Windows Phone App

Time Posted on April 14, 2015 User Andy Comment 5 comments

One of our users, Kayle Hinkle, has created an app for those of you who use Windows Phone 8.1. It has a few limitations but I imagine Kayle is going to keep adding functionality with future releases.

The app will download your existing verses when you first login and will synchronize your progress with Memverse. At the moment it doesn't automatically synchronize new verses that you add/delete on the main website.

This is a great tool for those of you who want to memorize on the go!

Try it out and give us feedback.


Cat New Feature
Tag mobile app

Synchronized Sections

Time Posted on January 01, 2015 User Andy Comment 12 comments

Today we have released an early version of a feature that I envisioned over three years ago. Those of you who memorize extended passages of the Bible might have noticed that there is sometimes a lack of context and continuity as verses which should appear contiguously unfortunately are reviewed haphazardly over the weeks.

This is most acute in chapters such as Matthew 5-7 (the Sermon on the Mount). I think most would agree that the following verses form a logical unit and should be grouped together during review:

“When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show others they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, so that it will not be obvious to others that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

I had always hoped that as people added passages it would gradually become clear which verses should be grouped together within a passage. It turns out that is, indeed, the case. Enough users who have a heart for fasting - but less for prayer and giving wink - have added the above verses and not the surrounding verses and it is possible to infer that Matt 6:16-18 belong together.

Clearly this works best in sections of the Bible that are heavily memorized and less well in the minor prophets (I always think it will be awkward when we meet Obadiah one day and he asks us what we thought of his book!).

This feature is still a work in progress and I am currently the only one using it. If you like living on the edge, you can enable Synchronize Subsections on your Update Profile page. This will ensure that over time, related verses will be reviewed on the same day and the review interval will be synchronized. Please leave feedback or comments by clicking the black 'Feedback' tab on the right. We will be refining this feature over the coming months so feel free to wait if you want. 

One of the disadvantages of this feature is that if you forget one verse in a subsection, the whole subsection will reset and appear to be unmemorized. If you'd like to see how your passages have been subsectioned, you can navigate to this secret page and click on the relevant passage. The last number in the list that appears shows the various subpassages.

We highly recommend that most of you wait for a few months before enabling this feature.

I hope you all have a blessed 2015.

Cat New Feature
Tag memorization, passages

Review Systems

Time Posted on November 10, 2014 User Bethany McLee Comment 29 comments

As many of you reading this probably already know, Memverse has a great review system. The Memverse review system is probably one of the best ones out there on the internet. But what about when you don't have access to the internet or a computer? How do you both memorize those flash cards and keep them up to date?

There are many ways you can do this, but I've combined a few and added some things of my own to create a review system that has been helping me. Now, I only started using this review system a couple of weeks ago, so I can't say for sure how it will work out in the end, but it seems to be working so far.

Set Up
I have a wooden box that is divided into four squares. Each of the four squares just fits the width of an index card, so I use index cards as my flash cards (at least until Bible Bee starts up again; then I'll have to trim down their verse cards to fit). Of course, you don't have to use a box! You can use piles of cards on your desk, plastic bags, flower pots - whatever works for you.

On each of my flash cards, I drew eleven circles. That's right, eleven - not ten. (This will be important later.) Every time I recite the verse correctly (no prompts, start-overs, or mistakes), I make a mark in one of the circles. One catch - I can only make one to two marks per day, no matter how many times that day I recite it correctly. But if I want to make two marks, I must recite the verse once in the morning and once in the evening, not back to back. (Reciting them with a good amount of time in between is important! When I was memorizing the short passages for Bible Bee Nationals, I often memorized the verse quickly and recited it quickly and considered it memorized, but I wouldn't be able to recite it the next day. I had it memorized in my short term memory, but not long term.)

The System
Step One: "Don't Know It Yet"
This is the first square in my box, the first place a verse card goes once I've made the card. The cards in this box are those I am not actively trying to memorize but know I will be working on soon. I read through these three or more times per week to get an idea of what they are about.

