My first Bible
A TREASURY OF FAVOURITES
illustrated by Gillian Chapman
My first Bible
Leena Lane, illustrated by Gillian Chapman
in a Bible for small children, there are always several tensions. Sometimes I'm asked for a complete illustrated children's Bible. There are several challenges with that. If it were both complete and illustrated, then it would a massive tome. In addition, in a complete Bible there are many passages that would be incomprehensible to little minds. But then which stories should be included? If the stories are abridged, then there is the question of accuracy. How do you present a Bible story in a very few words, while maintaining the central thrust of the passage? I believe that My first Bible is one of the best answers to this and other conundrums.
Some children's Bibles have a very small selection of Bible stories. My first Bible contains 59 Old Testament stories and 56 from the New Testament. The illustrations really portray the heart of the stories. They are placed in and around the text in such a way as to keep the overall dimensions of the hardback manageable for smaller hands.
Here is a sample story from the Old Testament, which I have chosen at random:
'Jonah and the big fish:
But God saved Jonah from drowning. He sent an enormous fish to come and swallow up Jonah. Inside the fish, Jonah prayed to God. "Thank You for saving me!" he prayed. "You are a great God."
Jonah stayed inside the fish for three days and three nights. It was very dark and smelly. Then the fish spat him out on a beach.
"Now go to Nineveh!" said God. This time Jonah did as God had asked him.
God wanted to show His love for all the people of Nineveh. He gave them a chance to say sorry for all the wrong things they had done and He forgave them.'
And one from the New Testament:
'Peter pretends not to know Jesus:
Jesus' other friends were very upset, especially Peter. Earlier that evening, Jesus had warned Peter: "Before the cock crows tonight, you will say three times that you do not know Me". Peter couldn't understand it. Jesus was his friend! Peter wouldn't let him down.
But while Peter was waiting to see what would happen to Jesus, some girls came up to him and asked if he was a friend of Jesus.
"No", said Peter. "I don't know what you are talking about!" They asked him three times and each time he said, "No!"
Then suddenly a cock crowed. Peter remembered what Jesus had said. Peter felt terrible and cried bitterly. He had wanted to be a good friend to Jesus, but now he had really let Jesus down.'
A really nice little addition in My first Bible is a section at the end: Where to find the stories in the Bible. As children grow older, this will enable them to look up the already familiar stories in a complete Bible.
My first Bible is suitable for reading aloud to very young children, while they look at the pictures. Children will naturally transition to following the words, and then reading them for themselves.