Thursday, June 21, 2012

Bible Stories Vs. Bible Records

I recently heard author and speaker Ken Ham at our  state's annual homeschool conference. He pointed out that reading those cute little illustrated Bibles to our children is not a good idea and asked what we usually correlate with children’s picture books? We all spoke in unison: Fiction.

Children learn to associate brightly illustrated story books of generally short duration as fictional or “fairy tales”. Enter the picture Bibles.

Brightly colored pictures of Noah’s ark with oversized, silly looking animals popping out and a smiling goofy old man with a long white beard. Does that really portray the truth of a watercraft designed by God to withstand a violent worldwide flood?

Does it inspire the awe inspiring and grave judgment of a God displaying his justified wrath upon the unrepentant and his unspeakable grace to the redeemed? Or does it leave children with an image of a bathtub boat with a Santa-like “character”out for a merry voyage.
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Our children need to be taught that the Bible is not just a book of stories but a book of historical record filled with fascinating documentation of human and earthly origins.

Children are incredibly sharp. Their capacity for learning is extraordinary. Their attention spans may be small, but their ability to process information is not. Ever since our children were very young and I told them stories from the Bible, they were always aware of their truth and they were interchangeable with our own lives and people we know. 

“Remember when Uncle John lost his house in the fire but he praised God anyway? There was a man named Job who had some even harder times come in his life. Remember what happened to him? Let’s read some together…”

There are fabulous accounts of events and people in the Bible. Some are common and we can relate to them. Some are astounding and jaw dropping. But the point is, they are all true. We don’t want to let this fact be escaped on our children. They need to know of the righteousness, the holiness and the wrath of the God who created them. And it’s because he created us that he has prior claim on our lives.

If we are going to plant the fear of the Lord in the hearts of our children, we need tell them true stories read from the actual Bible. If illustrations are wanted, let them draw their own from the narratives they hear. It will be much more meaningful and help the story to linger a little longer in their precious souls.

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1 comment:

Jessica said...

I never thought about it that way before! I like the idea of drawing your own Bible pictures.