Choosing a bible that your child would love can sometimes be a tough feat.
How do you know what kind of Bible you should buy for your child?
And what are the things you should consider in getting a bible that your child will come to cherish and make their own?
In this post, I share with you the four top things you need to consider when shopping for a new bible for your child.
Do you prefer video? Then watch here.
Before I share these top four things, you should note that the point of getting your child a bible is to actually read it!
And what better way to develop this discipline of bible reading than to teach your child by example – reading the bible together as a family.
Now that we have gotten that out of the way, at what age should your child get their personal bible?
Well, that depends on several factors – a family tradition, the age where they are able to read, from birth if you want it to be a keepsake for them.
In my family, we spend time together daily, reading the Bible and most times, alongside that, a family devotional.
As a family tradition, we usually celebrate each child’s 5th birthday with the gift of a bible. So, the choice of what kind of bible to buy happens once their fifth birthday is approaching.
Why their fifth birthday?
My children started to read from about age 3 and by age 5, they had mastered good enough reading techniques to read the bible independently and to follow a story well enough. So buying each child their personal bible at the age of five was a good decision for us a family.
Remember, whatever you do should feel right based on your family dynamics.
So, back to how you can choose what kind of bible is right for your child.
No matter what age you choose to buy your child a bible, these four important questions are what you should ask yourself to guide your choice.
What factors should I consider when I need to buy a bible for my child?
1. Is it a bible?
Funny question, right? Maybe or maybe not.
We have two kind of bible options.
One is the storybook bible which is a short story-like summary or adaptation of some stories in the bible. The storybook bibles would most times contain pictures and a reference to the bible. This kind of bible is usually ideal for preschoolers and younger children.
When my kids were younger, they used ‘The beginner’s bible’.
I also discovered some other storybook bibles that you may love. The Complete Illustrated Children’s Bible and A Child’s First Bible are some good ones your little one may enjoy looking through. They are colourful and easy to follow along for younger kids.
The second is the full text bible which is as the name implies a full bible. It would most times contain illustrations or annotations that would help the understanding of your child as they read through the text. If it is specifically for children, then it would usually be colourful and could also have some colourful illustrations to make it interesting for your child to read. This is ideal for older kids who can at least reads and follow the text and understand what they are reading well enough.
A word of caution as you choose. There are so many kinds of bible out there, so you want to be careful to choose the authentic word of God and not some watered down version that does not follow God’s word. I remember once buying a ‘bible book’ from a book store that had a lot of heresy in it – things that were not in the bible and if I did not open to look at it when I got home, I would have gone ahead to give that child (it was a gift) something that could cause them to believe an error.
So, exercise caution as you make your choice.
2. How old is my child?
The age of your child is an important factor in deciding on the choice of a bible for that child. I do not see a 16-year old loving something that is mainly full of colourful illustrations or buying your 5 year old a KJV bible they may find the language tough to understand. Check your child’s age and what appeals to that age range before you decide on a bible for that child.
For my children, as they grow older, we have had to buy different bibles for them that is more age-appropriate.
For instance, about a year ago, we bought newer bible for the kids based on their ages and where they are at in their life stages now.
My 13-year old son reads the NIV Boys Bible.
My 10-year old daughter reads and journals with the NIV Holy Bible Journal Edition.
My 6-year old daughter reads the NIRV Adventure Bible.
Of course, your choice is entirely up to you; these are just the ones I have used in the past.
So, ensure you buy an age-appropriate bible for your child based on content and also the kind of bible translation it is.
Is the translation easy to read and understand for my child’s age?
That is a huge factor in determining if your child will continue to enjoy reading that bible or if they will want to read at all.
3. What is my child’s personality or interest?
The kind of bible you should buy for your child is hugely dependent also on your child’s personality and what they love and are interested in. For instance my three kids are all so different in what they love and if I make the mistake of treating their choice of a bible in the same way, I am only setting myself up for disappointment. My oldest boy likes clean, fine lines, he hates clutter and flowery stuff. He is straight to the point! That was why I bought him the kind of bible he uses now – not too many illustrations in it. Just the ideal kind of bible for the kind of person he is.
Come, however, to my older daughter. She loves the art – painting, drawing, colouring, making things. She loves to engage with what she can touch and so I bought her the journaling bible where she has found a way to colour, paint and draw in the margins and express her artistic nature in studying God’s word.
My younger daughter loves colourful, bright and nice looking things too. She loves to colour and draw but not as much as my older girl and so getting her the adventure bible with loads of colourful illustrations is the exact match for the kinds of things she loves to engage in. She is very adventurous.
Reading the bible should be a part of who we are. Why not use it to support your child’s personality and interests?
4. Do I see my child loving, reading and engaging with this bible?
After all said and done, you are the parent of that child and you know them more than anyone else should.
You should go with your instinct in choosing or maybe ask your child what they would love in a bible.
Maybe ask some general questions about the kinds of things they like to see in a bible, the colour of the bible, content, hardcover or leather bound… just to get a feel for what their particular preference will be. If it is a gift then you may want to surprise them and not want to give away your plans, so general questions will be just fine.
In any case, you are not the one to use this bible, it is your child. So, how about you get them something they would truly enjoy, love, read and engage with on a regular basis.
Now, that you know what to pick in a bible, go ahead and buy that bible and also engage your child to read it.
Does your child have a bible they have come to love?
What informed your choice of a bible? How did you decide on what Bible to buy?
Do you have any other questions about reading the bible with your child? Please share with me in the comments below.