Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Review: The Big Picture Story Bible

Review: The Big Picture Story Bible

It seems to me that most Christians fail to grasp the flow of redemptive history – understanding the actions of God in saving His church, from Creation to Consummation. I know I had very little training in this regard and have been extremely thankful for the work of scholars like D. A. Carson in helping to grow my understanding.
While at the 2005 Bethlehem Conference for Pastor’s I suddenly had that rush of adrenaline as I realized I had not bought anything to take home to my kids yet! (My Dad always came back from business trips with a present and I loved it!) So, I ran down to the book tables to see what I could find for my brood.
I didn’t have much of a problem stocking up for the older ones, but I could not find anything for my then 3-year old son. In desperation I grabbed The Big Picture Story Bible and rushed off to the airport (after paying for it!). My thought at the time was that this was just a Bible... that was big (since it is)... and that had pictures. As in "a large book with large pictures." I would not have even thought of buying it if not so desperate, as we already have a whack of every kind of kid-Bible there is. Boy, was I in for a fantastic surprise!
The idea of “big picture” in the title is that this Bible teaches God’s big picture, meaning His plan or scheme. When we are dealing with some issue, we often have to think of “the big picture” – how do all these decisions relate to one another, what will the impact be on others, etc. Well, that is what this particular Bible seeks to do – to teach how the whole meta-narrative pieces together, following the big themes like promise, temple, king, sacrifice, redemption, etc.
True confession: I have learned a lot from this kid’s Bible!
David Helm has done a wonderful job of developing these “big picture” ideas and most importantly, demonstrating how they are fulfilled in Christ! In other words, this is a Christ-centered Bible. I realize that may sound odd, but I think that is a good description. Sometimes there is great benefit in putting aside detail in order to get a grasp of the whole, and that is what Helm has done so well.
Most importantly, my now 4-year old son (with learning disabilities) is grasping significant theological themes. The girls, too, are increasing in their grasp of the overall reason why Jesus had to die for sinners.
There is no cure-all or perfect tool to teach our children. The catechism, novels, kids programs, DVD’s may all serve in various ways. But one great tool in your home arsenal is this Bible.
I highly recommend it!


  1. I first heard of this book on a message by Marty Machowski from Sovereign Grace Ministries. We've ordered it for our children, but it hasn't arrived yet. I'm glad to hear the postitive report.

    Marty's message is highly recommended. He talks about developing a Gospel-centered childrens' ministry, dealing with such topics as decisional regeneration and the true evangelistic values of childrens' ministry.
    I'll include the URL, but I won't make a link. The MP3 is $2, but PDF notes are available for free.

  2. I first picked up this Bible off of the table just because I needed something to read. But I've picked it up a lot more since! This is a truly amazing book, and a good learning tool for all ages.
    It's pretty cool to see how my younger brother, even with his disabilities, can remember stuff like Moses, David and Goliath, and such. How touching it is to hear him recite his favorite part of the whole book: "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth, peace to men!"