Step Two: "Working On It..."
This is the second square in my box. Once I am ready to begin memorizing a verse, the card is moved here. I read through these at least five times a day, not counting the times I try to recite it without looking. I can start making marks in those circles on the cards now. A card stays in this square until I have recited it two times.

Step Three: "Almost There..."
This is the third square in my box. Now that I have made two marks on my verse card, the card moves here. These verses I read through at least ten times a day. I must recite this verse correctly five times before it can move on. (Like I said in the "Set Up" section, though, only 1-2 correct recitations per day count towards the marks.)

Step Four: "Got It!"
This is the last square in my box, but it's not the last step. Verses move here once I have recited them correctly five times. I only read through these one or two times a day (variable depending on how long or hard the passage is). Once I have every circle filled in on my cards, then they can leave this box. Now is where that eleventh circle comes in. If you're anything like me, you might think once you fill in the tenth circle, "Ten times? That's a good, even number, and I've done a lot of work to get it this far. I'll just be done with it now." At least, I think like that sometimes. But by filling in that eleventh circle, I've done an extra review and the verse should be extra solid.

Step Five: "I Don't Know What To Call This Yet!"
I just implemented this into my system, so I haven't been able to test it yet, but this is how it should work. Once a verse has been recited perfectly eleven times, the card moves here. If you have a box with five squares, use that fifth square for this. I only have four squares, so I'll find a place to put the stack of verses in this category. Maybe right next to my box. Anyway, these verses are the ones that I have completely memorized, so I'll read through and review these a couple of times per week. If at any time I find that I can't remember a section or a word in the verse, I'll move this back to the "Amost There" or "Got It" stage to work on it some more.

Well, that's the system I've come up with! How do you keep verses up-to-date aside from Memverse? I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Cat Tips
Tag Review

2014 Nationals Resources

Time Posted on October 20, 2014 User Nathan Wright (Moderator) Comment 30 comments

They're here! Both oral and written practice tests have been cranked out by our fellow Bible Bee-ers for all the different divisions and translations! Below are .zip files from which you can select which test you will use. The second test is aimed mostly at Seniors, as it has quite a few memory verse questions. It is recommended that you make use of as many resources as you can use.



Practice Test 2

Also, our friend Mandy makes videos with helpful information, and Zachary has a page on his website dedicated to Bible Bee study tools, including a prompterizer generator!

Mandy's Channel

Zachary's Page

Finally, here are some resources that were recommended for this post so more people can be aware of them.

And of course, there are the MemVerse quizzes.

Be sure to comment so you can thank the contestants who are sharing all they've learned!

Cat Bible Bee
Tag Bible Bee, resources, 2014

2014 Nationals Quizzes

Time Posted on August 31, 2014 User Nathan Wright (Moderator) Comment 49 comments

Yes; that's right. The Bible Bee quizzes are not over this year! God-willing, we will be continuing them just as we did the Locals quizzes: 4:00 pm EST every Thursday, then a rerun on Tuesday at noon EST. You may partake in these quizzes even if you did not make it to Nationals, are not in the Bible Bee, are not eligible for the Bible Bee, etc. We will not fence the quizzes in any way.

Since the Nationals memory passages are "unique to each age division and do not overlap" (in the words of the Bible Bee's website), there will be no recitation questions except for verses 2 and 3 of chapter 1--very occasionally--which we memorized for Locals. However, when we get further into the study, there might be some reference questions about the book of Nahum.

Important: the quizzes will rely heavily on question submissions.  We will want to have many questions about Greek words and cross-references; this way, contestants can introduce other contestants to what they've learned.  And please add {Nationals} in the text before the question.

For review, PDFs of the quizzes are also up for download (after they've been run on MemVerse, of course)!

Click below for access to the October 28th quiz room.

Alt. text:  "Click to enter the quiz room."

