Help your kids hide God’s word in their hearts with these 25 Bible Verses for Kids to Memorize and 10 helpful hints for Scripture memory!
I’m always amazed at how quickly kids can memorize things. Seriously, their brains are like little sponges, aren’t they? It’s the reason they pick up other languages more quickly than adults. They just soak information right up!
If you think about it, childhood is the best possible time to have your kids memorize Scripture for 3 very good reasons.
3 Reasons for Kids to Memorize Scripture
- First, it’s usually easy for them to do. Just repeat the verse several times with them, and they’ll say it right back to you. As they get older, it will get more difficult, or they’ll be less willing to do it. (Any parents of preteens or teenagers out there? You know what I mean.)
- Second, Scripture is the best tool for teaching our kids how to live. It’s the source of all the wisdom they’ll ever need. Is your child saying unkind things? There’s a verse for that. Dishonesty? There’s a verse for that, too. Quite a few in fact. If we hold God’s word up as the standard in our homes, our children will recognize when their behavior contradicts God’s commands. They’ll be able to say “I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.” (Psalm 119:11)
- Finally, what we teach them today, stays with them tomorrow. After all, Proverbs 22:6 says, “Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.”
10 Tips for Helping Kids Memorize Bible Verses
So, if we know the importance of having our kids memorize Scripture, how do we help them do it?
- Focus on one verse a week, reading it together at each meal. After the first day or two, let the kids take turns reading or reciting the verse at each meal.
- Have them write the verse once a day. (It’s a great way to practice penmanship, too!)
- Look for songs that include the verses you’re memorizing. There are so many! We have loved this collection by Steve Green. The songs are fun for kids and full of Scripture!
- Print the verse and put it in a prominent place so kids see it on a regular basis. You might put it on a post-it note and stick in on the bathroom mirror or print it out and frame it so that they see it every time they come in the kitchen.
- Speaking of printing it out – find a printable coloring sheet and let your kids meditate on the verse while they color it. There are so many beautiful printables available online. Chances are the verse you’re memorizing is one of them!
- Play games using the verse. You could print the verse then cut it up to make a puzzle. Make a word search or crossword puzzle using the verse. A crossword puzzle would be a great way for older kids to delve into what the verse means word for word.
- Road trip? Take turns reciting the verse as you ride. School runs are a perfect opportunity for reviewing your memory verses.
- Be sure to have your kids mark the verse in their own Bibles so they know how and where to find it.
- Think of tips and tricks for each verse. For instance, I still say Psalm 56:3 from the King James Version because I memorized it as a child. The reason it stuck with me (including the reference, which I usually struggle to remember) is because “When I am afraid, I will trust in thee.” Psalm 56:3 rhymes. Say it that way and you’ll never forget the Scripture reference again! I also always remember the order of the books Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians because GEPH or “Go Eat PopCorn.” (I’ve always loved popcorn!)
- Finally, make it fun! You could have a family competition each week, sort of like a spelling bee, or have a family challenge to memorize a certain number of verses…don’t forget the prizes! If your kids are just starting to read, a new “real” Bible would be a great way to celebrate the end of the challenge. My son received an Adventure Bible for Christmas, and he loves it. Our oldest received this wonderful journaling Bible (she LOVES to draw and keep notebooks) and has loved it so far. You could also have a family prize like a fun outing for completing the Memory Verse Challenge as a family. So many options for incentives!
You know why your kids need to memorize Bible Verses, you know how to help them do it, but which verses should you start with? Obviously, that’s entirely up to you, but if you’re looking for a place to start, consider the following 25 Bible verses for kids to memorize.
Bible Verses to Help Kids Deal with Fear
Psalm 56:3 is short and to the point, and it helps kids learn how to deal with fear, which is helpful if they’re having nightmares or are afraid of the dark. As I said before, I memorized the King James Version, which is above, and is easy to remember because of the rhyming, but you might have to explain that “Thee” means “you.” Here’s a more modern version:
“When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.” Psalm 56:3
Another verse that is helpful when kids are afraid is Psalm 4:8, which says, “I will lie down and sleep in peace, for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.”
