catholic, we did nothing like that. My first exposure to them was as a young adult when we had verses we were supposed to memorize and recite for our Sunday school class. But it was like any other memorization for a test, I learned them but they were in short-term memory and did not stick with me. My children have at times had to do them in their Sunday school classes and I have also questioned the value of that. […]


  5. […] drill in this slot. I am not sure how we will do Bible memory. It is something I have had a lot of qualms about in the […]


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