When the option to review Zonderkidz’ Faith Builder’s Bible my nine-year old begged me to apply. He then checked the mail everyday until it arrived. Fortunately for him Zonderkidz was quick with the shipping! My three oldest children spend some of their free time each day building and creating with Legos and they have all been inspired to build their own Biblical scenes from this book.
Just to be clear this review is for the extra features and physical appearance of the Faith Builder’s Bible. Zondervan did choose the NIrV translation for this children’s Bible. That particular translation is an easier to read version of the popular NIV with even shorter words and shorter sentence structures. One example of this translation’s simplicity can be found with the Twenty-Third Psalm:
“1 The LORD is my shepherd. He gives
me everything I need.
2 He lets me lie down in fields of
He leads me beside quiet waters.
3 He gives me new strength.
He guides me in the right paths
for the honor of his name”
At eight and a half by five and a half inches the sturdy hardback Bible is nicely sized for young children’s hands. It is also light weight with a sewn binding with the typically thin and slightly transparent pages found in most Bibles. The text is black and in two columns with no red lettering for the words of Jesus. The font is on the small side but that usually isn’t an issue for older children or strong readers. However, for kids still learning to read the small font and double columns would be difficult to process. The primarily blue coloring on the cover will appeal mostly to boys which my daughter found disappointing. She would have preferred a more gender friendly color combination for the cover. The Bible does not contain any study notes, footnotes or maps. Passages that reference other Biblical passages are simply noted in parentheses. The back of the Bible contains a small dictionary and a handy list of ninety-two Bible stories. Since this Bible is for children I think page numbers would have been helpful for the Bible stories list. They are only referenced by book, chapter, and verse.
The primary feature of the Bible is the 24 full color pictures with Biblical scenes or imagery and a “Building Block Verse” and a short description of the scene’s story. The verse could easily be used as a memory verse while building the project and learning about each scene depicted. One of the pictures is the ABC’s of Salvation and presents a simple visual for the “plan of salvation”. My boys thought the most impressive picture in the Bible was of Solomon’s Temple.
After flipping through the pictures my children chose to build their own Biblical scenes from their favorite stories. My oldest built images from the Hebrews journey out of Egypt and wondering in the desert. My middle son and daughter worked together to build a scene from the Garden of Eden. My kids enjoyed looking through the pictures in this Bible and were inspired to create some of the stories for themselves with their Legos. Overall, the Faith Builder’s Bible is nice and kids will love the pictures. I would have liked to have seen a few more features like maps and short articles or study notes directed to the targeted age group.
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