Cat Quizzes
Tag quiz, bible bee, cross reference, hebrew, greek, nationals

Bubble Sheet for Practice Tests

Time Posted on August 22, 2014 User Nathan Wright (Moderator) Comment 2 comments

Note: This is different from the scan sheets available at These sheets only have bubbles--which are much easier to fill in.

Presenting a new resource that will make the practice test experience even more like the real deal!  The locals test tomorrow will have sheets with the questions, like the practice tests, but also a bubble sheet on which answers will be filled in.  The bubbles must be completely filled in, which takes longer than just circling the right answer on the practice test--and with 200 questions, this could make a reletively significant difference for contestants who want to ascertain how prepared they are by taking the practice tests.  So, thanks to's bubble test generator, here is a bubble sheet with 200 questions (the Primaries can only print the first page).


Also, ANNOUNCEMENT: There will be a third rerun, at 9:00 PM EST today!!!

Cat Resources
Tag Bible Bee, practice tests

2014 Bible Bee Resources

Time Posted on August 09, 2014 User Alex Watt Comment 32 comments

The much-anticipated practice exams arrived late last night, and we also have a few other resources to share with you. Some of you may notice that the tests have been delivered earlier each year — this year, by about a week.

Primary Test: PDF Answers: PDF
Junior Test: PDF Answers: PDF
Senior Test: PDF Answers: PDF

See here for a bubble sheet to make the practice test experience as close as possible to contest day; the Bible Bee's site also offers scan sheets for 100 questions and for 200 questions.

Please note that these practice tests and other resources were created by volunteers and are in no way endorsed by the Shelby Kennedy Foundation, which hosts the National Bible Bee.

Other resources:

  • Weekly Bible Bee quizzes. Thank you to Nathan Wright for taking charge of the Bible Bee quizzes. You're doing a great job.
  • Past quiz questions. Naturally we have only included the multiple choice questions. Please let us know if you spot errors in the questions; there are probably at least a few. These did not undergo the same level of scrutiny as those in the practice exams.
  • Bible Bee study videos: On Vimeo here. Bethany and Landon Meckle review the content of the past few weeks and share suggestions given by other people. You can submit a suggestion, too. You can also access them at Bethany's Weebly site.
  • Free songs for Bible Bee verses: Please see here on Mustard Seed Faith Media's site. You can listen to and download these songs for free. They are sung by Nathan in all four translations.
  • Bonus practice test: Andrew Adams and Everett Chew prepared another practice exam, aimed at Juniors and Seniors. Here is the test; here are the answers.
  • Final quiz:  One last broad review quiz will be held here on MemVerse the day before locals.  See the link for more details.

If you have another resource to add, please leave a comment and we will try to include it.

Cat Resources
Tag Bible Bee, practice tests

Final Locals Quiz

Time Posted on August 08, 2014 User Nathan Wright (Moderator) Comment 22 comments

Agust 23rd is the day on which Summer Bible Bee conestants will approach a desk with sweaty forehead, shaking hands, and pounding heart to take their final examination of Jonah--which will determine whether or not they will be faced with an even larger challenge this autumn!  In preparation for this, I am excited to announce a wrap-up bonus quiz the day before local contest day!  This will be Friday, August 22.  LORD willing, the quiz will run for the first time at noon EST; then there will be a rerun at 4:00 PM EST (to ensure that as many people as possible can come).  If you can't come to either of those, check for updates on that day; it's possible we might rerun it again later in the evening--but no guarantees.  For easy access, I pasted the portal to the room in the box below this paragraph.  Bookmark it in your browser and tell all your Bible Bee friends--and as always, you don't have to be in the Bible Bee to partake in this quiz!

{Edit} ANNOUNCEMENT: There will be a third rerun, at 9:00 PM EST today!!!

We don't know what day our Lord will return, but we do know what day we will take our locals test--so watch and pray in preparation both!


