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Mike you asked about memorization material - aids. This is a long one condense if you need to.

1. To avoid sin.
"Thy word have I hid in mine heart,
that I might not sin against thee."
Psalm 119:11

2. Out of obedience.
"My son, keep my words, and lay up my commandments with thee.
Keep my commandments, and live;
and my law as the apple of thine eye.
Bind them upon thy fingers,
write them upon the table of thine heart."
Proverbs 7:1-3

3. In order to resist the devil
In Matthew 4 (which was in today's reading), Jesus was tempted three times by the devil, and each time He quoted scripture back saying "it is written...". In the end (v. 11) the devil left Him. We too can do that, if we lay up His words in our heart through memorization. John 14:26 says: "But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you."

4. To teach our children.
"And these words,
which I command thee this day,
shall be in thine heart:
And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children,
and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house,
and when thou walkest by the way,
and when thou liest down,
and when thou risest up.
Deuteronomy 6:6-7

5. To be prepared to share the Gospel
But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts:
and be ready always to give an answer to
every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you
with meekness and fear:
1 Peter 3:15
We are commanded to put on the armour of God which includes putting on shoes of preparation to share the Gospel. Ephesians 6:15 says "And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace." Memorization is one way to be prepared to share the Gospel.
That you may answer. Proverbs 22:20-21 says "Have not I written to thee excellent things in counsels and knowledge, That I might make thee know the certainty of the words of truth; that thou mightest answer the words of truth to them that send unto thee?"

6. To overcome our own will
Then I said, I will not make mention of him,
nor speak any more in his name.
But his word was in mine heart
as a burning fire shut up in my bones,
and I was weary with forbearing, and I could not stay.
Jeremiah 20:9
In this time of Jeremiah's life, God's word had been made a "reproach" and a "derision" daily. So Jeremiah had a bad attitude and decided that he was no longer going to speak out for God. But God's word was burning inside him, and he could not stay silent.

Here´s a good Bible Memorization Plan:
1. Choose a topic
2. Find a verse and write it on a card
3. Read the verse several times for meaning
4. Set the verse aside until tomorrow
5. Read the verse phrase by phrase, looking away from it as you begin to remember the words. Repeat several times
6. Do this for five days in a row, or until you can remember the whole verse and its "address" (reference) without a prompt
7. Use weekends to review memorized verses.

This is a part of a series of lessons on memorization.

Hope it helps!

Genesis 5
You don't need Bible Code to make interesting discoveries

I buckle sometimes at reading genealogies, but if you look at names from Adam to Noah and look at translations (meanings of names) - it gets kind of interesting.
Seth - Appointed
Enosh - Man
Kenan - To Acquire
Mahalalel - God's Praise
Jared - To descend
Enoch - Dedicated
Methusaleh - Man who was sent
Lamech - Mighty
Noah - Rest, Quiet, Peace

If you add the names Shem - dusky, Ham - black , Japheth - fair

We have:

Appointed Man to Acquire God's Praise to descend...Dedicated Man who was sent ..Mighty...Rest, Quiet, Peace.... dusky, black, fair (the whole world)

I guess you have to assume that the appointed man was to bring: Rest, Quiet, Peace to the whole world. However, I think this is a good enough description of Christ.

I apologize if this is "old hat" to some, but I found it kind of neat and wanted to share.
Kill or Corrupt

Satan has two strategies kill or corrupt.

Satan is not omniscient, and probably thought Abel was "the Redeemer". After working on Cain, and getting Abel dispatched - along came Seth. Realizing that God can always raise another, he shifted strategies to Corruption.

If he could corrupt the whole world, and make God mad enough to just give up and destroy it - he WINS.

Satan must have been dancing a jig. How close did God allow it to get. EIGHT PEOPLE.

I am not sure about the "sons of God" - I lean to "fallen angels" - but corruption took place, and it must have made Sodom look like Disney World.

The bottom line is God has a plan, and nothing Satan did surprises him or catches him off guard. Satan continues to kill and/or corrupt to this day, but in the end - he will lose.

My children and I find that we learn scriptures best through song. We sing them! If the scripture you want to remember has not been put to music, we make our own composition by using any well known tune.

