Working in a Christian book store for years, the question always comes up, “What’s the best Children’s Bible?” There are probably thousands of Children’s Bibles on the market and my recommendation comes from what we chose to sell. There may be other good ones out there I am unaware of. Failure to mention them means nothing.
I want two pieces of information in a Children’s Bible. First, I want it to be biblical, meaning I want my kids to later read the Bible and already have a familiarity to the story. There are a lot of cute Bibles out there, and many of them are not biblical in the sense where they address the spiritual reason for the story. Some of them make Noah’s Ark a cute story about animals. Well, it’s not . . . I know, crazy huh? Noah’s Ark rescued people from the wrath of God poured out on man. I have no problem telling my kids God judges sin and hates it.
Second, I want it to be reader friendly. It is a kid’s Bible. It’s not the real Bible. I want my kids to be able to pick it up, read it, and learn from it. I know it’s not Scripture, but if the content is faithful to the Scripture, then they’ll learn important points.
So, recommendation one (with neither one being “greater” than the other). The Big Picture Story Bible by David Helm. Two noteworthy strengths regarding this Bible. First, it is great for young kids (even toddlers and adults) — say 2-7 years old. Second, it connects the stories through out Scripture so the reader can see how David is connected to Abraham to Adam. The central theme is God’s faithfulness to His Promises. I LOVE it.
Recommendation two: The Gospel Story Bible by Marty Machowski. This Bible is for children a little older (4-10ish). There is more depth to the stories here than the Big Picture Story Bible. Yet Marty shows how each story points to Jesus. Sometimes the story sets up the problem (the Fall), an issue, or prophecy that Jesus solves or fulfills. He does a good job tracing the seed from Genesis 3:15 throughout the Bible.
Here is an excerpt of Marty’s summary to Cain and Abel,
“Even though Abel didn’t deserve to be killed by his brother, his death couldn’t fix the problems that sin brought into the world. But one day, another son of Adam, one of his long far-off grandchildren named Jesus, did fix things. Like Abel, Jesus was killed even though he didn’t deserve it. But when he died, Jesus’ blood was able to take away the curse of sin for everyone who believes in him. That’s why the writer of the book of Hebrews tells us that the blood of Jesus speaks a better word than the blood of Abel (Hebrews 12:24).”
Marty also asks questions for discussion at the end of each story.
Finally, if you know of a Children’s Bible that meets the above criteria, please feel free to leave a comment and share the information.