Help Kids Trace God's Promises - The Beginner's Gospel Story Bible releases today!

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How do you explain the gospel to toddlers and preschoolers? My new book focuses on the promises of God to make the gospel come alive to the littlest hearts. Through fifty-two Old and New Testament stories, The Beginner’s Gospel Story Bible highlights God’s perfect promises and his plan to save his people through Jesus. Trish Mahoney’s colorful illustrations make each story come alive and also add fun teaching elements to hold the attention of even the youngest children.

Until November 23rd, 2017, special early launch pricing up to 50% off is available through New Growth Press. 

What Others Are Saying

“This simple, beautifully illustrated story Bible is perfect for helping the youngest members of God’s family trace the gospel thread through the rich tapestry of Scripture. It will be the first story Bible I buy for all my grandchildren.”

Iain Duguid, Professor of Old Testament, Westminster Theological Seminary; author

“Jared Kennedy has created a spectacular resource to help us teach the Bible to our youngest children. Though the language is simple enough for toddlers, the gospel truth it carries can and will transform lives. The illustrations compliment the story, creating a colorful journey for children as they discover the promises of God and how they are fulfilled in Jesus Christ. I will be placing a copy of this book in all our children’s ministry classrooms and recommending that every family in our church with small children add it to their bookshelf.”

Marty Machowski, Pastor; author of The OlogyThe Gospel Story Bible, and other books and curriculum for the church and family

“With colorful, attention-grabbing illustrations and simple, heart-grabbing stories, The Beginner’s Gospel Story Bible is a must for you and your littles.”

Jessica Thompson, speaker; podcaster; author of Everyday Grace

“As a teacher of Biblical Interpretation, I frequently lament the hermeneutical thoughtlessness found in many children’s materials. The Beginner’s Gospel Story Bible, however, is a different story. It is characterized by both faithfulness to the intent of the inspired biblical authors and attention to the unifying themes of Scripture that find their ultimate fulfillment in Christ. The book is also beautifully illustrated. I wish this story Bible had been available when my children were younger. I am pleased to commend it with enthusiasm.”

Robert L. Plummer, Professor of New Testament Interpretation, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

“Colorful! Simple! Beautiful! Jesus-centered! Those are just a few of the words that I would use to describe this new book from Jared Kennedy. The Beginner’s Gospel Story Bible is a reliable resource to provide to children’s teachers for use in their classrooms and to parents who need a tool to begin discipling their children at home.”

Timothy Paul Jones, C. Edwin Gheens Professor of Christian Family Ministry The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

The Beginner’s Gospel Story Bible lives up to its title. It truly is filled with stories that highlight the gospel promise in each portion of the Scriptures. Kennedy brings familiar passages into focus, highlighting God as the promise-making and promise-keeping good father who loves his children. Beautifully illustrated and perfect for a wide variety of ages, this book will definitely prompt questions and conversations about what life might look like as a follower of our wonderful promise-fulfilling God. The gospel is a clear and natural part of each chapter as God’s plan of redemption unfolds through the great stories of the Scripture. Focused on Jesus as the fulfillment of God’s promise to provide a way back to life with him, The Beginner’s Gospel Story Bible is both faithful and fun. I highly recommend it. 

J. Michael Thigpen, Associate Professor of Old Testament and Semitics, Talbot School of Theology, Biola University

“It has always been challenging to find gospel-rich books to share with our kids, especially when they were very little. Here, Jared Kennedy and Trish Mahoney offer an engaging, beautiful, and fun resource for families. The stories manage to be faithful to the Scriptures and clear for young children, and they’re loaded with conversation starters. My only wish is that this book had come sooner!”

Mike Cosper, Founder and Director of Harbor Media

“Once I started reading The Beginner's Gospel Story Bible, I could hardly stop. Jared Kennedy retells favorite Bible stories with a freshness and clarity that toddlers and preschoolers (and their parents) will love. Open this book with your little one, and watch eyes light up, fingers point, and smiles start to spread. Every page pops with bright colors and playful illustrations. Best of all, each of the fifty-two short chapters will point your child to Jesus. And that’s good news—for young and old alike.”

Champ Thornton, Author of The Radical Book for Kids

“Parents, if you want a beginner’s bible study that’s clear, beautifully-illustrated, on-level and brimming with gospel-promises, look no further. Just spend one minute flipping through The Beginners Gospel Story Bible and you will be convinced that Jared Kennedy is a pastor who knows how to convey bible truths in a memorable manner. Sure to capture little minds with big promises!”

Dave Harvey, President of Sojourn Network; founder of AmICalled.com; author of When Sinners Say I Do and Letting Go: Rugged Love for Wayward Souls

“It is invaluable that a child’s understanding of the story of God’s love for us to be grand and expansive. Not overly simplified in the form of a love note, but rather as an epic story of perfection, sin, redemption, and restoration. If a child comes to this understanding at a young age, it will fundamentally transform how they relate to God and read scripture. Jared’s distillation of these gospel truths is an invaluable resource to parents and pastors alike.”

Sam Luce, Pastor of Families, Redeemer Church, Utica, NY 

“Stories are great conveyors of truth, which is why Jesus so often told stories to his followers. His stories were often simple, repeatable, and powerful. Children of all ages won't be able to put this book down because the truths revealed are timeless!”

Steve Wright, Pastor of Discipleship and Church Planting, Family Church, West Palm Beach, FL

“Jared Kennedy has written a beautiful, theologically rich book that everyone will love—kids, parents, and teachers! The illustrations are captivating and stunning, matched only by Jared’s passion for God’s Word and the incredible way he makes it accessible for kids. I love this book and can’t wait to read it with my daughter!”

