Author: Noel Amos, 23 November 2023
The Bible is God’s heart for us, made available on paper, and that’s not boring. But how can we engage children with its teachings and stories when many are thinking, ‘What does something written 2,000 years ago have to do with me?’
The brilliant new version of the Good News Bible – Children’s Rainbow Edition not only answers that question, but is packed with ways to help children better engage with Scripture.
Lisa Cherrett, from Bible Society’s Publishing team, has been a part of this three-year project since its beginning. ‘Bible literacy rates are increasingly low among children, so we knew we needed to create something that would stand out – something exciting for kids to look at,’ she said.
This colourful, full-text Bible has been thoughtfully designed as just that: a multi-faceted experience of Scripture. Many of the activities and illustrations, and even the cover design, were chosen with the input of children.
‘I love being able to write in this Bible because normally you can’t doodle in a Bible, but this one encourages you to,’ said a year 4 student at Tadpole Farm primary school in Swindon, where the Bible’s launch event was held.
With captivating illustrations, a key words list, and a reading trail woven throughout the text that connects the epic narrative of the Bible, it presents God’s word not just as a book full of information, but as a unified, living story.
The Children’s Rainbow Edition, published last month, will be used by 7–11-year-olds in faith schools across the country. Bev Smith, the Head of Schools Work at Christian online resource site RE:QUEST, worked to make the interactions in the Bible complementary to children’s home lives as well as their educational environments. ‘We wanted it to work for a child connecting with God by themselves at home and when learning in school,’ she said.
The Rainbow edition is accessible even for children without faith backgrounds. With articles that answer questions like, ‘Who is the Holy Spirit?’ and ‘What’s the meaning of Christmas?’ it’s an invitation for all young people to discover the truth of the gospel.
For Bible Society and RE:QUEST this has been a passion project – the fruit of a desire to help a generation of kids turn their hearts to Jesus. ‘It’s all there,’ says Bev, ‘Our prayer is that children pick it up and are captivated by it. This is a work of love.’
The epic story of Scripture is told in a way kids can grasp in the Rainbow Edition with:
There's more to see. You can download some sample pages from the Good News Bible – Children’s Rainbow Edition, hear more of what the pupils and others thought, and get a copy for yourself at the Rainbow Edition's homepage.
This story first appeared in Word in Action, Bible Society’s free magazine. Word in Action is published three times each year and brings you up to date with the Bible work your generosity is enabling worldwide. Subscribe if you don’t already.