Steven Beardsley, Newark, DE — Spending time in the Word of God and with godly individuals optimizes the ability of a young person to ultimately choose God. In our experience, there is no youth program that is better at establishing strong Christians than Bible quizzing. We use this ministry as a way to develop fully mature members of the body of Christ. It unlocks the spiritual and human potential of God’s creation and quizzers can go into the world with confidence in word and deed. Competition tends to be about selfish wants, but they can switch the desire of winning to the need for study. Each quiz should be a contest against themselves and how hard they can study. Real life in the Kingdom is not always winning; the secret to abounding is learning how to be abased.
Dale Welch, Peshtigo, WI — The Bible is the greatest life book that there is and those that participate in Bible quizzing tend to develop great study habits and build people skills. As they look deeper into the Word of God, they learn the words on which they can base their life, which molds their character. Now they look at verses in a different way. Not all will become involved and be incredibly enthusiastic about joining. Good Bible quiz coordinators will aid the success of the program. Some students will excel, others will seem apprehensive and unwilling to study hard. Becoming involved in Bible quizzing always opens up the children and young people to step forward, become more involved, and volunteer for other church events.
Vance Bowman, Shawnee, OK — The sooner you can start a Bible quizzing program in your church, the better. There is no substitute for hiding the Word in your young people’s heart. It establishes them in their faith and in the Bible. Many children who do not have the Holy Ghost receive it within a year of quizzing. The same young people who compete against each other in tournaments can be seen praying for one another at the Holy Ghost rallies. This is what really matters. Churches established in this ministry are willing to assist other churches in the start-up process. Financial sacrifice is always necessary where children are involved.
Jason Staten, Lexington Park, MD — The key to a successful Bible quizzing ministry is having a knowledgeable director and a pastor who is actively involved. It is difficult to keep the program running without these. If you succeed, you will see a greater investment in the Word and personal spiritual growth in your students. Competition seems to be more difficult for the parents than the young people due to the desire to see their child succeed. However, most quizzers seem to keep the competitive part of quizzing in its proper context and make great friendships with the other quizzers. The various ways they learn to memorize the verses help them form creative ways to commit things to memory, which will benefit them later in any career path.
Jerry Burns, Rio Rancho, NM — For over 20 years we have had Bible quizzing in our church and have seen dramatic changes in our children and youth. While many of our churches are losing a majority of their young people to this world, Living Word Church is keeping upwards of 95%. Anytime you have a large number of your students committing over 500 Scriptures annually to memory, you can certainly expect a positive outcome. To start, I suggest having a meeting with potential quizzers and taking them to a district quiz meet to show them how interesting it is. You must start with individuals who are not afraid of committing to hard work and long hours of instruction and study. Pastors need to be willing to commit considerable finances to the program.
Michael Ensey, St. Louis, MO — For 31 years I have been involved in Bible quizzing as a quizzer, coach, quiz parent, and administrator through district and North American oversight. The many benefits include developing personal discipline and proper study habits, which often lead to academic improvement. Doing something that is difficult and being committed without the option to quit builds something into children and teenagers. It is also a very powerful social tool as quizzers learn teamwork and build relationships. There are many great resources available for new teams at www.seniorbiblequizzing.com. Like with any spiritual discipline (prayer and fasting), one must do it with the right spirit and motive. The ultimate motivating factor should be to develop a stronger relationship with God through studying His Word. It becomes part of one’s daily devotion. Everything we do is unto the Lord.
Sam Emory, Merced, CA — If our students can memorize a rap song, then they can memorize the Word of God. However, memorizing the Word is much more important because it grows in hearts and minds. It ingrains in young people the Pentecostal principles that will keep them strong. To start a Bible quizzing program, a church must begin with a person who has a burden for it. The tournaments are not all about winning the trophy. The margin of success is not what you come home with but what you take to them. Whether you win or lose, keep a good attitude and remember that learning to lose is a virtue. The team wins the trophy, not the individuals. All should be congratulated because the Word of God is the ultimate prize.
Justin Gleason, Kansas City, MO — Since the late 1970s, the Life Church of Kansas City has had a UPCI Bible quizzing ministry. What amazing spiritual changes we have seen in the lives of our quizzers. The more a person goes into the depths of God’s Word, the higher they go in God’s Holy Spirit and ministry. We have observed a common pattern, that after a Bible quizzer leaves their youth years and becomes an adult, they remain committed to God and the church. It is very rare for us to see a committed Bible quizzer become spiritually discouraged and backslide. Also, the techniques quizzers learn have the potential to advance a student in school, extracurricular activity, and benefit college or career resumes. Quizzers are impressive people.