Ramon J. Canals, DMin, serves as ministerial secretary of the Ministerial Association, General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, Silver Spring, Maryland, United States.

I was captivated by the stunning flower arrangements in the home I was visiting. Their beauty and lifelike appearance compelled me to commend the homeowners. However, my initial admiration was tempered upon learning that the flowers were artificial. Despite their artificiality, they enhanced the ambiance of the house, beautifully blending in with its decor. It struck me then that we increasingly inhabit a world filled with artificiality. The range runs wide, from artificial flavorings and sweeteners in our foods to artificial limbs and organs in medicine. It even includes artificial intelligence (AI) that shapes the way we work and socialize. The list seems endless as we continue to advance and innovate.

AI, NI, SI

According to neuroscientists, the human brain is the most impressive information-processing system that has ever existed. The human brain is a network of about 100 billion interconnected neurons. The connections between those neurons—the synapses of the brain—number in the trillions.1 Our cognitive process is shaped not only by tangible facts but also by abstract ideas, personal sentiments, and ethical values. Within this context, we start to understand the substantial disparity between artificial intelligence and natural intelligence (NI).

While both artificial intelligence and natural intelligence have their merits, neither suffices to satisfy the profound spiritual yearnings of humanity. What is required is supernatural intelligence (SI), a higher form of spiritual understanding. SI can only be attained through the assimilation of the Word of God, guided by the Holy Spirit.

Thoughts and actions

The Scriptures often emphasize the importance of enriching the mind with the Word of God. According to Psalm 1, the difference between the righteous and the wicked lies in what they meditate on. The righteous dwell on the Word of God, His actions and teachings, while the wicked fixate on their sinful desires and deeds. This theme underscores the notion that our thoughts and actions are closely intertwined.

To reshape our minds, we must change the content we fill them with. The Bible emphasizes that God’s people should cherish His words in their hearts: “And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart” (Deut. 6:6). This Old Testament emphasis continues throughout the New Testament, where Paul advises the Colossian church, “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord” (Col. 3:16). These commands imply more than a mere intellectual grasp of the Scriptures. They reflect a profound internalization of God’s Word, often made effective through memorization.

Memorizing scripture

The act of memorizing scripture helps strengthen cognitive ability, making our minds sharper as a result and helping us develop the mind of Christ. It provides spiritual strength in our battle against sin and our corrupt human nature. Jesus, with His intimate knowledge of the Scriptures, quoted from the Old Testament in response to the temptations of Satan (Matt. 4:1–11). His disciples, too, showed deep scriptural knowledge in their sermons (Acts 2:14–36; 7:2–56). Such examples demonstrate the transformative power of internalizing the Scriptures.

The process

Sadly, we often lack the passion seen in these biblical examples, largely due to a failure to internalize God’s Word. One remedy for this spiritual condition is a commitment to memorize a Bible verse daily. It may seem daunting at first, but the process will become easier with practice, eventually enabling the memorization of entire chapters and books of the Bible.

As a practical method for internalizing the Word of God, consider transforming each verse into a prayer. This approach allows the scripture to be deeply ingrained in one’s heart, creating a profound bond with the Word of God.

Here is the process I follow to memorize the Bible: Take a verse like John 15:7, “If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you” (KJV). Break this verse down into smaller phrases, repeating each ten times and transforming each into a prayer. The repetition, coupled with sincere prayer, asking God to send His Holy Spirit to guide the memorization process, helps engrave the verse deeply into the mind and heart. Remember, repetition is key to memorization. But mere memorization is not the goal. We need to seek to understand the will of God. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you understand each Bible verse. because spiritual understanding is our goal.

Artificial intelligence has an important role in our churches. Its capacity to carry out intricate tasks, process vast quantities of data, and even emulate behaviors reminiscent of humans is a testament to its capabilities. Nonetheless, when it comes to matters of spirituality, the human mind, sculpted and enlightened by the Word of God as expressed in Ephesians 1:18, maintains an indisputable superiority. As pastors and spiritual leaders, immerse yourself in the Scriptures to acquire the SI that comes directly from God. Through this practice, we can refine our intellect and strengthen our spiritual lives in a way that artificial intelligence simply cannot replicate.


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Ramon J. Canals, DMin, serves as ministerial secretary of the Ministerial Association, General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, Silver Spring, Maryland, United States.

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