Kindness Bible Verses for Kids
In a world full of bullies, teaching our kids to be kind is extremely important. They need to learn how powerful their words and actions are so one of the verses we’ve been talking about a lot lately is Ephesians 4:29. It says, “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.”
Going through and explaining the meaning of words your kids don’t know not only helps them understand the verse and how it applies to their lives, it’s a great vocabulary lesson! With this verse, we discussed what it means for something to be “wholesome” and beneficial.
When it comes to encouraging kindness, there’s no better verse than the Golden Rule, is there? It’s also a really easy one for kids to memorize.
“Do to others as you would have them do to you.” Luke 6:3125 Bible Verses for Kids to Memorize & 10 tips to help them do it!Click To Tweet
Bible Verses for Kids about God’s Love
Of all the things I want my kids to know, the love of God is one of the most important. I want them to know it in a way that influences how they live and how they feel about themselves. Memorizing Scripture is one way we can all have that knowledge deep within us.
It may be an obvious choice, but kids often start by learning John 3:16. Don’t neglect it just because it’s one they commonly hear. They need to know that God loves them, but not just them. They need to know that he loves the world, all the people of it.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16
To help them understand the depth of that love, encourage them to memorize Romans 5:8, which says, “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
1 John 3:16 takes that love and goes further, explaining how we should live in light of such great love.
“This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters.”
And if they ever need to know that God’s love never changes, share with them Isaiah 54:10: “‘Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,’ says the Lord, who has compassion on you.”
Bible Verses for Kids about Life in Christ
We can teach kids about the Bible all day, but if we don’t teach them how it applies to their lives, we won’t accomplish much. That’s why I think it’s very important to help them memorize verses about what life in Christ should be like. It’s part of discipling them, isn’t it? The Holy Spirit will do the work in their hearts, but we can help lay a foundation of faith in their formative years.
Here are a few of my favorite verses for kids to know:
- Galatians 5:22 – “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.” (Teach them the song. They’ll love to sing it!)
- Philippians 4:13 – “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.”
- 1 John 1:9 – “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
- Deuteronomy 6:5 – “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.”
- Philippians 2:14 – “Do everything without grumbling or arguing.”
- Colossians 3:17 – “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”
- Philippians 4:4 – “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again, ‘Rejoice!'”
- Ephesians 2:10 – “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”
- Philippians 1:6 – “Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”
- Philippians 4:19 – “And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.”
- John 8:12 – “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness.”
- John 15:8 – “This is to my father’s glory that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.”
- Matthew 5:16 – “In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”
- Matthew 6:33 – “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you as well.”
- John 8:31-32 – “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
- 2 Peter 1:3 – “His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.”
- 1 John 4:4 – “You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.”
I would love to know which verses you would add to this list or how you encourage kids (or adults!) to memorize Scripture! Please leave a comment and share your ideas. Also, be sure to add a link or two for this week’s Encouraging Word Wednesday party. I’d love to have you join us! (There seems to be a problem with the thumbnails….I’m working on it!)Join us for the Encouraging Word Wednesday Link Party! Click To Tweet
Michele Morin says
For longer than I want to admit, I’ve led Sunday School opening for the kids (and grown ups) of my church, and have decided to use that time for Scripture memory. One of the things I tell the group is that the kids have a huge advantage over the adults because their brains are just stickier!
Ha! They are absolutely “stickier”! I love that!
Kristina Gorr says
Love this! We are doing one scripture per month – partly because it gives him a ton of time to solidify it and partly because it’s easier for me to only do one a month. My son is only 3.5 years old, so it’s perfect for him. He has been memorizing 1 Corinthian 13:13 – it’s so fun when he gets it and his face lights up with pride!
Donna Reidland says
Great verses and tips. It’s so important to help our children learn, understand, and apply God’s truth. And we learn it better in the process!