Today, I was a last minute substitute for our 4th-5th grade Sunday School class. We expected class size to be down this weekend, so I decided for a non-traditional lesson plan.
I gathered up all the different story Bibles from around my office and placed them out in front of the class. In case you didn’t know, I love story Bibles. They are a resource I personally buy for families in my church. Plus, I always recommend new believers to read through some of better ones to get a quick introduction to the Scriptures.
We began a very informal discussion time about these books and how they compare to the “real” Bible. I mostly limited my talk to questions and led the class to discover the answers for themselves. I was also generous with my left over Christmas candy…. good way to cut back on Christmas weight gain!
That was the best class we’ve ever had!
At least that’s what my own daughter said– and she’s heard me talk more times then I could count.
Here are a few of the questions we talked about:
- How are these books different the the full grown-up Bible? Why?
- Who wrote these books? Who is the illustrator? Does the full Bible list an author? Why not?
- Should we call these fake Bibles, since they are not the real “Word of God?” Can a book teach God’s Word without having all the “words of the Bible?”
- Can we trust the pictures in these Bibles like we trust memory verses? Who decided what the pictures would look like?
- What kind of talents did God give people to make these story Bibles? Do you think this is a good way to use of those talents? Why or why not?
- Let’s look through each of these story Bibles and try to guess what kind of person the writers were trying to help? (I.E. preschoolers, older elementary kids, lego builders, etc.)
If time allows, you can have the children lookup some familiar stories and see how they compare in each different story Bible. Then talk about the parts from the full Bible that are included or expanded in the children’s book.
I hope this object lesson type idea will help in your ministry or with your own children. Please leave me a comment if you try this kind of talk with your kids.
FYI – The new favorite with our kids was “THE BRICK BIBLE.” It’s like a comic book Bible, except the images are modeled with Lego scenes and characters. It does show more violence than traditional story Bibles, but modeled with lego toy figures. Parental guidance recommended, just like with the real Scriptures. We just bought 4 more copies from Amazon.com (affiliate link).