It often seems like our church culture is losing interest and trust in the Scriptures and in the true Biblical God. However, against this dark backdrop it is exciting to hear of and meet people who are devoting their time and talent to helping people get to know, trust, love and serve the true Biblical God through His Word. Here is a spot for you to share the resources you have found with the rest of us: Good scripture songs, visual Bibles, Scripture memory websites or computer software, Bible quizzing venues, Marquis Laughlin (or others) dramatically presenting Scripture, unique and creative Scripture memory tools and creative ideas, current Scripture memory challenges, churches/schools/home school groups on fire encouraging, inspiring, and equipping people to memorize Scripture; Biblical dramas, Scripture celebrations and/or quoting sessions, etc. We want to know what's out there and celebrate with you as we together fight Biblical illiteracy in our country to the glory of God.
One of the first blogs to link to Memverse was Ann Voskamp's 'A Holy Experience'. It was a few weeks after Memverse had launched and we definitely weren't ready for the hundreds of people who came pouring in. But many stuck through the bugs and the crashes and the vanishing verses and have since memorized big chunks of the bible. Ann has a way with words and with photos that is an oasis in the frenzy of the web. A few months ago she wrote a blog post on why we should memorize Scripture. This was a quote from her post that has stuck in my head:
[I] know that when men etch Words into cells, orbits shift and when men meet and speak God-words, the demons flee because what else is a double edge sword and who is a warrior who doesn't wield the Word and I know why I bear gaping wounds.
And I know it again, that 'what a heart knows by heart is what a heart really knows' and I've got to hide Words in the chambers, to cut down the soul-stalker, pump pulsing Truth through the veins.
I'm repeating Words.
There is also a great list of resources at the end of the post.
A Holy Experience, motivation
If you've found that having the feedback section makes memorizing the verses a little too easy, there is now an option to turn off the feedback once the interval gets past two months. Some of you might have experienced that feature today because we accidentally rolled it out to everyone. (One of our cats reached out his paw and pounded on my keyboard). It should be working properly now. If you would like to turn off the feedback, go to the profile page and uncheck the option next to 'Always Show Feedback'
It's often tricky memorizing which memory verse goes with which part of the Bible. If you find yourself staring at Psalm 119:11 thinking "I know this verse, I just can't remember which verse in which Psalm it is" then you should start making up a story that goes with each verse reference. For instance, when I see Psalm 119:11 I immediately think that the 9 is hidden in all the 1's and that jogs my memory that the verse is about hiding something somewhere.
The more ridiculous the story is, the easier it is to create the association in your head. You'll find that as you start to have more memory verses, it gets harder to keep track of which verse connects with which reference. Creating an association in your head becomes key.
I'd love to hear some of the associations that people have created. If you use this method for memorizing references, why don't you post your most memorable one in the comments. If you have a different method of memorizing the references, share that with us all too.
I realize that the raison d'etre for Memverse was (in part) the elimination of Bible flash cards. However, so many of you have asked to be able to print your memory verses that I have finally relented. You will now find a link to a PDF of all your memory verses at the end of the list on the 'My Verses' page. The current layout is not final but it will suffice for now.
Those of you who have been memorizing scripture for a while know that one of the challenges is committing the reference to memory. In the past, the Reference Recall section would pick 10 random verses from your 50 most difficult verses for you to review. That system didn't work very well because some verses are difficult to memorize but the reference is easy and vice versa.
The new system will associate a testing interval (Ref Int) and a next test date (Ref Test) with each of your memory verse references. If you're one of the people memorizing passages of scripture, you'll only review the first verse of each section. We encourage you to make it a habit to run through the reference recall test as often as possible. At some point we will be incorporating it into the main memorization section of the website so the sooner you start, the less you will have to review when that first happens.
We have made it easier to report errors in verses. If you look at your "My Verses" page you will see that the final column shows the status for each verse:
- [Editable] - if a verse is shown as being editable it means that you are the only person currently memorizing that verse and you are free to edit it to your heart's content. Please don't take this as an opportunity to enhance the work of the bible translators. Make every effort to have the text match exactly to the translation of your choice. (We highly recommend using Biblegateway or Youversion).
- Pending Verification - once a second person starts memorizing the same verse, it will be flagged to be checked by one of our moderators. At this point you will no longer be able to edit the verse.
- Verified - Once a verse has been checked by a moderator, it is classified as verified and should no longer contain errors.
- Error Reported - If you find a verse that has already been verified but has an error, you can click on the word, 'Verified' and it will flag the verse to be checked again. If you accidentally report a verse as having an error, don't worry, just click again and it will revert to being classified as verified.
Again, when you're entering verses, please make every effort to not make mistakes. We now have thousands of verses being memorized and over time, we'd like to eliminate the manual verification process entirely so that we can spend as much time on other features as possible. We usually have most verses verified within 48 hours but occasionally fall a bit behind. If a verse says, 'Pending Verification' one of our moderators will definitely get to it at some point.
Please note: Verses which are 'Pending Verification' in your list of verses are not to be confused with memory verses that are just 'Pending' (inactive) in your account. For more information about the second type of 'Pending' verses, please see our post on Pending Verses.
If you look at your list of memory verses you will see a column titled 'eFactor'. This is a number that represents the difficulty (or easiness, hence the name) of memorizing a bible verse. Every time you review a verse, the number is adjusted and over time will be a good measure of how easily you retain that particular memory verse.
