Fighting with the sword of the Spirit

Scripture is part of our defense against, and attack on, evil. When describing the armor of God, Ephesians 6:17 says, “...and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”

During a study of Hebrews, I was challenged recently to choose a passage of Scripture and memorize it. I chose Hebrews 10:19–25. 

“Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the holy places by the blood of Jesus, by the new and living way that He opened for us through the curtain, that is, through His flesh, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed in pure water. Let us hold fast the confession of our faith without wavering, for He who promised is faithful. And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another all the more, and as you see the Day drawing near.”

To help me along, I wrote the verse on several cards and kept them around me: one stays in my car, one stays at my desk at work, one stays in my Bible and another sits on my coffee table at home. This keeps it in the front of my mind no matter where I’m at, and gives me the opportunity to practice the Scripture anytime.

Memorizing Scripture isn’t something I’ve done consistently since I was a child in Awana (IYKYK). I know Scripture memorization is important and I want to be more intentional about it.

Scripture memorization is important for several reasons. 

  • Scripture is part of our defense against, and attack on, evil. When describing the armor of God, Ephesians 6:17 says, “…and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.” Earlier in that chapter, the author says, “Put on the full armor of God, that you may be able to fight against the schemes of the devil” (v. 11). Committing God’s word to memory will help us stand strong when facing temptation, discouragement and fear. You may not know right now how God will use the verses you memorize to strengthen you, but I guarantee you that the day will come when you are thankful for the Scripture you have stored up in your heart. 
  • God’s word encourages it. These are just a sampling of the verses that impress upon us to meditate on and commit Scripture to memory — permanent residence in our hearts.
    • “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it” (Joshua 1:8a).
    • “I have stored up Your Word in my heart, that I might not sin against You” (Psalm 199:11).
    • “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom …” (Colossians 3:16a)
  • It’s good for overall brain health. According to an article, by Paul Nowak with IrisReading.com, “Memorization serves as a workout for the brain, training it to be quick, agile, and focused. The brain is like a muscle that requires exercise for optimal functioning. Besides being a mental workout, memorization also teaches the mind to remain focused when dealing with unpleasant tasks.”

I don’t want my Scripture memorization to stop after the passage from Hebrews. I want to keep finding and committing Bible verses to memory. I encourage you to do the same. 

I’m going to memorize the verses that the kid’s I teach on Wednesday nights are memorizing. You may not have an easy selection process like I do, so you can memorize some of your favorite verses or ask friends and family for suggestions. Or look online — you can find a list of verses to memorize and just work your way down the list. 

Use whatever system and speed works best for you, but I encourage you to always be storing up God’s word in your heart. 

Jessica Ingram

Jessica Ingram is a regular contributor to The Scroll. She also is the event coordinator for The Alabama Baptist/TAB Media. She graduated from Mississippi State University in 2017 and is a member of The Church at Brook Hills, Birmingham.

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