Meditation Methods


Dr. Don Whitney, a professor at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, has put together a helpful list of methods of meditating on Scripture. It’s important to note that some of these methods will work for you and others will not. I encourage you to try some of them and determine which works best for you and begin meditating on Scripture. Meditating on Scripture will revolutionize your spiritual life. Here’s Dr. Whitney’s list:

Begin by selecting a passage for meditation from your time of reading God’s Word. Choose a verse or phrase that attracted your attention, or a theme verse or key verse from the passage.

1. Emphasize different words in the text.
  1. Whatever He says to you do it (John 2:5).          
  2. Whatever He says to you do it.                        
  3. Whatever He says to you do it.                          
  4. Whatever He says to you do it.
  5. Whatever He says to you do it.
  6. Whatever He says to you do it.
2. Rewrite the verse or phrase in your own words.
3. Formulate a principle from the text—What does it teach?
4. Think of an illustration of the text—What pictures or explains it?
5. Look for applications of the text—What should you do in response to it?
6. Ask how the text points to the Law or the Gospel.
7. Ask how the text points to something about Jesus.
8. Ask what question is answered or problem is solved by the text.
9. Pray through the text.
10. Memorize the text.
11. Create an artistic expression of the text—a song, poem, or sketch.
12. Ask the Philippians 4:8 questions of the text.
  1. What is true or what truth does it exemplify?    
  2. What is lovely about it?
  3. What is honorable about it?                              
  4. What is admirable or commendable about it?
  5. What is right about it?                                      
  6. What is excellent about it?
  7. What is pure or how does it exemplify purity?   
  8. What is praiseworthy about it?
13. Ask the “Joseph Hall” questions of the text.
  1. What is it (define and/or describe what it is)?     
  2. What are its divisions or parts?                       
  3. What causes it?                                            
  4. What does it cause (its fruits and effects)?          
  5. What is its place, location or use?                    
  6. What are its qualities and attachments?
  7. What is contrary, contradictory or different to it?
  8. What compares to it?
  9. What its titles or names?
  10. What are the testimonies or examples of Scripture about it?
14. Set and Discover a minimum number of insights from the text (set the number in advance).
15. Find a link or common thread between all the chapters or paragraphs you’ve read.
16. Ask how the text speaks to your current issue or question.
17. Use Meditation Mapping.
Put the verse(s), phrase, word or topic to be meditated upon in the middle of the page. (When possible, this should be done in picture form.)
  1. Allow insights, ideas and thoughts to come quickly and freely.
  2. Use key words to represent your ideas.
  3. Connect your key words ideas to the central focus with lines.
  4. Use as few words per line as possible.
  5. P-r-i-n-t all the words for easier reading.
  6. Use color for emphasis and recall.
  7. Make frequent use of symbols and pictures in addition to words.

I hope this list is helpful to you as you meditate on the Word of God.


Pastor Ryan
Psalm 19:14