Whatever age we are, the Bible is relevant and transformative. So when it comes to Children’s Bible, what makes the NIrV translation better than the rest?
When I was around 4 years old, my dad read me the story of Zacchaeus. Climbing trees was my favourite pastime as an adventurous, knee-scuffed young boy, which is why I think this story connected with me – leading me to ask my dad “can I met Jesus too”.
So for old times’ sake, I decided to turn to my childhood favourite in the NIrV Adventure Bible for Early Readers. Finding Zacchaeus and the sycamore tree was painless, using the child-friendly ‘Subject Index’ at the back. It took less than a minute to read, with short, snappy sentences and easy-to-understand, simple words.
Compare it to the NIV (the translation the NIrV is derived from) and this becomes strikingly clear:
Luke 19:1-10 - Comparision between the NIV & NIrV
With slightly more words, twice the number of sentences and simplified wording the story becomes much, much easier to read. Early readers will (understandably) stumble over long words, strange phrases and long sentences. The NIrV has simply taken the NIV and made it readable for 6 to 10 year olds.
The result is wonderful. Instead of re-writing the Bible (like many storybook Bible’s have done) this translation is both faithful to scripture and kind to children. In essence, when giving your child the NIrV you are giving them the NIV – with a reading age of 6-10.
I can see how some would see this as pointless – ‘why give children a ‘full’ Bible when they aren’t mentally or spiritually ready. Let them colour in Noah’s Ark until they’re old enough’. But I disagree. And I think the key to my argument lies in my childhood story.
We rely on our parents as children – to feed us, clothe us, even read for us. If my Dad hadn't fed my hunger to meet Jesus by reading me the story of Zacchaeus, I probably won’t have picked up the Bible a couple years later to read it for myself.
As Christian parents you can go on a journey with your children. You can begin by reading illustrated Bible stories ‘to them’, then reading the stories ‘with them’, to giving them their very own Bible to read for it for ‘themselves’. Instilling a love for the Bible is an important element of healthy Christian development (plus you’ll be surprised how much you’ll learn along the way).
Finding the Right NIrV Children’s Bible for Your Kids
If you’re kids are very intuitive, constantly asking you questions about faith, life and God, the NIrV Kids Quest Study Bible is worth investigating. The Bible answers over 500 real questions asked by real kids, is well presented for everyday reading and features Jason and his hedgehog friend, Max.
If you’re looking for a Bible to motivate your son/daughter, here’s some suggestions. The NIrV Supper Heroes Bible is packed full with super hero illustrations, profiles, quizzes and Bible hero facts that will get video-gaming, comic-book reading lads engaged. And for girls the NIrV Precious Princess Bible is a Bible to be proud, with illustrations of all the princesses and queens in the Bible.
As mentioned earlier, the NIrV Adventure Bible for Early Readers is the latest edition of the collection. Illustrated throughout with leafy boarders and stand-out, glossy pages, this Bible feels like a safari through the Ancient world of the Bible. Packed with historical facts, hand-on activities, memory verses and 20 full-colour safari themed games, your 6 to 10’s will soon be teaching you all about the Bible. This adventurous Bible is also available in Hardback, Purple Leather-Soft & Green Leather-Soft editions.
If you’re searching for ways to read the Bible together, the NIrV Kids’ Devotional Bible is a great option. With short weekday devotionals and practical weekend devotionals, like visiting the zoo or gazing at the stars, this is a fantastic tool for getting parents and children reading, learning and growing together.
If you’re a Children’s Worker looking for affordable Bibles to give as gifts, check out the NIrV Gift & Award Bible for Kids. These charming Bibles are available in Blue or Burgundy and includes a presentation page, Bible dictionary, interesting Bible facts section and ‘The ABCs of Salvation’ – a guide to accepting Jesus written for kids.
Thanks to my parents, I have a deep respect and love for the Bible. In fact, it’s probably the reason I went on to study Theology as my degree and why I’m still a Christian.
Help your 6 to 10’s read it, understand it, enjoy it and apply it with the tailor-made translation for early readers: the NIrV.
January 18th, 2013 - Posted & Written by James Warwood