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The Jesus Book - Claudine Gevry,Stephen Elkins

The Jesus Book

Author: Claudine Gevry,Stephen Elkins
Book title: The Jesus Book
ISBN: 1400314631
ISBN13: 978-1400314638
Publisher: Thomas Nelson Inc; Har/Com edition (August 4, 2009)
Language: English
Category: Religions
Rating: 4.6/5
Votes: 668
Pages: 96 pages
More formats: mbr azw lit mobi

Introduces Jesus, discussing who he is, what he did and why, his teachings, and when and where key events in his life took place.
Reviews: (7)
No cd included, description didn't say it was missing.
Just as advertised
Perfect for helping to share the gospel to a special needs child with mild developmental delays. Thank you very much!
I am very particular about the books I use to teach my children, especially when it comes to things about Jesus and the Bible. With so many fluffy, say-nothing books in the market that oversimplify the life of Jesus, it is a hard task indeed for the discerning parent to find an acceptable book about Jesus. Into this mix comes The Jesus Book, written by Stephen Elkins and illustrated by Claudine Gevry.

With very colorful, one- or two-page stories/lessons, The Jesus Book attempts to give relatively simple answers to the following categories:

-Who Jesus is
-What Jesus did
-What Jesus taught
-When it happened (answering questions like "When was Jesus born?" or "When did Peter deny Jesus?")
-Where it happened (answering questions like "Where was Jesus born?" or "Where is Jesus now?")
-Why it happened (answering questions like "Why was Jesus sent?" or "Why does Jesus have authority on earth?")
-How it happened (answering questions like "How do we receive eternal life?" or How will we know when Jesus comes again?"

I was very glad to see Scripture references included with each lesson instead of simply relying on the book itself to tell what the Bible says. The beautiful illustrations accompanying each lesson are simple, yet conveying the substance of the lesson. The book covers many various aspects of Jesus' life that most other children's books don't even come close to discussing, such as what the prophets of the Old Testament said about Jesus, why Jesus had to die, where Jesus died, why does Jesus have authority on earth, etc.

There are two major drawbacks that I have concerning the book. The first, and perhaps most important, is while hinted or implied, the book never outright says that Jesus IS God. It says he is the Son of God, came from heaven, is the Word, the One who made the earth, but never that he is GOD. In the lesson where it describes Jesus as "the Word," although it references John 1:1 "In the beginning was the Word...," even here it does not finish or even talk about the rest of the verse where it says "and the Word WAS GOD." For a book targeting children, such an important point shouldn't be overlooked.

The second is in relation to the subject of salvation. We are told that Jesus died in order that sins might be forgiven (p.32), but no clear reason is given for WHY sins need to be forgiven. Additionally, we are told on p. 41 that repentance means we "choose to change ourselves for God." I know that there may be some disagreement on this point, but as a proponent of Reformed theology and the depravity of man, I believe that this is a misunderstanding of the work God does in us first. There is no recognition of our need for God to help us change. Even in the "sinner's prayer" on p.89, no confession or repentance of sin is mentioned.

While the book shouldn't be viewed as a doctrinal primer, these two areas that I've mentioned are essential in understanding the person and work of Jesus. Otherwise we end up with a book that talks about a really good man that simply shows us an example of how to live. The Jesus Book, while certainly a step in the right direction, still leaves a lot to be desired.

(Thanks to the Thomas Nelson Book Review Blogger program for providing a copy of this book.)
The book is designed to answer children's questions about Jesus and Christianity, without watering down the information too much. It also does not go over their heads, as long as you control how you present the book to the child. At the top of each section there is a short sentence that introduces a concept about Jesus. For younger children, this suffices as it gives them some vocabulary. Following each little bit, such as "John the Baptist said Jesus was The Lamb of God," there is a bible verse reference as well as a more detailed explanation. These more detailed explanations are more appropriate for older children. However, an adult reading this book with a younger child could use those explanations as a foundation for discussion.

My copy of the book was accompanied by a CD with 30 songs for children. Listening to that CD reminded me of my childhood. My sister and I were a part of our church's youth choirs and put on annual performances.

I would use this book with children starting in the 5-7 year-old age range. Independent readers are going to enjoy reading the information, but may come to you with questions. Otherwise, again, it is a great conversation tool. It is not a book that is meant to be read all at once.

I received a free copy of this book from Thomas Nelson publishers in exchange for my review.
Stephen Elkins is a best-selling author, musician, and Grammy-nominated producer. He is author of the 100 Bible Stories series and Read-n-See DVD Bible. Claudine Gevry illustrator of over sixty books including "The Jesus Book". Her whimsical style is shown throughout this book.

About the Book

The Jesus book is one of the best resources and educational guides that I've seen for children on the market! Author Stephen Elkins makes understanding everything we need to know about Jesus very simple by breaking it down in the following seven sections:

* Who Jesus Is
* What Jesus Did
* What Jesus Taught
* When It Happened
* Why It Happened
* How It Happened

A very useful time line is included in the When it Happened section starting the readers in Genesis and ending in John. Located in the Where it Happened section you'll find colorfully illustrated maps that show were Jesus walked throughout his journey. In the What Jesus Taught section you'll find that Jesus liked to minister to those around him with parables and you'll see how he taught us to pray. In the Why and How it happened section, children will learn why Jesus was sent to save us and how it happened.

Each mini story of explanation is backed with scripture that you may choose to look up in your own Bible to show children how what they are being taught is also in the Bible. I think it's never to early to teach children to look to the Word of God for answers that they may be seeking.

A fun thirty song filled cd by the Wonder Kids is also included featuring well loved Bible songs like Stand Up For Jesus, God is so Good, and Do Lord just to name a few of the wonderful tracks.

My Thoughts

Stephen Elkins has done a wonderful job with this book. Illustrator Claudine Gevry also does a great job in bringing to life each page with her colorful eye catching illustrations. The music cd is a great addition as many of the songs I grew up listening to as a child!

I am looking forward to sharing this book with my children, as I know many questions that may be asked or pondered about Jesus will be answered. This book would be great for home, church, and even school use. I give this book 5 stars!
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