[Outdated material shown below]

I decided to announce that now so I could make a request of you all at the same time: we really need more cross-reference questions.  Some of you just groaned at that, and I can relate, as they are difficult.  But cross-references are a significant part of the written test, and when I put the latest and next quiz together, there were barely any questions related to cross-references.  I will provide some more questions for Hebrew/Greek words; if you all could submit some cross-reference questions, that would be much appreciated.  Of course, I will balance it well with other material in the quizzes.


Cat Quizzes
Tag quiz, bible bee, cross reference, hebrew, greek, locals

2014 Bible Bee Micro Practice Tests

Time Posted on July 11, 2014 User Alex Watt Comment 57 comments

This year, fellow Bible Bee participants, led by Matthew Minica, have put together micro quarter-length practice tests (25 questions for Primary, 50 questions for Junior and Senior), intended for local events this month. Full length tests should be available in early August.

Tests are available as PDF files: Primary | Junior | Senior. The answers (no peeking!) are available here.

See here for a bubble sheet to make the practice test experience as close as possible to contest day.

Please note that these practice tests were created by volunteers and are in no way endorsed by the Shelby Kennedy Foundation, which hosts the National Bible Bee.

Cat Resources
Tag Bible Bee, practice tests

2014 Bible Bee Quizzes

Time Posted on June 17, 2014 User Alex Watt Comment 62 comments

We're excited to have live Bible Bee quizzes on Memverse again this year! Quizzes will be each Thursday, starting June 26, at 4:00 p.m. EDT, with a re-run quiz on the following Tuesday at 12:00 p.m. EDT. We'll keep you posted — we may even have an extra quiz in the days leading up to August 23.

To enter the August 21 quiz room, click here [OUTDATED]. You do not have to be doing the Bible Bee this year to join us!

I suggest arriving a few minutes early to make sure you're ready to go when it starts. You'll also want to make sure your Memverse Bible translation (see Account -> Profile) is one of the Bible Bee's accepted translations.

Have a blessed summer in the Word! And please spread the word about the quizzes!

Update July 1: I would really appreciate if you would help write questions for the next quiz. Please submit them via the Submit a Quiz Question page, and preface your question with "Bible Bee: " -- that way I can find the ones you submitted. I will edit the text to remove "Bible Bee: " after adding it to a quiz.

Please try to write quiz questions that can be used for general knowledge quizzes as well. Thanks for your help!

Update July 6: Thank you very much for all your submissions!  We have 25 excellent questions for the upcoming quiz!

Exodus 36:5  And they spake unto Moses, saying, The people bring much more than enough for the service of the work, which the LORD commanded to make.


Cat Quizzes
Tag Bible Bee

Spurgeon on Memorization

Time Posted on May 25, 2014 User Bethany McLee Comment 24 comments

“The Bible in the memory is better than the Bible in the book case.”

“Be walking Bibles.”

“It is well to have a good memory and that is the best memory which remembers what is best worth remembering.”

“A Bible that’s falling apart usually belongs to someone who isn’t.”

“Holy Scripture requires searching—much of it can only be learned by careful study.”

“He who does not long to know more of Christ, knows nothing of Him yet.”

“It is needful to dwell on this head, because many Christians appear to think that if they are just believers, it is enough. We do not in business think it is enough if we barely escape bankruptcy. A man does not say, if his dear child has been ill in bed for  years, that it is quite enough so long as the child is alive. We do not think that of our own bodies, that so long as we can breathe it is enough.”

“Those who are never tried usually possess a poor, tottering faith but trial, especially persecution, is like the rough March wind which goes howling through the forest, and while the young oaks are almost torn up by the roots at first, it loosens the soil for them, and they send out more rootlets, till they get such a firm grip that they defy the hurricane. That which shakes them at first strengthens them afterwards.”

“Our anxiety does not empty tomorrow of its sorrows, but only empties today of its strengths.”

“By perseverance the snail reached the ark.”

“Every Christian is either a missionary or an imposter.”