Melanie Rainer, Director of Content at JellyTelly

“Jared is a master teacher. He sees what each Bible story says about God, and also what God says in each story to a child’s heart. This book is packed with simple and strong truths like, ‘God never forgets his people,’ and, ‘Jesus died instead of us.’ Jared gets to the core of each Bible story without dumbing it down, and then makes it easy to understand and remember. That’s powerful teaching—exactly what kids need!”

Jack Klumpenhower, Author of Show Them Jesus

The Beginner's Gospel Story Bible is a gift to parents and Bible teachers alike. The stories are written with a gospel crispness and illustrated with vivid colors and pictures that are sure to teach little minds about the beauty of God and his Kingdom. The Lord will use this work to plant many seeds in mini hearts.”

Jamaal Williams, Lead Pastor, Sojourn Community Church – Midtown

“We absolutely must pass the faith on to the next generation, and I’m delighted to see this book, which gives us one more way to do it. Enjoy!”

Jim Hamilton, Professor of Biblical Theology, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary; Pastor of Kenwood Baptist Church in Louisville, KY

“God’s promises are at the heart of the gospel, and those promises reveal his heart while deepening our faith, sustaining our hope, and enabling us to know and experience his love. The Gospel Story Bible illustrates, clarifies, and applies God’s promises made and kept. Jared’s pastoral heart and his passion for reaching kids with the gospel is seen on every page. Use this book to train children, adults, and even ministry leaders to see the beautiful story of God in ways that stir the imagination and engage the heart, while grounding the reader in the faithful and enduring love of God.”

Robert K. Cheong, Pastor of Care, Sojourn Community Church

Nine Questions and Answers about The Beginner's Gospel Story Bible

The Beginner’s Gospel Story Bible is a gospel-centered, Bible storybook for toddlers and preschoolers with 52 Bible stories retold in a simple and compelling way. Here's nine key questions and answers that will help you learn more:

What makes your book different from other Bible storybooks? Some Bible storybooks miss the meaning of individual passages because they focus on the big picture. Even more often toddler story books miss unifying biblical themes because they’re focused re-telling individual stories. A few Bible storybooks—like the ones by Marty Machowski and Sally Lloyd-Jones—do both well, but they aren’t geared toward early readers. That’s what makes this book different. Through the faithful re-telling of key stories, toddlers and early preschoolers will hear the good news of God’s love for them clearly expressed in ways that will speak to their young hearts.

What led you to want to write a Bible storybook for toddlers and first readers? As I said above, there are a number of excellent gospel-centered resources for young children—great story books and curriculum, but few of them focus on toddlers and first readers. When teaching this age group, I found myself reaching back to resources from the seventies and eighties—storybooks by Ella Lindvall and Ken Taylor. I saw a need, and I wanted to provide a more contemporary resource for ages two to five.

Can children that young really learn the gospel? Yes. Jesus said, “Let the children come to me.” He meant kids of every age. You see, children often learn the language of faith before their faith is fully realized. As soon as kids start talking, we can help them learn a beginning vocabulary of faith.

What do you mean by “a beginning vocabulary of faith”? In The Beginner’s Gospel Story Bible, kids will learn the name of Jesus as well as the names of other key Bible characters. They’ll also learn basic Bible words like sin, promise, Jesus, Savior, pray, and forgive.

What are the special features that will help keep beginning readers engaged? In all 52 stories, one key truth is highlighted in bold letters. Each story also ends with a question that parents and caregivers can use to further reinforce the truth. Brightly colored illustrations highlight each story and add fun teaching elements of counting, opposites, patterns, and object recognition to keep the youngest child’s attention.

Does the book have a central theme? Yes. The Beginner’s Gospel Story Bible traces God’s perfect promises through thestories of the Old and New Testament. Our youngest children will see how our good and all-powerful God always keeps his word (Num. 23:19). The way he fulfills his promises is better than anyone could have imagined!

Why 52 stories? One for every week of the year. In addition to being a helpful resource for family devotions, I wanted this book to be a helpful tool for Sunday School and children’s ministry classrooms as well. Since there are 52 stories, you might consider teaching one story per week as part of a one-year Bible curriculum for toddlers and young preschoolers.

When I’m telling stories to young children, what should I do to keep the gospel central? As you read the story, help the children identify with the characters who need God to save and rescue them. Then, as you tell the story, make God the main character. Keep who he is and what he does to rescue and save front and center as you tell it.

What kinds of things did you learn about God’s Word or about yourself while you were writing? One Bible truth I didn’t know is that the Ark of the Covenant went in the midst of the people (Jos. 6:9) when they marched around Jericho (not out in front as I originally wrote down in a first draft—thank God for good editors!). That fact illustrates a key truth for me. To accomplish what God has called me to as a parent and a Christian, I desperately need God to go with me—in my midst—every day. I pray this book will encourage that kind of desperate faith for you and your family too.

Introducing The Beginner's Gospel Story Bible

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The Beginner’s Gospel Story Bible is a gospel-centered, Bible storybook for toddlers and preschoolers with 52 Bible stories retold in a simple and compelling way. This new book traces through the stories of the Old and New Testament how God keeps his promises in surprising ways— better than anyone could have ever thought or imagined!

Each story highlights for young children God’s story of redemption through Jesus and the unexpected ways God’s grace and mercy are revealed throughout the Bible.

Children will hear the good news of God’s love for them clearly expressed in ways that will speak to their young hearts. Brightly colored illustrations highlight each story and add fun teaching elements of counting, opposites, patterns, and object recognition to keep the youngest child’s attention. Each story ends with a question that parents and caregivers can use to further reinforce the story.