Scripture memory is essential in growing and developing in one’s walk with God. It allows us to call to mind pieces of wisdom from the word of God in everyday life, and it helps us hold ourselves accountable. As I have tried to commit more and more verses to memory over time, here are ten that I find to be pertinent and applicable on a daily basis:
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-6
This verse has been an anthem in my own life – quite literally. My pastor taught my Sunday School class a small song with hand motions to this verse when we were young; it has been a staple in my life ever since. We spend far too much time worrying, but our God calls us to a different mindset. Instead, we are to trust in, rely on, and acknowledge Him to provide. Cede control, and He will make your paths straight.
“Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand.” Proverbs 19:21
I am a planner; I like to know what I am doing next and when. However, unfortunately for me, this type of control is not really within my capabilities. We serve a God who orchestrates the universe in ways that far surpass our understanding. People can try to plan and establish their own ways, but He is infinitely more powerful and knowledgeable than anyone on earth. His plan will always prevail, and we can trust that it is good.
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7
Philippians 4:6-7 is cited quite often to bring comfort and peace. It is interesting because the author, Paul, does not tell us “when you are anxious…” but instead commands us not to be anxious. So we are to prevent against anxiety itself by making prayer and thanksgiving a consistent practice of ours. That allows us to experience God’s transcendent peace. While eliminating anxiety from our lives really does not seem possible, we can certainly guard our hearts and minds in the Lord from anxiety by taking these measures. We will never be free from anxiety on earth, but we can protect against it.
“He has told you, O man, what is good;
and what does the Lord require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
and to walk humbly with your God?” Micah 6:8
I absolutely love Micah 6:8. The commands are seemingly simple, but they require intentional effort on our part to carry out what God tells us. These are not mere suggestions, but requirements. If we are to follow and serve the Lord of all, we need to pursue these things: justice, love (for how can we “love kindness” if we do not know love itself?), kindness, and humility. These four behaviors are good in the sight of the Lord, and they are necessary for Christian living.
“Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.” 1 Timothy 4:12
One of my goals this year was to memorize at least two chapters of the Bible. 1 Timothy 4 made the top of the list, namely because of verse 12. Youth is generalized as a time for recklessness and secularity. However, Paul states in his letter to a young Timothy that his age should not be the defining characteristic in his behavior. Rather, Paul implores him to not let anyone look down on him because of his age. His actions are to tell a different story. They are to prove wrong the preconceived notions about youth. Timothy, regardless of age, is told to set an example for others with his actions. While many of us are still yet young, we should not give others a reason to despise us for our age. We can live in a way that is pleasing to God and that encourages people to do the same.
“Charm is deceptive and beauty is fleeting, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.” Proverbs 31:30
Proverbs 31:10-31 describes a woman of noble character. This woman is not characterized by her appearance, but by her lifestyle. Verse 30 strikes me every time I read it; the appearances we build will eventually crumble, but the fear of the Lord will not. Our God is everlasting, and praise be to the woman who invests her life in that which will not end. Ladies, the greatest piece of wisdom for us lies in this Biblical sentiment. Build your life on that which never ends, in that which works for the eternal glory of our Lord Jesus Christ rather than the fleeting pleasures of this world.
“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through Him.” John 3:16-17
John chapter 3 is an important section of the Bible when sharing the gospel with others. The gospel of Jesus Christ can be more or less summed up in these two verses. I highly suggest memorizing it in order to be prepared to share the gospel with others. Who is Jesus? God’s only Son. Why did He come? To save the world, not condemn it, because of His love for us. How did He do it? Those who believe in Him will have everlasting life because of God giving Jesus in sacrificial love for us.
If you have a tough time speaking about Jesus with others, these are the verses to memorize and share because they break the gospel down simply and effectively.
“May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Galatians 6:14
Christians recognize that we draw our strength, purpose, abilities, and knowledge from the Savior Jesus Christ. This eliminates any and all reasons we may have to take pride in our achievements. Anything we have is from He who redeemed and restored us to a right-standing relationship with Himself. This verse is a great one to memorize – it checks our pride and keeps the cross of Christ in constant perspective.
“But in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect…” 1 Peter 3:15
Christ Jesus is holy and set apart, meaning we are to regard Him as such. He is to be first in our lives, which is quite contrary to the rest of the world’s priorities. If God is first in our lives, we are sure to be questioned about the hope we have in Him because we will behave differently than the rest of the world. This verse instructs us to be prepared at all times to share Christ with others. Further, in light of the fact that we are representing the Heavenly Lord, we need to do it in a way that reflects positively on Him. With full gentleness and respect for others, we are to share the hope of Jesus Christ with those around us.
“…Present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” Romans 12:1-2