“Nobody ever outgrows Scripture; the book widens and deepens with our years.”

“We should be better Christians if we were more alone, waiting upon God, and gathering through meditation on His Word spiritual strength for labour in his service.”

“Visit many good books, but live in the Bible.”

“All human books grow stale after a time - but with the Word of God the desire to study it increases, while the more you know of it the less you think you know.”

“The Book grows upon you: as you dive into its depths you have a fuller perception of the infinity which remains to be explored. You are still sighing to enjoy more of that which it is your bliss to taste.”

“Half our fears arise from neglect of the Bible.”

“The word of God is always most precious to the man who most lives upon it.”

~ Charles Haddon Spurgeon


Do you know of any other Spurgeon quotes directly or indirectly related to Scripture memory? Post them in the comments and I can add them to this list!

Cat Quotes
Tag Spurgeon, Quotes

Improved Security at Memverse

Time Posted on April 29, 2014 User Andy Comment 13 comments

There has been a lot in the news recently about security flaws in the internet. We decided to take this opportunity to upgrade the security of Memverse. All traffic to and from the Memverse servers is now encrypted using a technology called SSL. We don't have any reason to suspect that Memverse was compromised previously but, as you've no doubt heard from other websites, this would be a good time to change your password. (You will need to log out first, then follow that link to go through the forgot password process, which will let you reset it.)

This change was also responsible for some of bugs that have caused the site to not function properly on older versions of Internet Explorer. We're still trying to fix that, but this might also be a good time to switch to either Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox. Microsoft announced today that there is a fairly serious security flaw in all versions of Internet Explorer.

Cat Admin
Tag ssl, security

Memverse's Referral System

Time Posted on April 22, 2014 User Andy Comment 18 comments

There have been a lot of questions about the current referral system at Memverse. We have been remiss in explaining both the motivation behind it and the recent changes we have made.

First, we'd like to explain the context. As many of you have no doubt experienced, memorizing the Bible is hard. It requires sustained discipline over a long period of time and the benefits tend to accrue slowly. Consequently, attrition is very high. Well over 90% of people who sign up are no longer active a few months later. We have spent a lot of time trying to make the site more intuitive and easier to use and we will continue to do so. The reality, though, is that "life's worries, riches and pleasures" frequently intrude and users disappear. The valleys in my own consistency chart could be annotated with life events like new babies, moving house, and sometimes just sheer laziness.

When we started Memverse we spent a lot of money advertising the site to attract new users. It cost roughly $10 for each new user. It soon became clear that it would be prohibitively expensive to continue advertising since we had committed to the site remaining both free to use and largely free of advertising (apart from a token ad slot on the blog). Part of the problem was that it was very difficult to target advertising to people who are likely to use Memverse over an extended period of time.

This was the genesis of the referral system: who better than our existing users would know whom to tell about Memverse. We coupled the referral system to the level progression since any such system requires some element of 'reward'. The usual method is to offer a subscription discount, but since we don't charge users, that wasn't possible.

Four months ago, in response to the dissatisfaction that many had expressed, we changed the way referrals are counted. Whereas before no credit was given for inactive referrals, we now give 50% credit. 25% credit was also given for 'referrals of referrals'. We never got round to announcing these changes which unfortunately perpetuated the perception that we were unresponsive on this issue. Sorry about that.

Second, we can assure you that the referral system is essential to Memverse's ongoing existence. Users referred by existing users are far more likely to persist in memorizing. Our hope was that people would be creative in finding ways to spread the word. That was indeed frequently the case and it has been great to see the influx of new users from mini campaigns on social websites and blogs. Advocate marketing can be powerful but we have learned that it is not for everyone.

So what is the path forward? Over time we will likely continue to make the referral system less of an obstacle to level progression as we observe the effects of the change earlier this year. We might also add a page which will allow users to make a financial donation and skip over the referral quests. To be honest, though, we would prefer to work on features that benefit all users.

