Memorizing Bible Verses

I am Peter from Paraparaumu, New Zealand. I’m trying to memorise Bible verses. I’ve got 20 tucked away but I would like to get up to 100 if possible. I figure out the key word for a verse and that becomes my key. but then I have to related that to a reference. For example: If I want to remember the first book of Peter chapter 2 verse 23 a key word could be “wounds” and the reference 1 Peter 2:24. I can remember the words of the verse but tying it into to a reference is my difficulty. Can anyone suggest a good approach. I’m new at this memory thing so I’d appreciate some thoughts.

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Welcome to the site! :slight_smile:

I edited the title of your post to make it easier for people to find your question.

Have you tried searching the forum for the keyword “Bible”? There are some previous discussions about it that might have tips. The search box is in the top menu area of the page.

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If it helps, you could probably customize a PAO system to create mnemonics for each book chapter:verse of the New Testament.

Most of the books are named after a man. So that would be your person. You would need a Action-Object numeric system for the chapter and verse. That is, the chapter number would be an actin and the verse number would be an object.

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Thanks tarnation. I’m a bit slow. Would it be possible to give me an example. Thanks

Here is a link to an excellent explanation of the PAO system that you should start with:

I don’t know which number mnemonic system you use. I use the Major system, but in the link, they provide a small table with some examples using the Dominic system, so let’s use that.

Number Person Action Object
15 Albert Einstein writing blackboard
16 Arnold Schwarzenegger lifting weights
33 Charlie Chaplin swinging cane

To illustrate my idea, imagine you want to remember Matthew 15:33, which (if I got this right) is where disciples are asking Jesus where they are going to find enough bread in the desert to feed 4000 people.

[Note: The following was taken from an online version of the New Revised Standard Version.]

Matthew 15:33

33 The disciples said to him, “Where are we to get enough bread in the desert to feed so great a crowd?”

So, put it all together it might look like the following:
Keyword => ‘bread’
Book => Person => Matthew
Chapter => 15 => Action => writing
Verse => 33 => Object => cane

The name Matthew reminds me of Matt Murdoch (aka Daredevil), so I will use him for my example:
So, our mnemonic image might be something like:

Matt Murdoch (Daredevil) writing on a loaf of bread with his cane.

Hopefully this illustrates the idea. Of course, there are some adjustments you have to make. There is only one book named after Matthew, but there are two named after Peter, four named after John, etc. I would recommend you associate separate characters with each. For example, I might imagine Peter Rabbit for the first Peter and Peter Pan for the second.

Also, some books are not named after people. Acts, for example. I might just substitute by imagining a memorable actor. All that matters is that you associate the name of the book with a real or imaginary character that you can use as the P in the PAO.

Hope this helps,



I hope you’ve seen Gary Lanier’s system. His system is developed for memorizing Bible Verse.

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Visualization is really good for this just you can literally visualize whole chapters! All you have to do is imagine a scene the Bible’s describing(If it’s sinful or sexual don’t visualize everything …) include every detail via metphors or anything else you can imagine then “assign” the “movie” to the verse’s placement I.e the famous John 3:16

Thanks Tarnation. That’s been a huge help.

You have 2 options:

  1. Learn by rote

This is not impossible. I learned Ephesians in a week, very very easily.

My children used to learn weekly Bible verses with no mnemonics at all.

  1. Speak with Gary Lanier