Book Review: NASB Adventure Bible For Kids

Are you a parent who is trying to raise your children to understand and live God's Word? If this is you, then I would like to introduce you to a Bible that will help with this. It's called the NASB Adventure Bible, and I think it would make a great Bible for any child aged 6-13. I received a review copy for free from BibleGateway for being part of their BloggerGrid network of blogs. I received the review copy in exchange for an honest review of the book. This seems to fit me, as well, since I help out in the Children's Ministry at my church. Some of the features of this children's Bible include:

1. The entire text of the 1995 NASB translation. While the NASB translation underwent an update in 2020, the 1995 version is still a solid text. The updates made in 2020 do not affect the translation, but were simply a way of updating language. This is one of the translations that I have referred to when doing exegetical work. It is also useful in introducing concepts to younger believers or newer believers. This is because it sometimes translates words in a manner that brings out the concept behind the word. As an example, the text of Matthew 5:22, Jesus warns his disciples that saying "Raca!" to a brother will make him guilty before the Sanhedrin. Most young readers will not know what Raca means or what the Sanhedrin was. This is where the advantage of the 1995 NASB text comes in. The ESV translates "Raca!" as "insults his brother." This is a good translation as far as it goes, but it doesn't capture the full meaning of the word, particularly what kind of insult Jesus has in mind. The NASB text gives a better translation by translating "Raca!" as "you good-for-nothing." This not only captures the fact that this is an insult, but also specifically what type of insult is being spoken of. In regards to the Sanhedrin, the NASB is in the same class as the NKJV in its translation, yet makes the passage clearer than the NKJV. While other translations that do not translate this word as "Sanhedrin" translate this word with something like "council" (so for the NKJV), the NASB goes a step further in pointing out the authority such a council had by translating this word as "Supreme Court," a concept that we have in American society that indicates the kind of authority the Sanhedrin had. Indeed, the Sanhedrin, a council of elders among the Jewish people, was essentially the Jewish Supreme Court in the first century. Thus the text provides a strong faithfulness to the text while not making the translation overly technical. 

2. A section entitled "Live It!" This section encourages children to place what they read into action. This is especially important for children who are just learning what it means to be a Christian. This section sometimes contains cross-references that shed light on a particular passage, or help reinforce a concept. This Bible also contains a section entitled "Life in Bible Times," which helps explain some of the background information of particular passages. These sections help transport your kids to the time of the Biblical events so that they come away with a deeper understanding of what it would be like to call God a shield, or work as a potter, and so on. This section is also valuable as a conversation starter with your children regarding what God's word means.

3. Inserts throughout Scripture to help your children understand what is being said by a passage. For example, an insert between pages 306 and 307 list the "Ten Commandments for Kids," and distills the Ten Commandments into language that children will understand. Another example comes from the insert between pages 626 and 627, which gives a children's version of 1 Corinthians 13, which is also known as the "Love Chapter." These inserts also often come in the form of directories that point to important stories in the Bible. If your child wants to read about Moses being rescued from the Nile, Jesus entering the Temple, or the boy Samuel hearing the voice of God, they will know exactly where to look. There are also instructions on how to pray and even a reading plan for children on the life of Jesus.

There are other features that could be mentioned, but these are the most notable. Overall, if I had to give a rating out of 10, I would give this Bible a 9. There is always room for improvement, and I can think of a couple of features that I would like to see. Overall, this is a solid Children's Bible. It would make a great gift for a child, whether your own or a child in your Children's Ministry who may not have a solid children's Bible of their own. You can obtain a copy of this Bible here.


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