If you are a parent of relatively small children and you long to read to them from the Bible, you’ve probably noticed how difficult that can be.
For starters, there are very few 6 year olds who get the King James. And so, you need something a little more read-able and age-appropriate.
So, you start looking at children’s Bibles. You quickly realize those are just as tedious. It’s not the language that bothers you. It’s all those syrup-y sweet, cartoon character illustrations.
Enter The Jesus Storybook Bible. We bought this about a year ago for our (at the time) 5 and 3 year old daughters. Very rarely has a night gone by that we don’t read from this Bible. Here are some highlights:
The illustrations. A guy named Jago did the illustrations and they are out of this world. I mean, they are just fun. They’re colorful and organic and my children love them. You can see some of the illustrations here.
The text. A lady named Sally Lloyd-Jones wrote the actual text of this Bible. She did a great job capturing the thrust of the Bible stories, but writes in such a way that both children and adults are engaged.
For example, one of my favorite stories in this Bible is when Jesus is getting ready to feed the hillside full of people with one young man’s sack lunch. The disciples are freaking out because they don’t have enough food. Here is how Sally Lloyd-Jones writes the scene:
“Now, there was a little boy in the crowd. He had brought a lunch that his mother had made for him that morning. He looked at his five loaves and two fish. It wasn’t much — not neary enough for 5,000 — but it was all he had.
‘I have some,’ he said.
Jesus’ friends laughed when they saw his little lunch. ‘That’s not nearly enough!’ they said.
But they were wrong. Jesus knew it didn’t matter how much the little boy had. God would make it enough, more than enough.
Jesus said, ‘Bring me what you have.’ And so the little boy gave Jesus his lunch. Jesus winked at the littel boy and whispered in his ear, “‘Watch!'” (pg. 246)
Her writing is so good that I will, at times, come to her stories as I prepare to preach and teach. They are so fresh and insightful that I come to them for simple perspectives.
Jesus. I have often taught the students involved in our college ministry that the whole of the Bible, from Genesis to Revelation, points to Jesus. And this Bible shows that to be true. Every story told in The Jesus Storybook Bible turns my kids towards Jesus. In fact, the tagline for the Bible is “Where Every Story Whispers His Name.” I love this.