There are a load of Children’s Bibles. A load. Type “children’s Bible” into Amazon and you’ll get a short list of 118,000, give or take a few hundred. Seriously, you can purchase The Unofficial Holy Bible for Minecrafters: A Children’s Guide to the Old and New Testament. I sorta know what Minecraft is, but I definitely don’t know why it requires its own version of the Scripture. As parents of a toddler, my wife and I have been reading the Bible to our little dude every night since he was 2 years old. So we’ve become quite familiar with the Kid’s Bible scene and I thought I might pass along some of our favorites.
The Jesus Storybook Bible by Sally Lloyd-Jones –– If you’ve listened to me teach or preach for any amount of time, my guess is you know about this Bible. I quote from it often and in my opinion, it is the gold standard of Children’s Bibles. Even as a pastor who loves theology, I feel like I’m learning right along with my family from Sally’s excellent narration of the biblical story. She brilliantly and beautifully ties every chapter to Jesus, because, as her subtitle indicates, “every story whispers His name.” As you read this Bible to your kids each day, I promise that your love for Jesus will grow as your kids knowledge of Him increases.The chapters can be a bit long, probably perfect for the 4-5 year old, but they’re manageable for the younger ones as well. And, I should note, the illustrations are superb. If you need a Bible for your pre-schooler, you should probably grab this one first.
The Beginner’s Gospel Story Bible by Jared Kennedy –– A couple admissions to kick things off. I was a member of Jared’s church in Louisville and love everything the guy is doing in the Kid’s ministry there. Secondly, we’re only about halfway through this Bible with our kiddo, but I have read most of it on my own. And I love it. In the past few weeks since I’ve gotten my hands on it, I’ve been recommending it like crazy. The pictures are amazing, the stories are both thoughtful and fun, and the Bible is unique in that it utilizes educational tools every chance it gets. Your kids will learn letters, numbers, colors, etc. as they learn about Jesus and His love for them. The chapters are the perfect length and each one finishes with a question perfectly suited to help you summarize the story with your toddler. I imagine we will take multiple trips through its pages over the next few years with our little man. This Bible is now my top recommendation for the family with young toddlers (2-3yrs old), though it should be useful well into their school years. For me, it really does compete with The Jesus Storybook Bible, and in some ways I like it better. How grateful we should be to live in a day with such great resources to teach the next generation about Jesus!
- A Brief Aside: Though I would now recommend Jared’s Bible first, we still love The Big Picture Story Bible by David Helm, as it was our go-to for Carson in his earliest years. You might also check out The Big Picture Interactive Bible Stories for Toddlers by the Gospel Project if you’re looking for a board book to first introduce your baby to the story of Christ. We use the Gospel Project in our Kids Rock ministry and it is excellent. And all of their Bibles would be great purchases
The Adventure Bible for Early Readers (NiRV) by Lawrence O. Richards –– As your kids enter Kindergarten and begin to read the Bible for themselves, I would highly recommend this version. This is a full Bible (not a Story Bible) that includes every book, chapter, and verse. While there are many translations from which to choose, our Kids Rock staff has found the NiRV (New International Reader’s Version) to be the easiest for kids to read and use. Along with an easy to read translation, this Bible is jam-packed with colorful illustrations and helpful study guides to explain the history of a biblical event or character, as well as great tips to help your elementary student apply the truth of God’s Word to their life. And if you buy one of these, I highly recommend the imitation leather version with fun colors and designs on the cover.
Another Brief Aside: If you’re a Rock Point-er, your kids will receive this Bible (for free!) as they enter kindergarten when they attend the Discover Milestone!
That’s my list. I’d love to hear your recommendations, questions, comments, and thoughts at firstname.lastname@example.org or @jstrick16 on Twitter. No matter which Bible you choose, I’m praying that you’ll make every effort to share the story of Christ with your kids through engaging them in God’s Word!
Jeff Strickland-I am the Discipleship Pastor at Rock Point and a current PhD student at Southern Seminary. I am the father of an energetic, slightly crazy, talkative, and hilarious little man, Carson Nolan. Thankfully, he has an incredible mom, my patient and truly kind wife, Stephanie. Expect my posts to reflect our parenting endeavor and to often be a little on the nerdy side.