John Wilson–Changing Forever How You Think: Recovering the Lost Art of Scripture Memorization

A compelling article on why those of us who are serious about following Jesus should practice the discipline of memorizing Scripture.

We live in a time when memorization is routinely scorned, an attitude summed up in the ubiquitous phrases “rote memory” and “rote learning.” Memorizing, we are told, discourages creativity, critical thinking, and conceptual understanding.

This scorn is odd. It doesn’t seem to jibe with our everyday experience. After all, training to be a doctor or a lawyer entails memorization—a lot of it. We don’t foolishly assume that the creativity of actors or musicians is crushed by the formidable feats of memory their art demands. And why is Peyton Manning such a dazzlingly good quarterback? In part because he spends countless hours in the film room, studying defenses, looking for patterns to memorize, so that—in the midst of the action, with a 290-pound lineman who runs like a cheetah and hits like a sledgehammer bearing down on him—he will make the optimal decision in a split second.

[later in the article]

Again and again, Kang emphasizes that memorizing Scripture is not an end in itself. “When we meditate deeply on the words of Scripture,” he writes, “we begin to bear fruit,” directed by the Spirit. “The more we commit the Word to memory, the richer our being becomes. The melodious concert of his Word will continually echo within us. Then we’ll encounter the conductor, our Lord Jesus, the Holy Spirit, who helps us remember the Scriptures, and the Father, who’ll receive glory through all of this.”

Read it all (and then get busy).