This is a question about yesterday's reading from Genesis:
15 "And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel."
I understand that the woman's offspring is Jesus and he will conquer satan (crush his head), but to what in Scripture does striking his heel refer to?

Best resource I know for investing in a lifetime of scripture memory/meditation is the Navigators long standing course called The Topical Memory System. These are foundational passages that once committed to memory form the basis for understanding the structure of the scriptures, and makes God Word readily available on a moment's need.


Grace--I am not sure how literally we are to interpret "striking his heel" in Genesis 3:15. This excerpt from the Believer's Bible Commentary offers one pretty good interpretation:

"...this verse is known as the protevangelium, meaning "The First Gospel." It predicts the perpetual hostility between Satan and the woman (representing all mankind), and between Satan's seed (his agents) and her Seed (the Messiah). The woman's Seed would crush the Devil's head, a mortal wound spelling utter defeat. This wound was administered at Calvary when the Savior decisively triumphed over the Devil. Satan, in turn, would bruise the Messiah's heel. The heel wound here speaks of suffering and even of physical death, but not of ultimate defeat. So Christ suffered on the cross, and even died, but He arose from the dead, victorious over sin, hell, and Satan. The fact that He is called the woman's Seed may contain a suggestion of His virgin birth. Note the kindness of God in promising the Messiah before pronouncing sentence in the following verses." -William MacDonald, BBC

I love that last sentence about His kindness--how great is His mercy and love for us that He made a way for us to be reconciled to Him ( through Christ) BEFORE he meted out the consequences of sin. He is truly merciful!

On another note, I was thinking this morning about how Genesis leaves me wondering about many things. For me, it raises as many questions as it answers. In this regard, it reminds me a lot of the book of Revelation (which also leaves me wondering). Interesting that the Lord chose to frame His word with these two books that fill me with questions and wonder.

It's very human, I think, to want to understand every detail of where we came from and where we are going, and I find it interesting that the Lord chooses to give us some of those answers (in fact, the MOST important ones...like that HE made us (Genesis)...that He made a way to be reconciled to us despite our sin, and that He will return someday and finish what He started (Revelation).

But in between, there are many mysteries about the specifics that He has chosen to leave open and on the table....

I struggle with some of these issues when I try to teach my children how to defend our creationist beliefs against the particulars of evolutionary theory or exactly how the flood impacted animal life on earth...or that bizarre passage today about giants and sons of god/daughters of men reproducing (Genesis 6:4).

BUT, having allowed that, I like what Mike said in his Genesis commentary today about not getting so lost in parsing particulars that we lose sight of the purpose and point of the whole. Of course, I don't want to "reduce" the Bible or over simplify (I love that God welcomes thinking minds). But in my mind, at some point we have to allow that there are mysteries out in His word that He has chosen not to fully reveal.

I find this to be true in my practical life as well---I've walked through difficulties and circumstances that I didn't fully understand His purposes for at the time (and some I still don't).

And I suspect that "faith" comes into play through all this--that struggling with such issues strengthens our faith.

...just thinking (albeit muddily),

I am really enjoying the readings, commentaries and comments. I've learned so much already.

Genesis 5

To update my post from a few years ago (above)- I found a different meaning for the names at site below:

"There is some difference among authorities as to the meaning of these names, depending upon the root from which they are judged to be taken. But one authority gives a most interesting sequence of meanings:

The list begins with Seth, which means "Appointed."
Enosh, his son, means "Mortal;" and
His son, Kenan, means "Sorrow."
His son Mahalalel, means "The Blessed God."
He named his boy Jared which means "Came Down," and
His boy, Enoch, means "Teaching."
Methuselah, as we saw, means "His death shall bring;"
Lamech means "Strength," and
Noah, "Comfort."

Now put that all together:

God has Appointed that Mortal man shall Sorrow; but The Blessed God, Came Down, Teaching, that His Death Shall Bring, Strength and Comfort."


Genesis 6/7

You can do your own googling on sons of God, nephilim, bible. Make up your own mind. People argue about these passages in early Genesis 6 - but the point is: Times were extremely corrupt and evil.

8But Noah found favor in the eyes of the LORD.9 This is the account of Noah. Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked with God.

