THIS IS NOT TO SAY THAT CHILDREN’S BIBLES CAN’T ALSO BE A DETRIMENT TO OUR CHILDREN AT TIMES. FOR INSTANCE, MANY SUCH BOOKS MORPH THE BIBLE INTO A SUCCESSION OF MORAL ANECDOTES MEANT TO TEACH CHILDREN HOW TO ACT BETTER. WHILE A CERTAIN LEVEL OF FAMILIARITY WITH BIBLICAL CHARACTERS AND STORIES IS GAINED FROM THESE BOOKS, SOMETHING DANGEROUS LURKS WITHIN THEIR COVERS: A MORALISTIC, WORKSBASED UNDERSTANDING OF CHRISTIANITY. THIS IDEA THAT THE BIBLE IS PRIMARILY ABOUT MORALITY IS A HUGE DETRIMENT TO OUR CHILDREN’S UNDERSTANDING OF THE GOSPEL AND SHOULD BE AVOIDED AT ALL COST. INSTEAD, CHILDREN’S BIBLES SHOULD STRIVE TO MAKE JESUS’ GOSPEL OF GRACE THEIR PRIMARY FOCUS, AS THIS ACCURATELY REFLECTS THE HEART OF THE SCRIPTURES.
38 | CREDO MAGAZINE | JULY 2015
children how to act better. While a certain level of familiarity with biblical characters and stories is gained from these books, something dangerous lurks within their covers: a moralistic, worksbased understanding of Christianity. This idea that the Bible is primarily about morality is a huge detriment to our children’s understanding of the gospel and should be avoided at all cost. Instead, children’s Bibles should strive to make Jesus’ gospel of grace their primary focus, as this accurately reflects the heart of the Scriptures. Thankfully, there are some wonderful storybook Bibles that do just that. Below I will give an overview of the four most popular and helpful children’s Bibles currently on the market. These Bibles are all faithful retellings of the Word of God that avoid the trap of moralism. The Big Picture Story Bible The Big Picture Story Bible, by David Helm (Crossway), is written for the littlest of readers (ages 2-5) and makes a wonderful first Bible for children. Its large illustrations are colorful and interesting, and the amount of text on each page is kept to a minimum. The narration is both simple and conversational. All of these characteristics are a great help in holding the attention of squirmy toddlers and preschoolers. The Big Picture Story Bible excels at what it aims to do: provide a big, understandable picture of the Bible’s one overarching storyline. Beginning at creation and the fall, it traces God’s plan to redeem his creation and restore the kingdom of God. In fact, one of the biggest themes running through this storybook is the kingship of Jesus. While this children’s Bible