Nicole recently posted a blog in which she asked if the Word is referring to a holy book we call the Bible or is it referring to God himself. She made some very good points in explaining that the Word is really God himself. Scriptures like John 1:1 clearly say that the Word was God so why all of the confusion?
I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. Psalm 119:11
This scripture has been used to emphasize reading our Bibles as well as scripture memorization. We're told we have to read and memorize scripture in order to get it into our hearts. That way it will be there when we need it. There are even groups that have developed programs to aid in scripture memorization.
I've never been particularly good at scripture memorization. I would try but it required more discipline than I could work up in the natural so I would always give up after a while. Over time, however, I noticed that I just seemed to know scripture. Often, when I needed it, the right scripture would just come to mind. I now understand that the reason that's true is because The Word himself is living in me in the person of the Holy Spirit and he has promised to bring to our remembrance everything Jesus has spoken. (John 14:26)
Psalm 119 was written for Old Testament believers who didn't have Jesus living in them. They had to depend on externals to help them live holy lives. Unfortunately, reading the Bible and memorizing it will never produce holiness on a consistent basis. They always fell short no matter how faithfully they studied the scriptures.
Today, we live under a better covenant. We don't have to hide the Word in our hearts because he's already there. Romans 10:8 says the Word is near us; it's in our mouth and in our hearts. He's already there! As we learn to live out of that reality, we'll experience more and more freedom from sin. Now, we don't read the Bible to keep from sinning. Instead, we read it to help our minds connect with the Word that's already in us and He keeps us from sinning.
Some people enjoy scripture memorization and that's good. For those who enjoy it, it can be an act of worship as long as they understand that the Bible is not the Word but it merely contains the words of Jesus. I absolutely hated doing it so, for me, it was a chore that I did out of obligation. It never helped me to grow as a believer. It just added another weight to my shoulders. Now, I can just relax when I read my Bible and enjoy it because Father has come with his grace and mercy and removed that weight from off of my shoulders.