Finally, growing the number of users is not merely for our own vanity. There are many features (live quizzes is one example) that are only possible at a certain scale. Thanks to all of you who have helped spread the word. Thanks also for all the praise and encouragement -- it more than cancels out the occasional disparaging comments. We have come a long way on a shoestring budget but we still have a lot to do.

Cat Admin
Tag referrals

My Unintentional Hiatus from Memorizing

Time Posted on April 04, 2014 User Dakota Lynch Comment 11 comments

In many ways 2013 was a year of change for me. Professionally, most of these changes were good as my part-time job became a full-time position shortly after I graduated from high school in 2012. Unfortunately, this also meant I had much less free time to devote to Scripture memorization and other spiritual disciplines, and I struggled to make good use of what free time I did have. I never completely gave up on my memory work, but by the holidays many of my most cherished passages of Scripture were starting to fade from memory.

Although I’ve never been big on New Year’s resolutions, I resolved to make 2014 a year of recommitment to both Scripture memorization and my walk with God as a whole. I didn’t want to be like the man in Proverbs 12:27 who wasted the venison he took in hunting by neglecting to maintain my many hard-learned verses in memory. I had put in too many hours of hard work to let it all go to waste.

I had just purchased a new iPod, and decided that recording all of my memory verses individually and listening to them during my daily commute would be a simple enough way to get back into Scripture memorization. By adding these verses to a separate playlist and tapping “Shuffle”, I was able to effortlessly review 200+ verses on my way to work each morning. I even figured out a way to use the Bluetooth headset I typically wear while driving to listen to verse after verse while shopping or running other errands.

Of course Memverse continued to be an invaluable part of my memory work, and I resumed using it on a daily basis. I took accuracy and reference recall tests for the first time in months, even though I knew it would likely result in a decrease in my scoring, and used the chapter review feature to reacquaint myself with Isaiah 53 and John 17 – two of my favorite chapters, but ones that I was no longer able to recite verbatim.

Interestingly enough, I discovered that it’s much easier to relearn verses you once knew than it was to learn them in the first place; in only a few weeks I felt confident enough to start quoting most of my complete chapters again, and my overall accuracy was back to where it needed to be.

I also started learning new verses for the first time in months, and found that this made it much easier to stay motivated in my memory work as a whole. As someone who is very goal-oriented, starting work on a new chapter or selection of verses gives me a specific objective to focus on and helps keep me going. As important as review is, I find reciting from the same set of verses day after day to be tiresome and unexciting unless I'm mixing in something new as well.

What about you? How do you stay motivated to continue memorizing Scripture, even when you don't necessarily feel like doing it? Is there a specific routine that works well for you, and if so how do you avoid becoming burnt out through repetition? I'd especially love to hear from any readers who may have, like me, taken an unintentional hiatus from memorizing - even if you haven't yet fully restarted.

Cat Tips

2014 Bible Challenge

Time Posted on December 19, 2013 User Alex Watt Comment 44 comments

As you plan the new year, we have a guest post to share with you from Bethany Meckle. We hope you all have a blessed Christmas and enter 2014 with even stronger hope in things not seen, but nevertheless real (Hebrews 11:1)!

The 2014 Bible Challenge is a two part schedule - Part One is a reading plan (read through the New Testament) and Part Two is a memorizing plan (memorize the Sermon on the Mount). You can join Part One, Part Two, or both if you'd like! 

The challenge begins January 1st and ends May 31st. The beginning of the year is a good time to get back into the Word if you've slacked off over the year (like I tend to do), or even if you've been going strong all year. I also timed it so that the challenge ends the day before the 2014 Bible Bee studies begins, so it won't conflict with that for any of you who are in the Bee. 

If you decide not to join the challenge, please share this anyway with anyone that you think would be interested. The more people the better! 

After you sign up below, you should be able to access the Reading and Memory schedules on the confirmation page. (If not, just leave a comment and I'll get them to you.) 

Cat Resources