The use of catechisms for teaching the truths of Scripture goes back several centuries. The process of using inquiry and response in order to stimulate thought, illustrate the building blocks of a topic and reinforce through repetition is as old as the art of teaching itself. So, it’s no surprise the Reformers and church leaders put the method into practice when it came time to instruct themselves and their children in the doctrines of the biblical faith.
Each lesson in the Building Blocks of the Faith curriculum focuses on one catechism question (perhaps two, if they are related to one another). The format allows for 3 weeks on each lesson, presenting first an explanation of the doctrine behind the question and answer and the words used. Secondly follows a lesson on the Scripture verse that supports the truth of the catechism answer; and third, a Bible lesson that illustrates the truth of the catechism answer. At the end of each series (which comprises about 5-7 lessons) we will employ games, activities and quizzing for the purpose of review and reinforcement.
John Piper offers five reasons drawn from Scripture why churches and families ought to catechize:
1. We are required to "continue in the faith, stable and steadfast" (Col. 1:23).
2. We are urged to "attain to the unity of the... knowledge of the Son of God...so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about by every wind of doctrine" (Eph. 4:13-14).
3. There are many deceivers (1 John 2:26).
4. There are difficult doctrines "which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction" (2 Peter 3:16).
5. Leaders must be raised up who can "give instruction in sound doctrine and also confute those who contradict it" (Titus 1:9).
It is my prayer this catechism instruction will be a means whereby the parents and children of Three Rivers Grace will come to know the Scriptures more intimately and the doctrines with more confidence. There are many accounts of situations where early memorization of biblical truths through catechism have been used by the Holy Spirit to instruct individuals later in life – even being the vehicle the Lord uses to bring His elect to Him.
For more on the use of catechisms in biblically based churches, see
A Baptist Catechism by John Piper http://www.desiringgod.org/about/our-distinctives/our-beliefs/a-baptist-catechism
An Encouragement to Use Catechisms, by Tom Nettles, http://www.founders.org/journal/fj10/article3.html