As I said in part I , this is a tool to study the Bible created by Associate Pastor Chris Peterson of Omaha Bible Church. He based this tool on a study of Colossians.
Today, I would like to go over what each portion of the acronym CRAM stands for, and what to do for it.
C-Character and Truth of God
While CRAMming verses, you look for those things stating the character of God, or one of His truths. This could be something such as -Omniscient- for a character, or Arrogance/pride breeds boastful speech as a stated truth of God through His word. Remember, there is no right or wrong. Entering this with a prayerful attitude will help you see what God wants you to see.
R-Responsibility of the Believer
Look at any demonstrated path the text shows for the believer in God, including specific heart values, attitudes and actions. Note these choices and actions. This part of the CRAM is not about us specifically yet – it is to give a Scriptural example to us.
This might look like:
1. Cheerfully bow the heart, mind and will before the Creator
2. Be encouraged that the proud do not triumph against God
3. Praise Him that he is not A god, but THE God who rules the universe
Now you may already be thinking ahead and realizing that we will be using this information for our next step, which IS about us specifically.
A – Attitudes and Actions
Based on the character/truths, as well as the godly path demonstrated in the text being studied, what must I repent of/change to be on that godly path? Changes should be tangible, sensible and specific. Grand visions are not often completed, but step by step actions can be accomplished through God’s grace.
If you are “putting off” something – removing something that is harming your walk on the path, be sure you are “putting on” something helpful in your walk in its place. If you remove a habit, you will quickly become bored and return to that habit if you are not filling that space with something else. So, if you stop watching television from 6 – 8 pm, what can you do in that time frame that will help you on your godly walk? Note these things specifically so you have a concrete idea of what you are striving for.
Meditation is the deep continued thought coming from a desire to press down and work out the truths being studied into every area of your life. Memorization will more than likely spring from our thinking about the verse or verses so much and so often.
Write down 1-3 verses from the section studied. Or, if you have seen an attitude in your studying that you strongly desire to keep in front of you for correction, select Scripture that will help you reach the goal of changing that attitude. I like to do a bit of both in my personal study. Write these verses down on 3×5 cards, or on sticky notes and place them in areas where you will see them during the day. One instructor suggested moving them around during the day – so their appearance does not become so common place that you take the words for granted. (Sort of like walking around that pile of clothes at the laundry room door thinking you’ll pick them up later … you eventually stop seeing the clothes altogether!)
Next post I will give the steps for CRAMming, and some examples from my personal CRAMming of Psalm 119, I am currently working through.