Paul in Romans says no one is righteous, not one. No Old Testament hero (character) is perfect - ALL are flawed just as we are flawed.

So how is Noah righteous? The Hebrew word for favor can also mean "grace" and is translated that way in KJV. Noah got something (righteousness) that he did not deserve. How? The same way we do: Noah believed and trusted in God. So way before Abraham we see that righteousness is imputed to one who has faith (belief/trust) in God.

Noah was not without sin - he later gets drunk and naked and I believe this was included to show Noah had flaws. However when you are righteous - you are seen as blameless in the eyes of the Lord. Your sins are covered.

Noah's walk with the Lord is figurative, and in the same manner as Adam and Eve walked with the Lord before the Fall. Noah stayed in step (although stumbling at times) with the Lord and followed His instruction (Word).
The Flood

I do not argue about the flood anymore. If God's Word says there was a flood - to me - there was a flood. Waters probably came from firmament, rain, and great springs bursting forth in ocean floors. Remember pre-flood mountains may not be as high as current mountains.

I will not argue but I will discuss flood with non-believers. At first I took the flood on faith - but being a former analyst I did some research. I was familiar with the arguments against the flood, but I found a site (below) with some interesting articles. If you disbelieve the flood put your beliefs on hold and noodle through the linked page of scientific and non-scientific articles. Then pray and meditate on what you knew, and what you read in those articles.

Ark is a Picture of Salvation and of Christ

One way in, all who are inside live, all outside perish, etc..


Psalm 3

4 To the LORD I cry aloud,
and he answers me from his holy hill.

David knows amd we should know - it is to the Lord that you petition. Not any man or woman (dead or living), not any self-help book or guru, not any ritual, etc. Your cry should be directed to God.

What are some of the things God does for us? Protection (shield), encourager, sustainer, and deliverer. David knows this, and so should we all.



Trinity may not be stated anywehre in Bible, but it is pictured in several places - here is one - Jesus' baptism.
Temptation of Christ

God not only allowed it - He led Christ to the temptation by the Holy Spirit. Why?????

Jesus did not come to show us how God behaves. It is true that he came to reveal the Father in his character, but in his activity he came to reveal man as God intended man to be. In everything he did we see man acting as God intended man to act, from the very beginning before the Fall.

Jesus shows us we are not tempted because we are sinners (He was not), but because we are human.

Jesus shows us it is not about location or circumstances - that is not an excuse. First temptation was in a perfect garden, the second in the wilderness. Temptation does not come from without but from within. Remember Satan talked to Eve and then left. She ruminated for a while and then sinned.

Satan attacks Jesus on three levels - physical, soul, and spirit.

"IF" is an interesting word here, because it does not cast doubt. Greek "if" when followed by present indicative connotes 'assuming it to be true'. So think of it this way:

'Since you are the Son of God....

Turn stones into bread. You can't trust God to take care of your physical needs - you are hungry - God is too busy at the moment to feed you.

Response was from Deuteronomy. Deuteronomy was given to Israel in the wilderness as it was preparing to enter the land of promise. In responding to the devil from Deuteronomy, Jesus obeys God in a place that Israel did not. Israel failed, not only in the wilderness but in the land of promise. It forgot Deuteronomy. Jesus does not.

2nd temptation was on soul level. OK, you trust God - let's put your trust in His Word to the test. Jump.....show me and all the people below the veracity of God's Word.

Again Jesus responded from Deuteronomy. "You shall not put the Lord your God to the test, (as you tested him at Massah)." What happened at Massah? The people tested the Lord there by demanding that he give them water, demanding proof that the Lord was with them (Exodus 17:1-3, 7). The New Testament word translated here "tempt" can also be translated "test." Jesus refuses to force God to prove himself. Jesus thus refuses to prove himself to himself.

3rd temptation is on the spiritual level of the core of man - his potential for pride. Fine Jesus you trust God and His Word, but what about His plan. You don't have to do this - forget God's plan, games, and pain. You can have it all. You can decide right here and now to do it your way....just worship me.

[Note: Jesus did not dispute Satan's authority to offer the world. So as God's Word said Satan is the "prince of this world".]

