For some old-timers, a Bible Drill may be a new term for an old experience. Bible Drill is the current day version of the old Sword Drills that many older students of the Bible have been participants. In Psalm 119:11 (NIV), it reads, “I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.” Bible Drill is an attempt to help young people hide God’s words in their hearts.
Children in Baptist churches across the state and country begin practicing learning God’s word in early fall. Over the year, children in grades 4 through 6 will learn 25 memory verses, 10 key passages and all the books of the Bible. Over the three-year cycle, those same students will have committed 75 verses and references to memory, as well as 30 key passages. They will also be able to locate all the books of the Bible.
When sitting in church listening to someone beginning to read a passage of scripture and say “Open your Bibles and turn to Galatians, Chapter 5,” for example, how many of us, have problems finding it. A Bible Driller would more than likely be able to turn very quickly to the passage and be ready to read along.
Do you know your Bible books well enough to follow the scripture reader without having to use the index at the front of the Bible or the finger tabs on the side? Some Sampson County children and youth are experts at locating scripture in their Bibles quickly.
Three Baptist churches in Sampson County have children who participate in Bible Drill.
Susannah Hobbs of Elizabeth Baptist Church calls it “good old-fashioned, scripture-learning Bible Drill.” Churches from the Eastern Baptist Association — Union Grove Baptist Church, led by pastor the Rev. Ray Carter, and Grove Park Baptist Church, led by interim pastor Dr. Glenn Jonas, along with Elizabeth Missionary Baptist, from The New South River Baptist Association, participated recently in one of six regional Bible Drill events held in the state.
“Theses churches have many adult leaders who have been willing to lead, inspire and teach the young people of their churches how to handle God’s word,” expressed Hobbs.
There are four types of Bible Drill. Children’s Bible Drill is for children in grades 4-6. They are required to learn the books of the Bible, how to find them in 10 seconds (without looking at the index), and how to handle the Bible reverently. They learn the order of the books, so when they find one, they can name the book before and after it. The children memorize 25 scriptures and know how to locate 10 key passages. Children in grade 3 may participate only at the church level if they desire but cannot move to the associational nor regional drill levels.
The Youth Bible Drill is for grades 7-9. They have to locate all their verses in 8 seconds. They have a list of verses to identify. They learn doctrinal verses and Bible Answer verses.
The High School Bible Drill (grades 10-12) is also done in 8 seconds. They learn scriptures that teach what the Bible says about different topics, such as, what does the Bible say about God hearing us. They also have to learn and quote the full scripture of Key Biblical Passages, such as the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20:3-17)
The Speaker’s Tournament is for students in grades 10-12. They are given a list of topics such as: Light and Salt; Beauty Inside Out; or Fire Insurance. They are to construct their own original speech on this topic using scripture as reference. Then they present it orally. They are judged on its content and presentation.
All of these drills are performed on a church level, then associational level, then at one of six regional levels. The youth, high school and speakers tournament can also participate in the state finals, if they qualify. Only one person qualifies from each region, in each division. The winner at the state competition in each drill will receive a $2,500 scholarship for college.
These churches competed in the Regional Drill at Coats Baptist Church. “All of the drillers did an excellent job of competing,” shared Hobbs. Union Grove Driller Deana Autry was the overall winner for her division, and will represent her church in the State Drill for the Youth Tournament at Abbots Creek Missionary Baptist Church in High Point on May 12.
“The skills that children learn in Bible Drill will impact the way they relate to the word of God all of their lives. Instead of looking at it as a big book with things that are too hard to understand, they will see the Bible as a manual for all that they face in life, full of words of direction, comfort, correction and hope. They will be very capable of maneuvering through the Holy Word of God,” explained the Elizabeth Baptist Church member.
One can find a summation of why having a good knowledge of the Bible is important in Proverbs 1:2-6 — “To know wisdom and instruction,;To discern the sayings of understanding, to receive instruction in wise behavior, righteousness, justice and equity; To give prudence to the simple, To the youth knowledge and discretion, A wise man will hear and increase in learning, and a man of understanding will acquire wise counsel.”
Do you know a student that would benefit from the Bible Drill Ministry? Would you like to enhance your knowledge of the Bible by helping others learn about it? Most churches begin practicing for the new Bible Drill cycle in September and local competitions begin in March. If you would like to start Bible Drill at your church, contact www.ncbaptist.org and type in the key word: Bible Drill. Any of the churches in this article, would also be glad to help you with the Bible Drill Ministry. For more information contact: Union Grove Baptist Church 910-592-7222; Grove Park Baptist,910-592-3937 or www.groveparkbaptist.com; Elizabeth Missionary Baptist Church, 910)-564-4908 or www.elizabethmbc.com.
What these children learn through Bible Drill will go with them throughout their lives and no one can ever take it from them where ever they may go, Hobbs said.