The eFactor is one of the biggest determinants of the interval between review sessions. If you keep rating your recall as '5 - Perfect', the eFactor will keep increasing and the interval will grow rapidly. If you rate your recall as '3 - Difficult', the eFactor will decrease and the interval between repetitions will grow slowly. Rating your recall as '4 - Hesitation' will leave the eFactor unchanged and the algorithm will assume that it has the speed with which it is increasing the interval just right.
If this explanation makes your head hurt, don't worry about it. Just think of it as the equivalent of sorting your memory verse flash cards from easy to difficult. The good news is that you don't have to keep track of this yourself and you can leave Memverse to figure it out for you.
If you are new to Memverse we highly recommend starting with no more than 5-10 verses. We have noticed that people who add 50 verses on their first day almost always become discouraged and give up. It is very difficult to start memorizing too many new verses at once. If you plan to log in daily, starting with 5-10 verses means that your first memorization sessions will take about ten minutes and will be manageable.
Even if you plan to memorize hundreds (or even thousands) of Bible verses, we still recommend starting with around 10 verses. As you gradually memorize the verses, they will be presented to you for review less frequently and the daily time commitment will start to decline. At that point it is a good idea to add another one or two verses. Always resist the temptation to add more than a couple of verses a day. It is much easier to focus on a few new verses than to be swamped with 20 new Proverbs! (Trust me, I've tried)
You might have noticed that some of the people on the leaderboard are learning around 50 verses at a time. We can assure you that they all worked up to that slowly or suffered through some very frustrating memory sessions. As the verse intervals increase, it is quite possible to have 50 verses on 'Learning' status.
Your daily time commitment is listed on both the home page and on the progress page. Lots of people have found that the best approach is to add verses only when the daily time commitment is below what you're targeting. It will vary slightly from day to day but it is a pretty good guide so keep an eye on it.
tips, getting started
There are a variety of ways to add Bible verses on Memverse. You can go to the popular verses page. As you hover your mouse over a given translation, the text of the verse should appear to the right. You can click on the translation and it will give you the option to add the verse to your list of memory verses.
The main way to add verses is from the 'Add Verse' page, also located under the Home tab. Type the reference for the verse (e.g. Romans 12:1) into the top left box (labelled 'Verse'). If other users have entered the verse you will see the available translations appearing on the right. If the translation you want to use appears on the right you can click it and the verse will be added to your list. There are already thousands of verses in the database so there is a good chance that the verse you want will appear under the available translations.
Alternatively, if the translation you want to use does not appear, you can select the translation in the drop down menu (below the 'Verse' box) and then enter the actual text of the verse into the large box. We recommend either cutting and pasting the text from a website like Bible Gateway or typing it in very carefully from your own Bible. Remember, other people will be using the verses you enter yourself to memorize so don't alter the text to suit yourself!
There is also a list of popular verses on the 'Add Verse' page. You can add those verses to your list of memory verses with a single click.
We are often asked which of the five buttons to select after reviewing a memory verse. There is no hard and fast answer but hopefully this guide will help:
5. Remembered - Perfect
Only select this option when you feel that you are reviewing a memory verse too frequently. Selecting this option will increase the review interval fairly dramatically. As tempting as it is to get the verse memorized as quickly as possible, you will find that you will have an increasingly difficult time recalling the verse if you select this option too frequently. It is best selected when you recall a verse instantly and can recite it perfectly without any hesitation whatsoever.
4. Remembered - Hesitation
We have had difficulty coming up with a suitable label for this option but it is intended to be used when you feel that you have recalled a memory verse to your satisfaction and with only slight hesitation. This is the option to select when everything feels just right. If you think to yourself: "It's a good thing I reviewed this verse now otherwise I might have forgotten it", then you should select this option.
3. Remembered - Difficult
We recommend making frequent use of this option. If you struggle to recall a passage of scripture but can eventually get it correct without flipping over the flash card then you should select this option. If you have any doubt about rating yourself with button 4 or 5 then this is the selection for you. You will get to review the verse more frequently than the two options above but the interval will still continue to increase.
2. Don't Know - Familiar
Either of these next two options will reset the interval to one day and the verse will revert to 'learning' status. Don't worry, bible memorization is a long term effort and starting again sooner, rather than later, will be profitable in the long run. Select this option if you can't associate the bible reference with the memory verse or if you cannot recite or type the verse without using the flash card.
1. Don't Know - No Idea
Select this when you can't remember anything. Memverse will adjust the review of the verse to be more frequent. This is a good option to select when you are starting a new verse as it will start the verse on a more frequent review schedule.
You shouldn't think of the five options as though you are grading yourself on a test. Rather, think of them as you giving feedback to the Memverse system to allow it to adjust the review schedule optimally. It is designed to be a flexible system: if you are the type of person who would like to know each verse backwards and forwards with perfect punctuation, then you can use the five memory assessment options to achieve that goal. If it's not critical to you whether you occasionally substitute the word 'for' in place of 'because' or swap 'Jesus Christ' with 'Christ Jesus' then you can adjust your feedback accordingly.
Finally, don't agonize too much over which button to select. If you remembered the verse select one of the top three buttons. If you can't remember select one of the bottom two. The Memverse algorithm will gradually adjust over time.