Jesus answered again from Deuteronomy. His specific use of Deuteronomy 6:13 is no accident. Israel was called to worship the Lord, but its ultimate failure was that it worshiped other gods. Its idolatry was its failure. The devil is the god behind all the false gods (1 Corinthians 10:19-20). Jesus again is walking in the footsteps of Israel, and he is tempted to fail where Israel failed.

So Jesus faced temptation as we all must, no matter the place or time, and Jesus showed us by relying on God's Word how to resist temptation. Jesus succeeded where Adam and Israel in its wilderness failed.

when reading psalms 3... this song popped into my head...

it's by byron cage- "thou art a shield- psalms 3"

be encouraged as much as i am everytime i hear this

have a great evening....

nic jay

oops... here's the link... copy and paste into your browser...

click here to listen "Thou art a Shield- Byron Cage"


Today's memory verse from Matthew 4:4 certainly stands out to me. The word of God is so important and we do need to live on it every day.

Mike, I'll join you in commiting to memorizing Scripture on a regular basis.

The verses that I have memorised which I have found useful in my life include Romans 8:28, Philippians 4:4, 6-7 & Matthew 28:16-20. Like you, I also find Proverbs 3:5-6 very useful!

1. Are you memorizing Scripture on a regular basis? I AM CERTAINLY TRYING
2. Are you bringing Scripture to mind when faced with temptation or sadness or whatever ails you? YES I AM
3. I would love to know which verses you have found useful in your life? PROVERBS 3:5-6 WAS THE FIRST VERSES I MEMORIZED WHEN I ACCEPTED CHRIST INTO MY LIFE SIX YEARS AGO
4. Do you have advice on how to best go about memorizing Scripture? READ AND LISTEN TO GOD'S WORD DAILY
5. Will you join me in my plan to memorize more Scripture verses in 2009? I WILL. THAT IS MY GOAL
6Also, what verses or insights stand out to you in today's readings? Matthew 4:4

1. Are you memorizing Scripture on a regular basis? I'm just sooo bad at memorizing anything. I've had the same verse on my wall for 4 months now and I still can't remember it. Sigh.

2. Are you bringing Scripture to mind when faced with temptation or sadness or whatever ails you? yes, usually in the form of songs or a verse learnt

3. I would love to know which verses you have found useful in your life?

1 Cor 10:13
I learnt it in the NIV version:

No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.

But The Message version is a fresh reminder:

No test or temptation that comes your way is beyond the course of what others have had to face. All you need to remember is that God will never let you down; he'll never let you be pushed past your limit; he'll always be there to help you come through it.

4. Do you have advice on how to best go about memorizing Scripture? No idea except that it will take discipline and determination.

5. Will you join me in my plan to memorize more Scripture verses in 2009?
I can't promise. I'm taking baby steps. Having a regular QT and daily Bible reading are my goals for this year. Don't want to set an overly ambitious set of goals.

6Also, what verses or insights stand out to you in today's readings?
a familiar favourite... but I'm reading it in a whole new way... "steady stream" what a apt description and one that I have to be ever aware of. God doesn't just speak once or twice but all the time.
Matt 4:4
Jesus answered by quoting Deuteronomy: "It takes more than bread to stay alive. It takes a steady stream of words from God's mouth."

Mike you asked about bible verses that we have memorized that help us out. Well I have never been a great memorizer but the holy spirit does bring some to rememberance. But I wanted to share two verses that have helped me in difficult times. The first was in our readings today. Psalm 3:5 "I laid me down and slept; I awaked; for the LORD sustained me." I always like to remember this verse when I am afraid. Also just before bed because I think about the Lord as I lay down to sleep and it really helps me to sleep in peace. I feel his presence is right there with me.

Also 1 Corinthians 10:13

13There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.

I love to remember this verse when I am tempted and to remember that even our Lord was tempted but sinned not. This is definitely a scripture to memorize and tell the devil when he is tempting you. It has helped with me.

Mike when you say we need the scripture to overcome temptations I am in wholehearted agreement. I will share a little personal story. I have not been reading my bible or praying in quite some time now. Sometimes I slip out of these good godly habits. Well as a person doesn't do these things reading and praying temptations come more often and are more likely to be succumbed to. I am just saying this as an encouragement to everyone to keep reading and keep praying it really does make a difference.

In Christ,


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