About By the Book

Visual Overview - Why does it work?


Aspect 1: Music

About your brain:

Do you still remember all the words to that annoying TV jingle, or that song you haven’t sung in over 20 years?  When you rote memorize something, your brain has to memorize every single word AND the order that they all come in, which is a lot of information to hold together. Worse yet, it naturally goes to short term memory which means we have to keep reviewing and reviewing or else we’ll forget it by next month.     On the contrary even if you are not musical or it actually takes you longer to memorize the music, God designed certain kinds of music such that your brain only has to remember one word and the rest comes in a big string. Better yet, once you know the tune well the words go straight to long-term memory, so you will still remember it word-perfect 5 years from now without hardly reviewing. That’s why jingles are so memorable.

About our Music:

We are using music as a mnemonic device. Do you remember the first time you listened to a beautiful classical piece? It was gorgeous, but I’m guessing you didn’t walk away with the whole thing memorized. To the contrary, you only had to hear that obnoxious advertisement jingle once, and it was stuck in your head for months. Not all music is created equal as far as memory goes. In a sense, you can think of this James song as one 20-minute-long jingle designed to lodge itself in your memory forever. But we are extremely aware of the potential to dishonor the holy Words of Yahweh by putting deep truths to a cheap jingle. And that is the primary concern our composers have; to make a song that accurately portrays the emotion Yahweh intended, and yet is catchy enough to accidentally memorize. For sections like ‘show no partiality’, the task is easier; you can put it to an orchestral suite or a French accordion song, and neither is dishonoring to the text. Conversely, texts like Isaiah and Malachi have music that resemble battle-scene soundtracks more than jingles. Our primary concern is representing Holy Yahweh accurately, even as we use the tools He’s given us (music) to lodge His Words into the hearts of our families. 

Aspect 2: Dad's Leadership

Biblical Fatherhood:

It has been said that if a child is the first to come to faith, 3.5% of the time the rest of the household follows. If the Mom is the first, the percentage is 17%. However if the Father is the first, 93% of the time the rest of the household follows. Be it true or not, it illustrates a point; God has given great authority to the Father as leader of his household. But how often do we fathers treat that with the gravity we ought?


Fathers are the glue that God designed to teach children to attach meaning to the word of God. It is dangerous to just memorize books of the Bible without understanding it - that breeds hearers of the Word and not doers. We must also understand it. And rather than stripping kids away from their families to teach them Gods Word, or even giving Mom the tools, let's do it the way that God designed. 

By the Book aims to give resources, support, and direction to Dads as they lead a daily family worship that glues the meaning and application of the text to the words that your family is memorizing.

Excerpts from "From one Dad to Another" 

We’ve all heard about the importance of father’s leading their families, but what does that REALLY look like and HOW do we need to be leading? I remember hearing about a father leading his family in devotionals every day, and it inspired me to start once a week. Then, the Lord kept training and disciplining me, and I saw that this is my calling as the leader of our home EVERY day. It’s either I train and lead my family, or the world does. God’s calling, and my primary ministry, are to be in leading my wife and children, seeking to present them complete in Christ. This does not happen by accident and certainly is not easy. There is, and will be, opposition. Spiritual opposition that is real. These counter currents serve as a testimony of just how IMPORTANT this work really is. The enemy attacks where the wound can be most crippling. Dads, we are the target. If we don’t lead our families, Satan has the high ground. Many of us are shaking in our armor like Israel did when thinking about leading our families in DAILY worship and devotions. We are not alone though... I plead with you as a fellow warrior, to use this curriculum to valiantly lead your family to encourage and bolster each of them to join in the victory. All of heaven is behind you. We can look at all of the obstacles and fears, and speak out from the depths of our heart as Elisha did, “Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.”

Aspect 3: Mom's Supporting Resources

A Helpmate:

Dads are the God-appointed leaders who faithfully screw the meaning of the words to the words that we memorize. The Mom’s role is what supports him by applying that consistent pressure throughout the day to hold those two together, and hold that word/meaning combo inside the hearts of their family. The “Mom’s Book” contains a wide selection of creative resources that reinforce the concepts talked about in Family Worship. Beside are some examples of supporting resources included in the Mom's Book that reinforce what Dad has been teaching in family worship.