One of the keys to helping kids love their bible – stay one bible ahead of them.
I have this theory (I have lots of little theories) Kids don’t love their Bibles because we keep them in a Bible that is to young for them for to long. Why do we do this?
- We attach sentiment to the Bible they currently have
- We want to keep them babies forever
- We don’t know what Bibles are out there
One of the best kids Bibles ever written is the Jesus Storybook Bible. I gave it to my oldest son around a year and half ago. We have read each story at least 3 or four times each I started noticing something in the fall. He was becoming more interested in Harry Potter and Lego’s than he was in the Bible. I knew it was time for a change. I started looking for a new Bible.
My son was asking about Harry Potter I told him that I don’t really like witches. To which he said why? I told him I don’t like them because they try to do things without God’s help. We all do that sometimes witches do it more often. I then told him there are witches in the Bible, he didn’t believe me, I told him there are dragons, and stories of people getting killed with swords while on the toilet. He didn’t believe me because non of those stories where in his kids bible. I then knew getting a new Bible need to happen soon I searched and I found the perfect Bible for my boy it’s called “The Action Bible.” The Action Bible is basically a revamp of The Picture Bible. It is done in cartoon style so kids can see the story unfold. It is the perfect transition Bible to one full of words.
I wrapped up my son’s new Bible I was a bit nervous. He unwrapped it and didn’t react to much I explained that this Bible had more stories than his last one. There were witches, battles, and dragons. His eyes were huge. I started reading him the story of the witch of Endor, The dragon in Revelation, the story of Jesus casting demons into the pigs, and the valley of the dry bones (did I mention my oldest is a boy). When we were in the middle of the second story he looked up at me and said “Dad, I love my Bible.” It was right then and there my newest theory was formed. This Bible is a bit older for my son but it’s perfect. I think the reason many kids don’t love their Bible is their parents don’t stay one bible ahead. I have seen 6th graders come to Uptown with precious moment Bibles and likewise have seen some 2nd graders with Ryre study Bibles.
Am I sad my oldest has outgrown the Jesus Storybook Bible, Yes. Am I glad he loves his Bible? You betcha.
Here is my stay one Bible ahead plan for my kids.
Board book Bible –
Beginners Bible –
Jesus Story Book Bible –
The Action Bible –
The Day by Day Bible –
The Edge Study Bible –
Student’s Life Application Study Bible NLT –
ESV Study bible –
What theories do you have about helping your kids love the Bible? Here is another post I did about Bibles for kids
26 comments On Helping kids love the bible: Stay one bible ahead
Great post Sam. I love the thought behind staying one Bible ahead. Great way to phrase it.
Another Bible that I like for kids (in addition to the ones that you listed) is the Magnify Bible. It's a "Biblezine" with comic book like artwork, info about the scripture passages kids are reading, and cool next-steps and decotionals. Definitely worth a look: http://www.amazon.com/Magnify-Testament-Biblezine…
Love it thanks for the link will check it out fo-sho
Love how your care if your child loves the Bible or not. As a fellow Children's Minister, I find that many of our kids are bringing their parents KJV Bible. We give out incentives for bringing the Bible, so the kids grab what ever Bible is close. Just last night I asked one of our kids to read and the response I got was "my Bible is to hard to read and people don't talk like that."
Your article, and last nights comment, have me thinking about developing some resource to give to parents on all the children's Bibles out there and the reading level of each. I also think that each child in the Elementary levels need what I call a real Bible. You know the kind with Chapters and Verses. Maybe we could add that to our "Moving on Up Sunday" when we have kids enter the Children's Ministry.
Beau thanks so much for commenting. I understand what you are saying with a real bible. I think it is different with each kid. My son is 6 and a real bible for him right now would be real boring. The picture bible is right up his alley. You have to watch and engage each kid to know what Bible they need when they need it. If kids don't read their bibles they will never understand the amazing power of the gospel from the first to last page. Appreciate you kind words. I am always interested in ways to connect kids to the bible. If you have any thoughts I would love to hear them.
great post Sam! I am ordering the action Bible today. Thank you.
Great post. We really like the Action Bible too. We ordered it for a few of our preteen boys and they are crazy about it. They love the "comic book" feel and are into the stories. I did a post on it over at Growing Kids Ministry if you want to check it out: http://www.growingkidsministry.com/ages-and-stage…
Great alternative to Harry Potter etc. is Jon S. Lewis, who wrote the Grey Griffins series. Youth sci-fi adventure with biblical values but no preaching! Just great adventure as the battle between good and evil wages. The publisher is also offering a contest that provides a free four-week youth group curriculum connecting the adventure book to the story of David and Goliath. Details on the contest at http://www.chaosnovels.com/youthprogram.php.
Hi, on the topic of preteen bibles/devos – I’m looking for a good girls bible/devo/biblezine for ages 10-12 years old, any suggestions?
I’m finding that there are plenty of cool looking bibles/devos/biblezine for teen girls (ie revolve), but the content is too mature for 95% of the girls who come to my jr high program. Ie, there’s stuff in them they just don’t need to read yet. There was a Blossom biblezine printed in 2006 which was awesome, but I've spoken with the publisher and it's outta print… The Manga Bibles and Action Bible are good for guys and SOME girls, but…
Thoughts? Hit me back
thx for your time,
I would suggest The Day by Day Bible – it takes out the genealogies and the other parts of the bible that make reading the bible difficult for younger readers. It is a great bridge bible from a story bible to an actual bible. Or as Jeff suggested the Magnify Biblezine http://www.amazon.com/Magnify-Testament-Biblezine… Hope that helps.
Interesting post I linked you from my twitter.
Thanks for the link I appreciate it.
Wait, this says it all i believe :-): < ;http://www.amazon.com/Magnify-Testament-Biblezine-Kids-Biblezines/dp/B001C2FU0K/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1295539946&sr=8-1>
Sam, I think this is a theme we kidmin need in front of us constantly. I love your theories! The actually "book" is not life or sacred, it's the Word and God stories in the book. It grieves me when I see kids show up with some hymnal looking King James Bible with words so small so small no one actually read it. Our job, I believe is to package the Word of Life in a way that's fresh and causes kids to love it, see truth and understand how to apply it today. I love the story about your son. You're a great dad and example to us all. God's story can be so exciting and cool, that a 5th grader can share it to his friends on the playground with just as much passion and thrill as he does talking about a new, really cool game or movie he saw. I believe we can see, stir and inspire that in our kids. "Whoa…….God is so cool…."
Thanks Tim it was a new concept to me so that's why it's a theory. It seems to be working. Both my boys love their bibles.
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Nicely put Sam. Those are two of my favorites as well. Just about to dive into the Action Bible Devotional and the Action Bible Handbook with my kids (Ages 11, 9, and 5).
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